Is this normal? - Mothering Forums
Learning at School > Is this normal?
deesmomma's Avatar deesmomma 12:15 AM 08-25-2010
Okay, I actually hate that question but it was the shortest subject I could come up with. I guess more of what I'm wondering is, is this to be expected?

My kids just started public school, kindergarten and 1st grade. They've never been to a pre-k, daycare, or anything like that. My 5 year old, while not super clingy exactly, requires SO MUCH attention. And what I've noticed is that this, along with other bad behavior, has SKY ROCKETED since she started school. At school she's a peach, she never gets in trouble but just as soon as we pick her up in the afternoon she starts in with the whining, complaining, back talk, general meanness to her sister, etc. Kind of like the "needs a nap" attitude, except they take a nap at school around 1, so it seems unlikely. And she really enjoys school, so its not that.

Has this happened to anyone else? I'm sure its just transitioning, but she's making me kind of nuts. lol

eepster's Avatar eepster 12:45 AM 08-25-2010
It is very common for kids to be grouchy after school for a couple of months after they first start.

When DS first started school he would have huge temper tantrums afterwards each day over the dumbest little things. After an amazingly bad one at Trader Joe's (since it happened while we were leaving, a clerk ended up taking my cart to the car for me and putting the bags in my trunk while I carried DS to the car then sat in the backseat with him) I stopped running even the briefest and simplest errands after school.

Adjusting to school is just really hard work. Just plan to keep everything really low key and simple for a few weeks till she has adjusted. Go straight home and have a nice snack.
Heavenly's Avatar Heavenly 03:21 PM 08-25-2010
Another vote for totally normal. Don't try and do anything at all after school, just go home and head straight to quiet time so everyone can decompress. Have a healthy snack ready and then give them some down time. My kids usually watch tv for a bit when they come home to give them some time to shut their brains off for awhile.
2cutiekitties's Avatar 2cutiekitties 05:13 PM 08-25-2010
Quote:
Originally Posted by eepster View Post
It is very common for kids to be grouchy after school for a couple of months after they first start.

When DS first started school he would have huge temper tantrums afterwards each day over the dumbest little things. I stopped running even the briefest and simplest errands after school.

Adjusting to school is just really hard work. Just plan to keep everything really low key and simple for a few weeks till she has adjusted. Go straight home and have a nice snack.
This. I am going through this with my preschooler and it is crazy how cranky he is after school. Ay Ay Ay ay!!!!
Lisa1970's Avatar Lisa1970 08:50 PM 08-25-2010
Last year, my 6 yr old was 5 and in kinder. He would go to school and be Mr Perfect. Then he would come home and scream and throw tantrums and be a holy terror.

School is stressful and I think they reflect that when they come home. It is very very normal.
GuildJenn's Avatar GuildJenn 11:32 PM 08-25-2010
The Secret of Parenting talks about this. Basically, the kids hold it together all day at school - not just 'cause it's stressful (which a new situation would be) but also to learn, to deal with peers, and to be 'grown up' (for their age).

Then they get home where it's safe and WHAM all the bad behaviour comes out. He calls it the baby self, which isn't my favourite way to put it but, whatever.

So yes, normal. I agree with the low-key home at night either.
Sustainer's Avatar Sustainer 04:18 PM 08-26-2010
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lisa1970
Last year, my 6 yr old was 5 and in kinder. He would go to school and be Mr Perfect. Then he would come home and scream and throw tantrums and be a holy terror.
Same goes for my son. My philosophy is that if he's going to behave well in one place and not behave well in the other place, I'd rather he not behave well for me and behave well in school.
meemee's Avatar meemee 04:25 PM 08-26-2010
oh absolutely. you will see this in K and first two. not so much in second.

i know for my dd the hardest part of K was 6 hours of just sitting and behaving. she had to 'break free'. she is not hte child who goes home immediately and does hw. she needs a break from school completely. a couple of her friends i know go home finish hw and then go on with their day.
Geofizz's Avatar Geofizz 04:45 PM 08-26-2010
Quote:
Originally Posted by GuildJenn View Post
Then they get home where it's safe and WHAM all the bad behaviour comes out. He calls it the baby self, which isn't my favourite way to put it but, whatever.


Tantrums in kindergarten went for 7 weeks, and she eventually got the rules and routine and hang of being a kindergartener. In addition to working so hard to figure it all out, learning in an academic setting all of a sudden, there is a huge amount to learn about just what school is.

We also move bedtime up by an hour during that time, 15 minutes a week until we found the right time. First grade was similar, though not as intense.

My 8 year old is now in third grade. Even now, since the meet-the-teacher night and through the first several days of schools, she's been climbing into my lap and snuggling and asking to be rocked like a baby.
amma_mama's Avatar amma_mama 05:32 PM 08-26-2010
Yep, perfectly normal. DD is still like that at times. She has done day care, pre-K, kindergarten and now summer camp. The same for the first few weeks of each new situation - much excitement, learning new routines, etc. can all wear a kid out, especially when they are on their "best" behavior all day. Once in the safe haven, they tend to let a bit loose. It gets better with DD once she is more settled in to the new routine.

This too shall pass. Take it easy these first weeks in terms of afternoon/evening activities to let them recoup, get all their pent up feelings out, etc.
Emmeline II's Avatar Emmeline II 08:29 PM 08-26-2010
My ds has had behavior issues and had a horrible year in K. Now he is in 1st and while on meds and apparently doing fine in school, has had several after school tantrums this week.
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