[Student Mama] Time Management Tips For Student-Parents

college campus

Being a college student is difficult enough without having the added responsibilities of being a parent. However, I have learned a thing or two over these past three months.

Organization is Key

Getting organized and staying organized will save you so much time and aggravation! Sometimes it’s easier said than done, though.

By having all of my school work in one place, I find it much easier to find things. In the corner of my living room I have a desk with two corkboards and a shelf. There I am able to keep all of my books, supplies and backpack.

With all of the different assignments, tests, appointments, after school activities and my other daily responsibilities, it can be hard to remember everything. That’s why I also keep a very detailed schedule.

Another thing I started to do regularly is a five to ten minute tidy up of my desk area in the evening. This also gives me a chance to review my schedule and class work for the day. That way I can see what’s been done and what needs to be done.


I recently started keeping a very detailed schedule, but it’s not enough to just have one schedule. Even though I make a habit to look over my planner in the evenings, it helps to have a few reminders around.

All of my important dates are marked on a paper calendar that hangs above my desk. I also put reminders up on my corkboard if it’s important, but not urgent.

Having appointments, tests and assignment due dates scheduled into my phone with a reoccurring reminder helps, too.

Involve Your Child(ren)

At the beginning of the school year my daughter did not like how much time I spent on school work. I realized that while I understand how important school is for both of us, she clearly did not.

I sat her down and explained to her in a way I knew she could understand. I told her that if I did a good job in school and graduated I would be able to find a good paying job which meant more money, and it’s something that I enjoy.

I also took her to school on a day we both had off. I was able to give her a quick tour of my classrooms, the recording studios and a treat in the cafeteria. By doing this I feel as if I made it more real for her, that mommy isn’t just disappearing for hours a day, but is actually going to a real place.

And although it sometimes gets frustrating, doing homework together provided my daughter with something she could relate her own school to mine.

Use Time Wisely

Unfortunately there is only so much time in a day and sometimes it feels like it’s not enough. But if you can take note of where you are wasting time, and how to incorporate more productive activities in, you might just be able to get everything done.

For me, I found that my 40 minute bus rides in the morning were the perfect time to check emails and study over my notes.

I have a few television shows I like to keep up with, so I managed to find a way to get things done while watching them. Homework and TV didn’t seem to work, but washing dishes was an easy task to do while watching TV.

And if you can multitask in other ways, it doesn’t hurt!

Don’t Commit To Too Much

There’s enough going on between school and being a parent without all of the added stress of unnecessary responsibilities. You have to learn your limits or you will burn yourself out.

Sometimes you need to make compromises. I’m part of a book club where we read a book every month. It’s something I enjoy, but I realized that in November I just couldn’t commit to it. I had to put it off to focus on my end of semester assignments and tests.

You can slowly add things on as you begin to feel more comfortable and confident in your ability to maintain everything. If you realize that you have spare time and want to get a part time job to help financially, or like myself, volunteer a couple times a month, that’s good. But don’t feel pressured to take on too much, just do what you can and accept that.

Is there anything you would like to add to this list?


  1. I can relate 100% and these are all things that help me stay organized. I’ve even had the same exact convo with my daughter, and she liked the idea of me having more money to spend lol. Another thing that helps me is to have her uniform laid out the night before, her lunch packed, and bookbag by the door. It makes our mornings a million times easier so we can all get to class on time.

    • That is a great suggestion! On nights I feel too tired to prepare I often force myself to remember those awful, hectic mornings when I had to pack lunches and bags while trying to get everything else done!
      Thanks for sharing!