Neil Patrick Harris Jokes He's 'Free' Now That His Twins, 10, Returned to In-Person School
Neil Patrick Harris shares his 10-year-old twins Harper and Gideon with husband David Burtka
Neil Patrick Harris is letting out a sigh of relief.
"Ellen, I'm free!" Harris exclaimed to Ellen DeGeneres, 63, after revealing that his children had resumed in-person learning for the first time since March of last year.
"They're in school all of a sudden. We've been in remote school since March and then the school [recently] opened up," the actor said. "As of last week, they were able to be [back] — with all the protocols, the masks, the six feet apart, getting tested all the time — but they're in actual school."
Harris admitted that while he's happy to have his children out of the house for part of the day, he still misses "them so much."
Earlier this year, the How I Met Your Mother star spoke to PEOPLE about his time at home amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and gave details about his children's remote school set-up.
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"They each have their own little school room and their own key lights and their own headphones," he said in January. "I feel like they're in the school of the future — in the present! But they don't get to go to gymnastics classes, swimming and a lot of the social activities and play dates that they are used to."
Despite the many challenges that remote schooling and self-isolating brings, Harris admitted that the additional time at home has helped his family strengthen their bond.
"I think it's made the kids closer to each other and made us become closer to them in a much more nuanced way," he explained to PEOPLE earlier this year. "So as challenging as it's been, I really appreciate the good things that have come from it."
The toughest part for the dads was "coming up with new and inventive things to amuse" their kids with.
"As a parent, we don't want them to be constantly attached to an iPad, and yet with few options, that's kind of all they want to do," Harris confessed at the time. "That's challenging because I really like video games. I'm torn between being the stern taskmaster that says, 'Nay those screens, you must paint!,' and being the father that says, 'Wait, what's this cool new game, show me.'"