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So I don't believe in beating children...truly I don't. But it seems like those that do have children who care - or maybe I'm just seeing a grass is greener thing... but my siblings and i would NEVER act as my kids do...

We homeschool... and we tend to take long breaks around Christmas and its way more sneaky "school" than usual. It is now February, and I cannot get my kids back on track with ANYTHING.. . (school or home stuff)

They don't listen to me when I say its time to do ANYTHING... an example:

They really wanted to watch the ProBowl last night, but it was on too late... so we taped it. I put out the schedule for today... (we stick to a sort of routine but its always posted by the time they wake up). TOdays... get dressed, clean the house (we usually do that sat morning, but i went out), memory work, independent work, probowl.

I'm trying not to micromanage and let them get the idea... but not only did they not clean... they made MORE of a mess! I finally got the house clean enough, called them down for memory work and it was excuse after excuse... I need a drink, I have to pee - one of them just opened a book and started to read... I got mad because they coudln't concentrate for THIRTY minutes... and they did not care... just went on trying to play around me (they are not babies.. 6 3/4, 8 3/4, 10 3/4) And we've been doing memory work in some form or another for a lONG time!

I threw them outside. I just don't want to even be in the same house with them right now. They're playing and having a wonderful time.

When I was younger... if my mother had kicked me out of the house because she was that mad with me... I'd be miserable trying to figure out how to fix it and get back in her good graces... my kids? laughing and having a snowball fight...

How do I fix this??? How do I even start???

(They were super excited about the pro-bowl... I'm not going to let them watch it obviously, but I really doubt they'll actually care...)
 

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Have you read this: http://www.ahaparenting.com/blog/How_To__stop_yelling_at_kids

I know you're not worried about yelling, but the article has good nuggets on how to recenter yourself and reconnect when parents and kids aren't getting along. This article has sure inspired me, for I have a short temper. So hard to find that balance when you have a bunch of personalities always together.

Hang in there, let the snow day happen, and the flock will come back to the roost. :)
 

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So I don't believe in beating children...truly I don't. But it seems like those that do have children who care - or maybe I'm just seeing a grass is greener thing... but my siblings and i would NEVER act as my kids do...

We homeschool... and we tend to take long breaks around Christmas and its way more sneaky "school" than usual. It is now February, and I cannot get my kids back on track with ANYTHING.. . (school or home stuff)

They don't listen to me when I say its time to do ANYTHING... an example:

They really wanted to watch the ProBowl last night, but it was on too late... so we taped it. I put out the schedule for today... (we stick to a sort of routine but its always posted by the time they wake up). TOdays... get dressed, clean the house (we usually do that sat morning, but i went out), memory work, independent work, probowl.

I'm trying not to micromanage and let them get the idea... but not only did they not clean... they made MORE of a mess! I finally got the house clean enough, called them down for memory work and it was excuse after excuse... I need a drink, I have to pee - one of them just opened a book and started to read... I got mad because they coudln't concentrate for THIRTY minutes... and they did not care... just went on trying to play around me (they are not babies.. 6 3/4, 8 3/4, 10 3/4) And we've been doing memory work in some form or another for a lONG time!

I threw them outside. I just don't want to even be in the same house with them right now. They're playing and having a wonderful time.

When I was younger... if my mother had kicked me out of the house because she was that mad with me... I'd be miserable trying to figure out how to fix it and get back in her good graces... my kids? laughing and having a snowball fight...

How do I fix this??? How do I even start???

(They were super excited about the pro-bowl... I'm not going to let them watch it obviously, but I really doubt they'll actually care...)
You are so fortunate. You have three children who play outside, who like each other enough that they play together happily in the snow! How wonderful.

I don't know what memory work is. Are they learning times tables, or learning to recite texts? I do teach and I've done a lot of home-based kid enrichment teaching, but I don't homeschool and I really cannot offer any advice. I have one very mellow kid who has grown up into someone who is pretty good about doing homework and chores. He would totally cry if I got mad at him. I only wanted to offer a grass-is-always-greener perspective. Your children sound great!

