As many parents around Australia juggle the demands of remote learning while working and running households, parents of the youngest school-age kids have a particularly heavy load.
In a recent article by Professors Rosalind Dixon and Richard Holden, the duo expressed the opinion that it should be kindergarten (prep or reception) aged kids, rather than year 12 students, that receive back-to-school priority from state governments.
The pair wrote that those early foundational skills of reading and writing are not only the building blocks for lifelong education, but incredibly time-consuming and difficult to teach for stressed out, locked-down parents.
Watch: The horoscopes home-schooling their kids. Post continues below.
Mamamia spoke to three mums to find out what remote learning is really like with kindergarteners, as well as a primary school teacher, for her opinion on how parents can stay sane with the kids at home.
Sarah, mum-of-three and marketing manager from Melbourne.
Mother-of-three Sarah has been homeschooling her eldest son on and off all year, while working part-time and caring for her two younger children.
"I am constantly oscillating between all three kids and it’s pretty intense," Sarah said.
"My partner works out of the house from 5.30am until 5.30pm, so I’m very busy. Thankfully, my son Damien’s school has been providing a formal schedule each day, which helps," she added.
"Damien’s day usually starts at 9am with an online class meeting, then he might get put into a group to do reading and writing exercises. I have to sit with him the whole time so it can be madness as the other two kids need me too."
Sarah says that she takes all three children outside for an activity at least once a day and that she has to do most of her work as a marketing manager at night once the kids are in bed.
"Everyone is doing it tough right now and while I know we’ve been through it before, it’s not easy. Kids are resilient but I feel sorry for them with all the stopping and starting of their school learning," she said.