I would like to thing that I’m the only one who has no good, very bad homeschool days. I’d like to think that none of you ever let things get so bad that you question your decision to homeschool. I hope you’ve never gazed longingly at the school bus as it drove by wishing your loud, rowdy, whiny, argumentative kids were on it.
The truth is, though, that I know you can relate. I know you’ve had those days when you just wanted to crawl back in bed and declare a do-over! Or, you’ve wanted your kids to crawl back in bed. Bad days, unfortunately are a part of life. I know that you, like me, have had days where tempers flared, attitudes needed adjusting, and hearts needed to be addressed. So, what do you do?
The Very Bad Days of Homeschooling
Talk it out. Some days in my house are bad, because of small misunderstandings. Talk through what’s causing the frustrations, and see if the misunderstanding can be resolved. Deal with any hurt feelings while the conversation is going on so no bad attitudes or hurt feelings linger.
Declare a time out. When voices are raised and tampers flare, I will send a child to their room for a time out. Really, it’s a time out for both of us. I like to argue, and so do my kids! So, if my kids are arguing, I’m going to argue back. If I send them to their room, the argument is over. We all have a chance to regroup and refresh. Then, we can come back together and (hopefully) have a discussion that is calm and able to reach a resolution.
Change of scenery. Sometimes things get tough, because we’re burnt out or bored. Oftentimes, taking a walk around the neighborhood or a quick trip to the library can help remedy that.
Celebrate the little things. Math and grammar (parsing sentences to identify parts of speech) can get rough in my house. Those are Emma’s toughest subjects. I try hard to be very vocal about each lesson she does well. I give high-fives and lots of praise. She still loves getting stickers on her papers.
If instead, I focus on what she didn’t do well, I hurt her feelings. She feels dumb and dreads each subject. That’s never a good vibe in our homeschool days.
Take a break. There have been a few times in the past few years, when I’ve just plain needed a break! The beauty of homeschooling is that I have the freedom and flexibility to take one. If the kids are fighting, whining, and too fidgety to focus, it’s time for a break. If I’m sleepy, grumpy, and burnt out, it’s time for a break. Whether it’s an hour, a day, or a week, it may be just the thing to make your homeschool survive!
How do you deal with the no-good, very bad days of homeschooling? What helps you push through?
This post is part of my ABC’s of Homeschooling series! To read the entire series, visit my ABCs of Homeschooling page. I’ll add to this page each day as the posts go live.