Of course the cleaning thing is a big pain. I try to frame all chores as preparation for adult responsibility. My son is really into games, so we try to think of chores/cleaning as "leveling up" with skills. It doesn't make him love to clean, but then again, cleaning isn't part of his school day, so it's manageable.
 

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Maybe that was too much "routine" for the day? Maybe start back smaller? Not sure what you mean by "clean the house" but mine are 14, 12 and almost 11 and they would struggle to clean the house unless I gave them something specific and small to do. They HATE if we clean the whole house in one day.

And maybe move lessons to another location? Memory work on the couch or under a fort they built. Half way through let them run out and play and get the wiggles out.. then come back in and work some more? I dunno, that was always the beauty of homeschooling to me. We could scrap things that didn't work, change things up or be creative in how we did them. I liked routine.. but it didn't often work for my son. I only got to homeschool him for a few years but he told me recently how much freedom he didn't realize he had when he was homeschooling and how he kind of missed it (but he also wants to stay in high school and not come back home).

Good luck. I think we all go through those growing pains as we try to get back into a routine after being out of one for so long. Take it slow and be flexible and I hope things settle down soon. :)
 

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I'd suggest using some small rewards (stickers, etc.) in order to get them to do their school work. Use a variety of methods for memory work- such as games, fun worksheets, etc. (which can be found online) to help keep them engaged. If you can, try to keep to a regular schedule. That way, they know what is expected of them during that time period. The "chores" should follow this same routine with a checklist/chart of what needs to be done each day or every other day for each person. Again, the rewards could be helpful (earning so many points or stickers gains them something). That way, if they don't earn them, there is no argument- they just don't get the reward. I think this is a better way of learning because real life works like that- if you don't work hard, you don't get the reward (either internal or external).
 

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. (we stick to a sort of routine but its always posted by the time they wake up). TOdays... get dressed, clean the house (we usually do that sat morning, but i went out), memory work, independent work, probowl.

A routine means doing the same things in the same order. You decided to start the day with something that was not part of the regular weekday routine, and you found out that it didn't work. Rather than posting the schedule for the day before they get up, figure out what you want the routine to be, post it once, and then follow it. It will most likely be bumpy at first, but after a week or two, they will fall into the routine -- if YOU are sticking to the routine.



At that age, we cleaned with a timer. I put on perky music, made a list of jobs that could be done in about 10 minutes, everybody picked which job they wanted, and then I set the timer for 10 minutes and every one worked on their chosen job for 10 minutes. When the timer went off, we reconvened, picked new jobs, and so on.


When I was younger... if my mother had kicked me out of the house because she was that mad with me... I'd be miserable trying to figure out how to fix it and get back in her good graces... my kids? laughing and having a snowball fight...

your kids know that you love them unconditionally. They know that you can get mad and still love them. It does make it harder to control their behavior, but it means that they have a solid foundation for self love and for relationships with other people. They have more immunity to peer pressure, and they are unlikely to get into a relationship with someone who is manipulative or abusive. Yes, I know that it makes them sort of a PITA at times, but in the long run, it really is for the best.


Your kids sound really normal and not like jerks. I wonder if part of it is homeschooling burn out, and if may be you could get some feedback about that on the homeschooling board.
 

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C'mon, everyone needs to vent sometimes, what better place than behind a screen name? And everyone acts like a jerk sometimes, even cute little kids. ;)

What's your homeschool routine like? Do you use the same curriculum/method with all three? If the situation you describe happens regularly (and not just after-vacation blahs) changing things up might help a lot.
I hope you have a better day today!
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
your kids know that you love them unconditionally. They know that you can get mad and still love them. It does make it harder to control their behavior, but it means that they have a solid foundation for self love and for relationships with other people. They have more immunity to peer pressure, and they are unlikely to get into a relationship with someone who is manipulative or abusive. Yes, I know that it makes them sort of a PITA at times, but in the long run, it really is for the best.

