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What to do when the kids whine and fight and won't do their homeschool work?
by Beverley Paine, 2023
Kids whine. Maybe not ALL kids, but I reckon 98% of them do. Maybe it is a part of childhood development, a necessary stage of life???
What worked for me when I hit bumps in the road such as these when my long suffering kids were young was have a tantrum. Yep. Chuck a tantie. If they can do it, so can I!!!
Lots of "I hate this! I'm no good at this! I don't know what I'm doing! I don't want to do this anymore! I shouldn't have to do this! You can't make me! This is boring! This is stupid! This doesn't make sense! Nothing I do is ever any good for you! I don't know why I put up with this! I've had enough! I'm not going to do this anymore!"
And maybe finish by throwing something (not valuable) on the floor or slamming the bedroom door.
Or, you could do what the best self-development healthy life memes tell you do - take deep breaths, go for walk, do yoga or tai chi, scented candle, ground yourself in nature etc.
Or, you could balance the books, do a budget, clean the house from top to bottom, have a long hot bath, binge of takeaway food or do batch cooking and store a week's worth of meals in the freezer...
Heck, it's only homeschooling. Shelve it for a bit. Take a week off. Put it out of your mind for a while. Focus on YOUR hobbies. Do what YOU like. Seriously. Let the kids take care of their own time for a while. Tell them they're welcome to come watch you while you paint, write, garden, do yoga, cook, play computer games, whatever. That you might let them join in. That you might be open to suggestions to do an activity they want to do with them, go for a walk with them, go to the park or whatever with them. Maybe.
It's okay. Seriously, it is. Homeschool life will get back on track, eventually. And the surprising thing that always happens is that the kids will have still learned (something, anything) while homeschooling wasn't happening. Because that's how learning happens. All the time. Just not what we want or expect perhaps, but it's doing it. Honestly it is.
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Beverley Paine with her children, and their home educated children, relaxing at home.
Together with the support of my family, my aim is to help parents educate their children in stress-free, nurturing environments. In addition to building and maintaing this website, I continue to create and manage local and national home educating networks, help to organise conferences and camps, as well as write for, edit and produce newsletters, resource directories and magazines. I am an active supporter of national, state, regional and local home education groups.
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We began educating our children in 1985, when our eldest was five. In truth, we had helped them learn what they need to learn since they were born. I am a passionate advocate of allowing children to learn unhindered by unnecessary stress and competition, meeting developmental needs in ways that suit their individual learning styles and preferences. Ours was a homeschooling, unschooling and natural learning family! There are hundreds of articles on this site to help you build confidence as a home educating family. We hope that your home educating adventure is as satisfying as ours was! Beverley Paine
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