How to be a Good Homeschool Mom on a Bad Homeschool Day?6 min read
Has it been a tough week to homeschool? In fact, has it been a tough week to just be a mom?
Your toddler doesn’t like sleeping by himself. You were up all night with the baby.
The laundry is just piling and piling. The kitchen is a mess.
Your older children can’t seem to stop arguing, like ever!
You are still mentally reminiscing about yesterday’s science lesson that didn’t go as planned and that math problem that your son couldn’t quite get even after going over it ten times.
And as you seat yourself at the breakfast table with a big cup of coffee, you’re wondering how to tackle this new day and continue to homeschool amidst the ongoing storm of things.
Welcome to a bad homeschool day!
And can we remind you that you are not alone?
Yup, that’s right. There are countless other moms and dads out there who are homeschooling and trying to deal with the same pressures and struggles each and every day.
A bad day or a bad week or even a bad month – it’s all part and parcel of living and schooling real, non-fictional human beings!
And boy, does it get tough!
Today we want you to take comfort in the fact that no matter how long you’ve been at this homeschooling gig, everyone falters at some point. Everyone has bad days, some even worse than others.
Human beings are just not perfect. We’re messy and we’re difficult. And because we are this way, we are going to have days, weeks and even months where nothing seems to be going as per plan. And we can’t completely eliminate them!
So, what can we do instead?
Our number one rule of thumb would be this: Don’t try to take on anything that will make anyone (including yourself) cry!
Pretty much everything else stems from this rule of thumb.
On days where you and your kids have the emotional and mental batteries and abilities to take on more challenges, go ahead and do just that!
But not when you are having a bad homeschool day.
And in saying that, we would suggest not completely throwing your homeschool schedule out the window.
Instead, seek to accomplish the same subjects as planned, but maybe with a different approach. Use different methods and ways to approach them – something that won’t make anyone cry or feel like plucking their hair out!
The key is to just keep it simple and have a gentle structure. You will be surprised how amazing this works on a bad homeschool day.
Changing things up a bit is always a good idea. You could
1. Turn on an audiobook
If your home is one that loves listening to stories, but you can’t bear to read aloud, why don’t you go ahead and turn on an audiobook? Something that is light, and that everyone will be interested in listening to. Grab some hot chocolate and get cozy.
2. Play a math board game instead of solving problems on paper
Not everyone loves math and if your kids fall under that category then you can always switch it up on a difficult day. Play a board game instead! Something that will not only be fun but also a fun way to learn a tedious subject.
3. Watch a short science film instead of having a full-blown history or science lesson
Watching an educational documentary or short film related to your lesson is a great idea! This will greatly benefit kids who are visual learners. And as your kids pay attention to the film, you have some time to sort stuff out in your head.
4. Make time for art and craft
Artworks as a wonderful outlet for emotions, thoughts and ideas. Encourage your kids to bring out the paints and the colors and just get creative! You could use some waste from around the house and incorporate it into a mini craft project. Cleaning up after an art and craft project may seem like a task, but it is definitely much easier than struggling to push through a bad homeschool day.
5. Visit a library
On days when you don’t have the energy or the mental battery to get through it like you’d want to, take your kids to a library and let them get lost in the books. They can check out a bunch of different genres and subjects and even borrow something to read later if they like!
6. Phone a friend
If it’s just getting too overwhelming to handle alone, phone up a friend or a family member who can come over to help. If your friend has a kid that she can bring over to play, then that’s even better. As the kids play and learn together, you can sit down and have a much-needed conversation with another adult.
7. Take a walk instead of breaking your head on that worksheet
Taking a walk and spending some time outdoors actually does wonders. Nature is the best teacher for us all. Don’t worry about missing out on the day’s studies because your children will learn plenty just walking into a garden. That worksheet will still be there when you’re back, and tomorrow is another day.
8. Don’t worry about lunch and dinner
If it’s already a bad day at home and in the homeschool, cooking is the last thing on your mind. You could request an older child to cook a meal or just scramble some eggs. Order some takeout or cook something light that you enjoy making.
9. Reduce your chores to the absolute minimum
Maybe you don’t have to clean the fridge today or scrub the sink like you thought you would. You could just focus on getting the bare minimum done with the help of your kids. They could help you do the laundry or the dishes.
10. Don’t give up!
Yes, our final tip is just that. Bad homeschool days will keep coming and going. The important thing is not just struggling through them, but having a healthy, long-term perspective when you’re in the midst of them. Your goal is not to keep in sync with mainstream schools; it is to create a much deeper and more profound environment than what any institution can offer. You want to give your kids your best, but you don’t have to kill yourself in the process. Take it one step at a time, and just make sure nobody is shedding tears on bad days. Trust yourself because we know that you can be a good homeschool mom on a bad homeschool day!