Many parents would never forget the moment they held their children for the first time. Many were exhausted, terrified, overwhelmed and so very much in love with their bundle of joy.
What does the word “Hero” mean to us? According to the Oxford Dictionary, “A hero is selfless, a genuinely good person, and someone gets the undivided attention of all of us and causes change. Someone who is willing to risk his own life to save another.”
We have seen many heroes on TV Programmes, but the most important hero to many of us would be our mom and dad. They are always there for the children whenever they need them. When the children are sick, they make them smile, and that always makes them feel better. They are always there to support the family, regardless of how challenging the situations may be.
During the period of the circuit breaker, most, if not all, parents had to face the challenges of working from home and caring for their little ones. It is a parent’s love and support that holds everything together for a child.
We interviewed two parents from Agape Little Uni.@ Compassvale who had braved through the storm from having to work from home to managing the children during the Circuit breaker in Singapore.
Jerlyn Chen’s Parents (Nursery 2)
1. What was your first thought when our Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong announced that schools will be suspended to prevent the spread of Covid-19?
Headache. As I have three children and I could not imagine the three of them staying at home and having Home-Based Learning (HBL) while I work from home. My husband needed to work during that period
2. How did you manage taking care of your children and to work from home?
I started my work at home early to check some emails. My boys’ HBL started at 8.00 am and they came to me when they needed help. My younger boy needed more assistance in his HBL, hence more time was spent on him. After my elder boy was done with his HBL, he assisted his younger sister on her HBL. In between their HBL. I did my work too.
3. How did you cope with your challenges?
Frankly speaking, it was really stressful and tough to juggle in between work and the kids’ HBL at the same time. I spoke to my eldest son and he saw how stressful my work could be with meetings during the day. He volunteered to guide his sister on her HBL which really eased part of my stress.
4. What is one valuable lesson learned from this experience?
I am glad that, my hubby, including my sons, helped out with the chores. Everyone should try to do their part and abide by the rules and together we can fight this over soon.
Safwa and Luth’s Parents (Nursery 1 and Nursery 2)
1. How did you feel when you heard the announcement of school closure?
Daddy and I were both worried that we could not manage our time, having to care for our two kids and meet datelines or attend meetings for work. Only mummy worked from home while Daddy had to be on site for work.
2. How did you balance between working and teaching your children at home?
I started a ‘new’ routine at home for myself and the kids. We used the timetable suggested by the school, especially for meals and nap time. I allocated one hour in the morning and one hour in the evening for teaching the kids. I tried to finish work during their meal, nap or playtime. I usually separated the one hour into smaller twenty-minute sessions with breaks in between.
3. What were the challenges you faced during the circuit breaker?
The challenges faced would be to go through the take-home kits because the topics to cover were different for Safwa and Luth and they had different attention spans and focus. I wasn’t able to complete all the activities in the take-home kits because I picked and chose the activities that I thought were easier to manage and interested both kids.
4. Can you share some tips for other parents?
These are tips which worked for Daddy and me:
- I set a routine but had some flexibility by allocating some ‘free-time’ during which the kids chose to play with any toy or pretend-play as Safwa and Luth liked to build a ‘tree-house’ during this time.
- I tried to limit screen time as much as possible but on days when I had to attend long meetings or conduct training, I turned on their favourite YouTube Channel (Alphablocks/ Number blocks) or their favourite cartoons. They may still come looking for me after half an hour but that’s alright for me.
Therefore, in whatever situation the family meets with, mom and dad are always the heroes of the family. They are always there for their children. They both know that nothing could change the way they are. This is why parents are their children’s heroes and they always will be.