How to Create a Pleasant Atmosphere
Nothing is worse than trying to homeschool feuding kids who argue over everything.
Suzy has the best spot at the table. Why in the world do you expect them to complete word problems, they’re too hard! How can you educate your kids in an angry and hostile environment? You must create a pleasant atmosphere in your homeschool.
Implement a Daily Routine
The first step is to ensure you have a schedule or routine so everyone knows what they’re to do. You don’t need a stringent or strict schedule for your family. A gentle routine works just fine.
However, a detailed schedule can give you the base for a routine. This prevents you from deciding you can do chores, homeschool, go to the park, and spend 2 hours reading aloud every morning before lunch. I don’t know about you, but my morning doesn’t allow me to do all that!
Sit down today and plan what needs to happen when in your household and homeschool.
- What do you need to do each day? This should be a complete list of everything including bedtime routines.
- What chores need to be done? Write down the tasks needed to keep the house tidy.
- What activities do you have? Consider your activities outside the house. For instance, is there swim team practice every morning or do you only have a co-op that meets once a week?
- Do you have a morning time, when should it occur? Sometimes first thing in the morning isn’t the best time.
Create a simple flow for your days. Print your schedule or routine and post it where everyone can see it. This post offers more guidance for creating the perfect schedule for your family.
The first two weeks it’s vital to diligently follow the schedule allowing the entire family to adjust before you begin making adjustments.
Nothing’s worse than your kids asking which schedule you’re following today!
Simplify Your Life
Are you trying to do too much? It’s hard to be calm and pleasant when you’re running around trying to keep all the balls in the air. Take a good look at everything you’re doing.
Begin with the homeschool. Can you condense the number of subjects you’re doing? For instance, copy work teaches spelling, grammar, and writing all at the same time. Geography folds easily into the study of history. Have your children write about what they’re learning in history or science.
After all, while there are many wonderful programs available these days, we can’t do them all.
Take a good look at the number of subjects and curricula you’re using and eliminate the busy work.
Many activities tout that they offer your children a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. But we still can’t do them all.
Say No to most of the wonderful programs, subjects, and activities available. This will leave you able to say Yes to those opportunities that best meet the needs of your family.
We can’t have a pleasant atmosphere when we’re dashing around town, so slow down and enjoy life with your children.
Don’t Homeschool in Filth
You can’t have a pleasant atmosphere in a filthy house.
When there’s no table space available it’s impossible to homeschool. After all, where will you enjoy art projects, build castles for history, or complete science experiments?
Relaxing is difficult when you’re sitting down to read aloud to the kids and seeing laundry tossed around the living room, candy wrappers hiding under chairs, and dust bunnies lounging under desks. But how do you stay on top of things when homeschooling?
Take a few minutes each day and tidy the house as a family. It’s a big job for one person, but manageable for a group. Do morning chores before breakfast and evening chores after dinner.
If you don’t have a good system, consider picking up Motivated Moms. It’s an easy checklist of household chores to keep the house clean.
Create a pleasant atmosphere in your home by keeping the house tidy.
End the Feuding
Children love to fight over who gets to sit where.
I’ve decided that children would rather bicker with their siblings than complete their math, grammar, or spelling lessons. However, spelling and grammar still need to be done, to say nothing of math.
Kids can’t spend their days arguing.
The solution is to assign spots for your children to study. Assign one to sit at your desk and the other to sit at the kitchen table. Perhaps a child homeschools at one end of the dining room table while another sits at the other end.
If your children fight about who gets to homeschool where – assert your authority and assign seats.
The house will be much more peaceful as a result.
Have your kids ever argued over pencils?
It happened at my house. A battle erupted between three children over whose pencil was whose. Seriously, the kids were feuding over pencils!
I’m still certain they were trying to avoid math.
A few days later I ran across a box of #2 pencils in four different colors and inspiration struck.
Color code the school supplies!
Color coding prevented all sorts of arguments. It meant that each child has their own set of scissors, compasses, and protractors. The children no longer searched the house looking for a ruler. They had one lounging among their school supplies.
And I still color code as many school supplies as possible.
The point is that a pleasant atmosphere requires planning.
You need to know what you’re doing. You need a plan to end the sibling bickering and keep the house tidy. A plan that will give you the time to enjoy history projects, read-aloud to your kids, and take long nature hikes together.
And you’ll have a pleasing home in which to educate your children.
What is your favorite tip to end the feuding and create a pleasant atmosphere in your homeschool?
Love everything about this! So many great tips!
As a new home schooling family this year I REALLY needed to hear these tips. In fact, I often find myself thinking about something I have read on your blog during the day with the kids…thank you for all the inspiration you share.
Thank you, Julie! I’m thrilled you’ve been inspired by my writing. 🙂
They’re simple things and I think that’s why it’s easy to overlook them. We’ve had some renovations in progress for a few months & I’m looking forward to getting things back in order. I just don’t function well with stuff everywhere. I read your post on cleaning the kitchen just when I was thinking I should fill the sinks with bleach & soak them overnight!
The simple things are really easy to overlook, aren’t they. 🙂
This is such a great encouragement! You are so right about the dirty house…just makes me irritable. We’ve tried to get back into a clean routine and it has really helped our day run smoother!
Cleaning routines are life savers! I’ve sometimes salvaged a week by simply spending a day getting the house in order. Everyone studies so much better when the house is clean. 🙂
Great advice, Sara. It’s SO important for us to simplify our homeschools. And to remember that we are in charge of our curriculum and not the other way around. I have a friend who got a chance to take her family on a trip to Washington DC. They had an amazing time and learned a ton. But, when they got home, she was overwhelmed with trying to get back on track with homeschooling. I reminded her about all of the learning that went on while they were gone. But it was hard for her to deal with the fact that they had “missed” a week of learning. In my opinion, they learned A TON more on the trip than they ever would have with a week of book work. We need to keep our priorities straight so that we can have a more pleasant atmosphere!
You’re right, Michelle! We do need to keep our priorities straight and remember there are many more ways to learn than just from books. And sometimes the biggest and most important lessons are the ones learned away from the kitchen table. 🙂
COLOR CODING!!! You are so amazing!!! My kids fight over the weirdest things. Thanks for sharing!
Kids do fight over the weirdest things especially when work is involved! My thought is it’s an avoidance technique. 😉
Simplifying and implementing a routine make all the difference in the world!
It really does make a huge difference! I know my homeschool always flows better when things are kept on a simple routine. 🙂
I love the idea of color coding the supplies. Even though my kids each have their own pencil pouch, they’re constantly bickering over whose stuff is whose because they fail to put it away as soon as they’re finished with it. Sigh.
That’s exactly what my kids were doing, Shelly. It drove me batty! Color coding the supplies ended quite a bit of the bickering. 🙂
Thanks for this!
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