How to Fix a Bad Homeschool Day

By Holly Giles | homeschooling

how to fix a bad homeschool day

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Mondays seem to be the do-over day for homeschool in our house.  When the week before did not go as planned, Monday is always around the corner to make a fresh start.

Today was no different. Last week we had several fun distractions that kept us from staying on our homeschool tasks and I spent time over the weekend getting our homeschooling in order to begin a new week.

We found a good deal on Friday, at Goodwill, on a homeschool desk for Grant. He had outgrown his little one and it was time to make the change. He seemed excited about it, and I had his desk all set up and ready for the new week.  We were going to start a unit on Peter Rabbit together.  Grayson has had math issues, so I planned time to sit with him and go over what he was missing.  I also had plans to go outside and do watercolor paintings after we read our books on Monet. Apparently, my hopes were set too high.


The morning began just fine, a few groggy kids over breakfast, but not unusual.  I let them know, would be doing homeschool lessons in the morning and then they were going to visit with their grandparents for the afternoon.  They love going to Nana and Papa’s so of course, they want to skip lessons and get going!
Grant has been struck by the reading bug, finally, and wants to read to anyone who will listen. He corralled our dog into homeschooling and did storytime for him on the dining room floor.  This was great, a captive audience so I could focus on Crockett for a few minutes.  After that, we headed outside for our watercolor painting. It was a beautiful morning and I decided that I would paint with them and enjoy the time.
Right off Grant got mad with the paint. It was not doing what he wanted it to do and he didn’t like the color.  Trying to convince an eight-year-old who is steaming out his ears that art is a personal experience and doesn’t have to look like the painting we are styling ours after, was a futile effort!  He was done.

We packed it up when Grayson was finished and moved to table work inside.  Grant refused to do his math. He didn’t understand why he would have to do that every day! Why can’t he just play?  Well, the speech comes out about education and being able to read and write, and how our family doesn’t think we do enough “school” like other kids, and well I sound like a broken record, again.

The Spiral Down

I check on Grayson and he is still staring at his math that has not been touched in 30 minutes.  That was the beginning of the downward spiral. No need to go on about how the rest of the homeschool time went, you probably have been there. I’ll just say that it was one of those times that the yellow school bus was looking appealing!

Why do these kinds of days bother me so much? I think it all comes down to the pressure I put on myself and my kids to get things done.  It usually happens when I think we are behind in math or language arts. I have high hopes that we will cram two weeks’ worth of stuff into a week, and then when everyone melts down, I give up and think homeschooling is not worth the stress I put on myself.

The Truth

Thankfully, God knows my heart.  He uses these opportunities to stretch and mold me into a better mom when I take deep breaths and not overreact as I have in the past. Working on my patience seems to be my best subject!  Giving of myself is my next subject of study.  Yes, there are times when I would just like to do something I want to do. I would love to have a whole day to do crafts or sew, yet that will never happen without fifty interruptions.

Accepting the season of life I am in, and truly what a gift it is, is far better than a sewing project.  Although I tend to forget that when I have swept the mud from the kitchen floor for the fourth time in a day, and randomly find worms in one of my china dishes.  They were apparently in a holding bowl until their new home could be prepared.  Yes, the gifts I will miss when my boys are all grown up.


So weary moms, I find solace in the fact that many of you reading this know EXACTLY what I am feeling this Monday.  Let’s all give homeschooling Mondays a break.  They tend to crack and fall apart under so much pressure of holding up the whole family’s educational future!

Let me know how you handle a less-than-perfect Monday.  I need to go get the escaped worm off the kitchen counter before it finds our dinner. Gifts weary mom, gifts.

how to fix a bad homeschool day


About the Author

Holly Giles is a wife, mother, and storyteller. As an author and Florida Master Naturalist, she writes about heritage homemaking skills, motherhood, and why Florida offers the best hidden natural gems to explore as a family.