What to do with an uninspired Monday?

I wake up some Mondays and just don’t want to know. I’m sure everybody does at times.

When it gets too much, go where they day takes you.

When it gets too much, go where they day takes you.

I remember that happened when we were home educating too, even though it was overall the most inspiring and liberating experience. Finding that you can actually break through conventional barriers and do something different usually is. But there are times however magical life can be that you just can’t hack it!

If you’re home schooling, not to worry; I looked at it this way: You can bet your boots that there are many teachers also waking up with that same feeling, so if you’re going to be less than inspirational for the kids today then you won’t be the only one – you can be sure of that.

You can also rely on the fact that even though you may not be having much stimulating input some days the children will still be learning. Because they learn without your input too – that’s the nature of their inquisitive minds.

And another point is that as a parent, you don’t always have to take the stage, be the leader, be in charge, come up with infinite ideas, or be the jester who jollies everyone along. The children also have to learn to do that for themselves.

So it’s just as important that sometimes you ‘sit in the audience’ as it were. And let the kids take the main stage. Let them be in charge, come up with ideas and control the day. And you go with their flow for the day.

This gives them an important opportunity to make decisions, not to expect to always be entertained, to problem solve for themselves, to even look after those whose needs are bigger than theirs at times. Important life skills.

I had days when my needs were bigger than theirs. When I had to fold into the nucleus of my self for a bit and not be the sole inspirational leader of others’ lives, but just look after my own and get my strength back up.

And you know what?

Those days always worked out just fine. The kids found things to do. We watched stuff. We may have even stayed in PJs all day and were they ruined as a result? Did they turn into lazy, jobless, no-hopers unable to get up in a morning as someone nastily suggested they would?

Course not! They are hard working adults who know what it is to work, who are always punctual and responsible – and sociable – and sometimes more conscientious than colleagues, who contribute to the working world as does anyone.

So don’t worry about those Mondays, or any days, when you really cannot give out. You’re not ruining your kids just because of the odd day. In fact you are teaching them something of what it is to be human – and humane!

Something I often wonder, after reading Nicky Morgan’s latest proposals (see my last), if they’ll get in school!

11 thoughts on “What to do with an uninspired Monday?

  1. Pingback: Observation Week | The Adventures Of 5 plus 1!

  2. Ross great post πŸ™‚ ….Can i ask a question?…..My girls are very different in their abilities and passions. My older daughter is quite academic and the younger more practical and artsy. At the moment I am helping the older work through a IGCSE course. as well as trying hard to satisfy younger sisters interests. So feel a bit pulled this way and that trying to fulfil everyones wants and needs. Did you ever feel like this? and what advise would you give?

    • I definitely felt like that; like a tennis ball being batted between the two of them! And mine had chalk and cheese interests too. Then I noticed that it was as much to gain my attention as it was a real need for me to be involved! I think, like I say in this post, we are not their tennis ball and we have needs too! So it is a matter of discussing everyone’s needs – yours included – and how they are all going to be managed. Even young children respond well to discussions about the logistics of life, even though these may seem quite adult discussions, I think they rise to the respect of being included. Map out what you might need to do, explain that you’re going to spend 30 mins with each – or whatever, and allow it to be all right to request one works/plays on their own whilst attending to the other, and both do so whilst you attend to you! Kids would rarely get any individual time in a classroom so they still come off better! πŸ™‚ Hope this helps!

  3. This article landed at the top of my feed at just the right time! We have been umming and ahhing about whether to begin homeschooling our 9 year old daughter and 6 year old son for sometime now (for various reasons) and my main concern has been about days like this. Days when I’m uninspired, demotivated, lacking in energy or simply can’t be bothered to do a fat lot. This has reassured me that this is perfectly normal and not the end of the world in fact, if viewed in the right way, can be a positive. Thank you!

    • That’s so good to know Esther, thank you for taking the time to comment. So glad it reassured. I think being spoon-fed education without much chance to think for themselves or lead their own days is a major flaw in the system; the kids don’t learn the skills to take charge of their lives and make appropriate decisions – essential life in my view!

  4. Yep we have these days too. I like to make these days an ‘observation day’ just watch my guys and their choices and activities. It takes off any pressure and more often than not I get drawn in by them and we end up on some kind of project or discussion together. They always end up being the best days!!

  5. I have to wholeheartedly agree – in fact, I think that having days where you simply snuggle up on the sofa and watch stuff on the television can be unbelievably informative to a child whether they are being home educated or are in school. History documentaries are exceptional these days – they are both entertaining and informative. They can lead to some fabulous conversations with your child. Watching films together is another must – it is so easy to teach your child analytical and critical skills while doing this. Of course, you can’t beat cuddling up with a book that will feed all your souls. All of those things are great if you are exhausted and need a rest. However, if you need time to think, feel ill or are upset then you can give your child topics to research. Teaching your child independence is as important as all the other skills that you teach them. The main thing is not to beat yourself up about it – your child will be more than fine – I’ve been there so I know.

  6. Thank you for this. It’s exactly how I’m feeling on this grey and dreary Monday morning. I worry that on these days when my 4 home educated children just want to play or watch tv, that they won’t learn anything. Although deep down I know they are always learning.

    • So glad you liked it and left me a comment – thank you. As further reassurance; all the families we home educated with had days like those and all the children have turned into intelligent productive adults! πŸ™‚

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