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I really needed to hear that...thank you!

Thank you for ALL of the advice! (And, I would never call them jerks to people in real life, but I really needed you to understand how TERRIBLE their behavior yesterday was...)

Today has been much better! We sat down last night and talked about what basic good behavior means... and I've told them that I'm done going above and beyond until they re-master common courtesy and gratefulness... It hasn't been perfect, but we're at least going in the right direction...

:)
 

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I have gone to friends and said my kids/kid is being a jerk, brat, pain in the derriere. We are human, and it's better to vent than to let frustration build up!!!

This sounds like one of those situations where you need to put on your "I'm the boss" pants on, bite your lip, and have a week of being really stern and get the kids back on track. Good luck! I know my advice is sub par, but others have given some good advice.
 
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Im a high school teacher, and trust me - discipline does not usually "just happen." Kids are kids. They need an immediate small consequence when they dont do what they should. There is a book called 1-2-3 Magic that my friend with a toddler plus twins recommended highly to me. When I read it, it was essentially the same as the classroom management system that I use. The basic idea is that kids have 2 warnings to fix bad behaviors before getting a small consequence, but it also talks about the importance of and how to build solid positive relationships with them, and how to get kids to start good behaviors (the 1-2-3 thing doesnt work as well for starting behaviors as it does for stopping them). Nagging, begging, reminding over and over, yelling, etc, simply do not work even on good kids, because they are kids - you have to back up your requests/demands with a reasonable consequence.

If you prefer a more touchy feely approach, this other book also seemed like an excellent system, and one that is geared towards really teaching kids empathy and self monitoring. It definitely seems a bit more complex/artful in it's actual application though. The other book is called No-Drama Discipline.

And if the kids have gotten used to getting away with things, be prepared that it will take some time and consistency, and probably a few rounds of them really testing your consistency, for any new behavior system to work. Dont give up too quickly!
 

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Let the KIDS make the schedule.
YOU prefer to clean, etc first and do longer learning sessions
THEY may prefer learning first and more often in shorter sessions.
Tell them what the options are and your parameters and then ask THEM to make a schedule for two days each week (and you still control the other three.)
The empowerment will help them and help YOU Realize why some things aren't clicking. But you do have to let go and let them decide for those two days. You may be surprised.
Assoc watch the ProBowl WITH them. It makes no sense to deprive them of something that has nothing to do with chores. The only natural consequence of chores not being done is a dirty house and a mad/sad mom. That's enough.
You will have great bonding if you watch with them that will carry over into some of your requests.

Beating kids makes them FEAR you, not respect and LOVE you. It only alters behavior temporarily and when you see them.
Plus eventually they will beat each other or you bc you will have shown them it's ok to hit another person.
 

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We've definitely been through times like this. I think it comes in waves, and I haven't found the slightest pattern. At the worst, I don't think they respond to either positive or negative reinforcement. They just do what they want to do. And I have had times when I thought exactly what you're saying: If my mom told us to do stuff, we did it, because we were afraid of her. No disrespect to my late mom, but I choose not to parent by fear.

Then there are times when I notice I just have to say the word, and they go do the animal chores after school. Once or twice, one even didn't wait till I told her. I don't think my parenting changed. I think kids (and adults) just go through different phases and seasons. Sometimes we're good at managing our behavior, sometimes we do better at remembering to take others' needs into account. Other times we (at least I) are a mess. I think the only thing to do is just keep at it. You're probably doing great as a mom and teacher. You can find the balance between routine and variety. The kids will probably come around, though if they're like me, they won't really get it until they're 19 or so. (Then it'll take another 10 or 20 years of practice to get good at stuff. But you won't be responsible for them then.) But they'll get used to doing what you need them to do because it's what you/they do. And it'll never fulfill your expectations, because they're kids, and you have how many? 5 people living in one home.

