Working from home: hints and tips for teachers

Many of you will be used to being in the classroom everyday, and not used to working from home. Turning your home into your office is tricky even at the best of times, but you’ve been given almost no time to prepare.

Here are some hints and tips to hopefully make the transition a bit easier

  • Get into the right mindset for work

When working from home, do all the things you would normally do to prepare for your role: Set your alarm, make coffee and wear clothes similar to the ones you would wear to work. Wearing shoes is a good way to feel like you’re ready to work, as you wouldn’t take off your shoes at school. Getting into the right frame of mind can make you more productive.

  • Find a dedicated workspace

Rather than sitting on the couch – a space which is associated with leisure time – dedicate a specific room or surface in your home to your work. Ideally this space should have a decent chair which supports your back. If possible, try to keep your bedroom as a space for sleeping and relaxing.

  • Communicate expectations to anyone who will be home with you

When working from home, especially during these difficult times, you may have company. Make sure to communicate to anyone in your household that they need to respect your work space during work hours.

  • Get organised

Spending time figuring out what you’ll do today can take away from actually doing those things. Try to solidify your schedule the day before, so in the morning you’re ready for the tasks ahead and you know roughly what to expect; this might also make you feel more in control of the unusual situation. There’s nothing stopping you from making changes if something more important crops up – it’s your schedule and you are in charge of it. Try using a calendar to dedicate time slots to certain tasks.

  • Take clear breaks

It can be so easy to get distracted when working from home that you avoid breaks altogether, but you also need to relax! Rather than just opening YouTube or social media, however, use your breaks to get away from your desk. Have some nice food, try to go for a walk outside or spend time with others who might also be in the house.

  • Stay connected

Working from home might help you focus on your work in the short term, but it can also make you feel cut off from what’s happening in your school and with your colleagues. Instant messaging and videoconferencing tools can make it easy to check in with your colleagues, to support one another and to remind you of how your work is contributing to the big picture.