Making it through college can be a challenge for any of us—add to that the responsibility of being a single parent and college can be especially demanding. Here are some helpful tips to help those single parents become successful students as well as parents.
1. Identify your support network. There will be days when you feel like graduating from college is an impossible goal and you’ll need someone to both listen and cheer you on.
2. Secure consistent child care. Not having consistent child care is one of the biggest barriers parents face in going back to school.
3. Make a schedule. Time management is a must when single parents go back to school. Having a consistent bedtime for your children is very important so you have time after they go to bed to do chores or homework.
4. Communicate. We are all human and things come up. This is especially true for single parents. You can never predict when your kids will get sick or hurt and need you to be home with them.
5. Don’t overload yourself with work and class. Anything more than 17 hours a week can interfere with a student’s academic success. If you have to work more than 17 hours a week to make ends meet, consider taking fewer credits. It may take you longer to complete your education, but you’ll be less likely to burn out and quit along the way.
6. Do your homework with your children. Depending on the age of your children, you may be able to do homework with them. If they aren’t in school, have them sit at the table with you coloring or practicing their ABCs. Your kids will feel like you are doing something together but you are also getting studying done.
7. Let go of parental guilt. The time that you’ll be in college is a very short period of time in your child’s life. In the long run most children not only understand why their parent went back to school, but respect them for doing so.
8. Take care of yourself. Eat right, exercise, get enough sleep and build a social support network. Taking care of yourself will make it all more manageable.
Source: Editor -Tammy Noteboom, website; http://villagefamilymag.org/2011/11/23/8-tips-for-single-parents-going-back-to-school/