About CELFFaculty, Fellows and StaffCalendar of EventsResearch & Working PapersWork-Family ResourcesHome

Working Parents’ Weekday Activities at Home

Jeffrey S. Good

UCLA Sloan Center on Everyday Lives of Families
Working Paper No. 96


When the professional workday ends for working parents the busy “second shift” at home begins (Hochschild, 1989; 1997). After work, parents have to pick up kids, take them to practices and play dates, bring them home, help them with homework, get dinner prepared, clean the house, check the mail, as well as a long list of other activities. In many ways, this “second shift” is complicated and a form of skilled work. Based on coding of approximately 800 hours of video-recorded family interactions of 2 weekdays for 32 families, analyses in this paper demonstrate the amount of time parents spend on different activities, including childcare, cleaning and housework, children’s homework, meal preparation, and leisure activities. It is seen that in most cases, mothers spend more time engaged in activities, primarily due to the fact that mothers overwhelmingly return home first after work. However, it is seen that during the time that fathers are home, they spend a proportionately equal amount of time involved in activities as mothers.

Home | About Us | Faculty, Fellows & Staff | Calendar of Events
Research & Working Papers | Work-Family Resources