We had a good morning. Math was done with limited casualties. Bible and reading times were enjoyed by all. Brunch was strawberry, banana pancakes with sausage. 

Then afternoon arrived.

The teething baby started fussing. Big brother found random ways to disobey. Little sis took up screaming fits will the other middle went to great lengths to annoy her. And a migraine set in.

A meltdown afternoon was underway…

As a homeschool mom with young children, it’s absolutely necessary to have a game plan for the days that aren’t going as planned because these days will come! 

It’s also critical to have built in “breaks” for everyone during the day. A time where mommy and babes alike can find some peace and sanctuary after spending time learning and living together.

These breaks will allow for that time to recharge and prevent some of those meltdown days from occurring.

Let me share a few meltdown day prevention tips:

1.) Pray! Unity, love and peace are such a clear spiritual battle. I wish I remembered this more instead of trying to fix things myself.

2.) Rotate between learning times and play times: Sitting down for several hours of school at once is not realistic with little ones. 

Sprinkle learning throughout the day along with lots of play, outside time and unstructured learning!

3.) Limit screen time: Eliminating any screen time in the morning has been hugely helpful with this issue. 

For some reason screen time totally kills creativity and healthy play for my kiddos, so I’ve had to change how and when we use it.

4.) Establish daily quiet times: Even if you’re kids are beyond napping ages I think it’s helpful and healthy to have a quiet time in the middle of the day. 

What this looks like can very! I’ll share some ideas for that in another post.

5.) Fill their emotional tanks: Kids need to feel mommy’s love so they can share love themselves. 

I’m often amazed that if I just spend a little time reading, playing or coloring with the kids their attitudes change. Preempt emotional depletion by setting times to connect with your littles in loving ways.

Say you’ve done all that and the meltdown day still happens. What then? How do you survive the mayhem?

Here are some things I like to try when the chaos ensues:

1.) Alone play time: Sometimes it helps to break the funk by splitting kids up into separate locations for play for a half hour. 

We call these “alone play times.” They’re not technically a time-out; they’re an opportunity for kids to be reminded that playing together is a privilege and not a right.

2.) Change scenery: I had an older, wiser homeschool mom once tell me “you’re much less likely to kill your kids in public.” And it shocks me that getting out clears the air somehow and they’re not as grumpy! 

But changing scenery doesn’t always need to be leaving the house. Sometimes just going to a new room in your house or going outside is a mood changer.

3.) Call or text a friend: Moms don’t want to be viewed as whiners. But sharing your struggles with “coworkers/other homeschool moms” can be helpful! Women often work things through and find solutions by verbalizing their challenges with others.

Find another mom or two who can be a sounding board for you on the bad days. Commit to praying for each other and offer each other encouragement along the way!
Moms and their kids spend a lot of time together as homeschoolers and not every moment of that will be pleasant time. 

But just because something is hard doesn’t mean you’re doing it wrong.

God is doing a good work in you and your children, even in the midst of meltdown days ❤️