Home News BBC dad talks work from home with kids during coronavirus pandemic

BBC dad talks work from home with kids during coronavirus pandemic

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If there’s one person any parent working from home amid the coronavirus pandemic can relate to, it’s the BBC dad.

Robert Kelly, a political science professor in South Korea, was hilariously interrupted by playful children while doing an interview from his home with the BBC.

The video went viral in 2017, and now Kelly and his family are back as they continue to parent and work from home while people around the world similarly practice social distancing to slow the spread of the new coronavirus.

“It’s pretty tough for us,” Kelly said in a heartwarming and candid interview on the BBC alongside his wife, Jung-a Kim, and children, Marion and James.

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“Employers who have employees with kids like our age, it can be very, very difficult. I get maybe two hours of work done a day, maybe three with this,” he said, pointing to his restless daughter.

“They’ve got nothing to do. They’re climbing the walls. They’re are only so many games you can play and puzzles you can do before they just kind of, you know, run around.”  

Kelly and his family are based in Busan, a city in southeastern South Korea, a country that global public health leaders have praised for its swift response to the outbreak of COVID-19, the disease caused by the new coronavirus.

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The country has seen 9,241 known cases with 131 known deaths, according to a Johns Hopkins University tracker.

The country “flattened the curve” without widespread lockdowns and instead applied a wide-ranging testing and contact tracing strategy along with isolating suspected cases in designated facilities rather than in homes or hospitals, World Health Organization Director-General Tedros Adhanom said last week.

Speaking with the BBC, Jung-a Kim described taking her children for short periods of time to the playground or on hikes to let them release energy while still staying far away from others.

“This is springtime in Korea so we try to go see the flowers and trees and they can shout and scream,” she added.

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In the original viral video, when Kelly was being interviewed and his family unexpectedly barged in, Jung-a Kim was seen rushing into the room to pull the children out.

Follow USA TODAY’s Ryan Miller on Twitter @RyanW_Miller