Remember to take breaks and get out of the house when you need to!
 

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So I don't believe in beating children...truly I don't. But it seems like those that do have children who care - or maybe I'm just seeing a grass is greener thing... but my siblings and i would NEVER act as my kids do...

We homeschool... and we tend to take long breaks around Christmas and its way more sneaky "school" than usual. It is now February, and I cannot get my kids back on track with ANYTHING.. . (school or home stuff)

They don't listen to me when I say its time to do ANYTHING... an example:

They really wanted to watch the ProBowl last night, but it was on too late... so we taped it. I put out the schedule for today... (we stick to a sort of routine but its always posted by the time they wake up). TOdays... get dressed, clean the house (we usually do that sat morning, but i went out), memory work, independent work, probowl.

I'm trying not to micromanage and let them get the idea... but not only did they not clean... they made MORE of a mess! I finally got the house clean enough, called them down for memory work and it was excuse after excuse... I need a drink, I have to pee - one of them just opened a book and started to read... I got mad because they coudln't concentrate for THIRTY minutes... and they did not care... just went on trying to play around me (they are not babies.. 6 3/4, 8 3/4, 10 3/4) And we've been doing memory work in some form or another for a lONG time!

I threw them outside. I just don't want to even be in the same house with them right now. They're playing and having a wonderful time.

When I was younger... if my mother had kicked me out of the house because she was that mad with me... I'd be miserable trying to figure out how to fix it and get back in her good graces... my kids? laughing and having a snowball fight...

How do I fix this??? How do I even start???

(They were super excited about the pro-bowl... I'm not going to let them watch it obviously, but I really doubt they'll actually care...)
I'm now a Great grandma who raised 3 as mostly a single mom. Two of the best books I read were 'Parent Effectiveness Training' or PET by Thomas Gordon (don't know if it's still in print) and 'How to Talk So Your Kids Will Listen and How to Listen So Your Kids Will Talk' - can't remember the authors name. I found this one when I was single parenting 2 teens and a 5 yr old! It worked like magic! I used the principles in PET with my children and they are all very good communicators as adult parents. A modern day similar concept is 'Non Violent Communication', by Marshall Rosenburg. Google NVC for lots of resources. The basic concepts of these books are that our children's feelings matter and we need to listen to them (while setting boundaries of course). For me usually a simple - I hear your don't want to do that right now, but I would like this to be done and I'd really appreciate your cooperation now so we can all watch the game in an hour.... This is a request rather than a demand and is heard much easier if put in request form with a reward attached. If they still won't cooperate, maybe a time out to think about it is in order? I would usually get a request from them later in the day - can I go to my friends house? My reply - sure, as soon as such & such is done. It works and does require flexibility. But who wants to fight with their kids all day, or get them to comply thru fear? I would also crank up the music and clean with them - from a long, long time ago article in Mothering Magazine! It turned it into a party and made banana splits when we were done!
 

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So I don't believe in beating children...truly I don't. But it seems like those that do have children who care - or maybe I'm just seeing a grass is greener thing... but my siblings and i would NEVER act as my kids do...

We homeschool... and we tend to take long breaks around Christmas and its way more sneaky "school" than usual. It is now February, and I cannot get my kids back on track with ANYTHING.. . (school or home stuff)

They don't listen to me when I say its time to do ANYTHING... an example:

They really wanted to watch the ProBowl last night, but it was on too late... so we taped it. I put out the schedule for today... (we stick to a sort of routine but its always posted by the time they wake up). TOdays... get dressed, clean the house (we usually do that sat morning, but i went out), memory work, independent work, probowl.

I'm trying not to micromanage and let them get the idea... but not only did they not clean... they made MORE of a mess! I finally got the house clean enough, called them down for memory work and it was excuse after excuse... I need a drink, I have to pee - one of them just opened a book and started to read... I got mad because they coudln't concentrate for THIRTY minutes... and they did not care... just went on trying to play around me (they are not babies.. 6 3/4, 8 3/4, 10 3/4) And we've been doing memory work in some form or another for a lONG time!

I threw them outside. I just don't want to even be in the same house with them right now. They're playing and having a wonderful time.

When I was younger... if my mother had kicked me out of the house because she was that mad with me... I'd be miserable trying to figure out how to fix it and get back in her good graces... my kids? laughing and having a snowball fight...

How do I fix this??? How do I even start???

(They were super excited about the pro-bowl... I'm not going to let them watch it obviously, but I really doubt they'll actually care...)
I think they don't fear you... which take heart, is not a bad thing as we are taught to believe. I too would have been extremely miserable if my mother was mad at me; so much that even as an adult it used to cause me stress if she would use one of her guilt tripping ways to her advantage! One day I just let go. I thought that when one truly loves another, they don't need to act a certain way to be/feel loved. I learned that in my 30's.. Your kids learned this lesson a lot younger. Good on them! They will better off in the long run.

Anyway, I think what you need to do is this:
-Don't be hard on them. Coming down on a child and lecturing when they are already not listening achieves nothing (from my own experience). Children need love when they are most unlovable and I know this first hand. They usually feel out of control (because let's face it, they have none when everything is parent led) and need to either cry or have a calm reassuring moment with their caregiver to get back on track.
-Forget the schooling for a few more days. Ask them what they want to do. We fell into a bad trap of too much parent led schooling and everyone was burning out, including myself (5+ hours of book work 5 days a week is simply too much). I took the schedule out and said you know what? To h*ll with monday and friday being a work day, they are now officially project days! We do more than enough scheduled non-negotiable work on tues/wed/thurs. "What do you want to learn? What do you want to do?" I asked them. Each one came up with a list and we're in the process of gathering everything we need and making space for this new adventure. Suddenly everyone seems calmer and I don't hear any groaning when we start school work on tues/wed/thurs. They feel relieved, heard and respected. I can't emphasize this enough. Children tend to give out respect only if:
-They fear the consequences of not giving out respect (which I believe is not a good thing if you delve beyond the surface)
OR
-They feel respected by the parent and want to give it back out of love, respect, admiration for the parent

Also wanted to mention natural consequences.. let the house get messy and intolerable.. they will quickly learn what happens when you continuously ignore house duties.
 

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How about going to a coffee shop or book store to have a study session ? I know when I was in college that was often a life saver , away from the same boring routine.
Routines are boring also, try to be a bit more flexible. Flex hours/work modules ?
 

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I've been feeling pretty frustrated that my son doesn't want to be as helpful as I'd like. I got a book that my husband read and I've been reading. My husband started putting the suggestions into practice. I could immediately see the difference in my husband's behavior and in how our kids responded. Now I'm also changing how I do things and it's making a HUGE difference.

The book's about letting your kids know you hear them and kindly helping them deal with life's disappointments and responsibilities so that they'll have the skills they need as adults. Although this is in line with my philosophy of parenting, along the way we lost our ideals. It's good to be reminded how to interact with our kids in a way that brings out the best in all of us.

By the way, when I was reading your post I got pretty overwhelmed by the emotions and the list of requirements and I'm older than 6 or 11 or even 27. I bet your kids were even more overwhelmed than I am.

Parenting Without Power Struggles: Raising Joyful, Resilient Kids While Staying Cool, Calm, and Connected by Susan Stiffelman.

http://smile.amazon.com/Parenting-Without-Power-Struggles-Resilient/dp/1451667663/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1454653690&sr=1-1&keywords=parenting+without+power+struggles
 

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Time to Regroup.

All kids do not learn the same. You have a great bunch of kids that are acting great as a group. Take advantage of this. Look for games to incorporate what you are teaching. Look for songs to incorporate memorization that they can sing together. There are so many different venues out there. I think the kids are telling you that the status quo is not holding their attention . . . time to change it up.
 
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