to not look forward to my DD getting home from school(80 Posts)
My DD is 5 years old and I have a toddler too. I don't look forward to her coming home from school because I feel the pressure to spend quality time with her and play / find activities to do. Trying to occupy them both is a nightmare.
She is well behaved generally, gets home and does a bit of homework, then it feels so long until 6pm when my DH gets home. I feel like I don't know what to do with her and I feel so shattered at the thought of having to play. It feel like utter boredom having to make up games and activities - is this normal to feel this way??
Today I went to around to a friend's and saw all the stuff she does for her kids after school. She's like some wonder-woman who makes loads of crafts and activities - saves them on Pinterest, etc. The evidence of 'learning activity' is all around the house.
What do you do with your kids after school?
Urm we have a snack, talk about the day and watch TV. Like normal people
My kids mostly amused themselves after school.
Me and my siblings did the same when we were little. I don't think it really occurred to us to expect our mum to entertain us.
Great if we could fit a family board game in after dinner or even a game of I spy or something, but no big deal if we couldn't.
Do things you can all do. I have two toddlers and I’m constantly finding things to do.
Please dont feel obligated to create any home learning!
We will do 30 mins tv, while I make their tea(they eat at 4pm) then after tea they will usually grab a box of playmobil or kentic sand and sit and play with it for 30-45 mins. Then we do 30 mins bath. Into pjs and another 30 mins telly. She reads her reading book and then while she has a slice of toast I read something to her. Then its 7pm and bedtime.
My DSC are tired when they get home from school, they'll normally crash out watching tele.
If not, they do colouring/painting, help me/DH make tea, play outside on their bikes/scooters, walk the dog or we go to the park.
We've got a craft/colouring box so the DSC can just get the stuff out themselves and don't need DP or me to supervise.
Don’t compare yourself. My children had done lots in the day at school so I didn’t feel the need to do structured learning activities. I just chatted about their day, got them involved with making dinner and tidying up after (teaching life skills and getting extra help, win win) but of homework, bath and jammies and then telly, books, playing with their toys, chatting and relaxing till bed time. They are both doing extremely well at school now despite me not doing any ‘entertainment’ after school. Just do fun stuff with them at the weekends and stop watching what your friend is doing. Too much pressure on yourself won’t achieve anything.
Don't put pressure on yourself it'll only make you fed up!
My son is 5 but doesn't have homework yet, just reading to do. He'll have a snack, bit of tv, plays with toys etc then dinner, bath and bed. They've been at school all day they don't need to be schooled again as soon as they get home! Maybe I'm just a bit sloppy but I like to let him chill after school.
Don't compare yourself to other people.
At that age my dcs would generally slob out in front of the TV and after a while they would wander off and play. Very rarely did I 'entertain' them with organised activities other than setting out colouring or playdoh.
Why do you need to entertain her? Surely she's spent all day doing structured activities at school and just wants to chill out when she gets home. Do her reading/spellings with her but other than that show her the toybox/tv/ipad. You can still interact with her but you don't need to provide full on activities unless you really want to.
OP, why do you feel you need to provide constant entertainment for your children? They have to learn to entertain themselves, to make up stuff on their own initiative. Otherwise they will grow into adults with zero own motivation or ability to engage in independent creative and satisfying activity. I really do believe that all this constant parent-led crafty-messy play-cupcake baking is creating a generation of couch potatoes. Give yourself a break. Boredom is good for kids.
Lego - easy ‘playing’ that just involves sitting on the floor making things out of bricks. Minimal effort and DC like that you’re with them
Colouring in. This was my favourite as so piss easy. DP used to call me Ozzy Osbourne
We do arts and crafts, jigsaw puzzles, colouring, we play police men, do learning like numbers and alphabet. Lots can be done hun. Even movie time is good although LG doesn’t last the full length then plays with her dolls x
Urm we have a snack, talk about the day and watch TV. Like normal people
Surely she is tired and there isn't much more to do than snack, chat, listen to her read, let he watch TV or draw or something whilst you make dinner then eat? She doesn't need more stimulation, she'll be exhausted after school.
God stick the telly on give her a nice but healthy smack and relax 😁 talk a bit about her day and your day and let her find her own ways of unwinding x
My dcs will entertain themselves too.
When they were younger, I’d put stuff on the table for them to do by themselves. Things like play doh, sticker books, paper and pencils for drawing, paints, those hama beads or other crafts.
Sometimes I’d do some easy baking.
They’d play with toys.
Then have dinner. Then watch a bit of tv, get them ready for bed and read some books.
When mine get home we put bags and coats away. We hang about in the kitchen and have a drink and snack. Then they disappear upstairs to watch TV play lego or whatever else.
I think they need some time to do their own thing.
Don't put more pressure on yourself than you need to.DC love to come home to loaf around, tell you stuff that happened at school and badger you about when dinner will be. Don't let quality time suck the fun out of everyday comforts!
I really think there's something in what a previous poster said about parent-led activities making children lazy and unimaginative. I find this sometimes with my children. My own childhood, whilst very happy, was very different and I hardly remember playing with my parents at all until I was a good bit older. I do remember playing with lego by myself a lot and being happy to get engrossed in it - my children are rarely fully engrossed in anything and it worries me.
I spend a lot of time with my children but I bloody hate role play and dolly play. Puzzles, lego, art, play-doh all fine with me but please don't ask me to "make the princesses talk"!!!!!
A walk home via the park, a snack with you, then curling up under a blanket with a cat, dog or cuddly toy in front of C-Beebies while you make tea is surely all that any child wants after a day at school.
If they get on OK stick them in the bath together after their tea with soft music playing, then sit on the loo seat with a cup of tea and supervise the splashing. By then should be almost time for your DH to be home.
Surely there is some balance? If she finishes at 3 and your husband comes home at 6 that's 3 hours at home tops. It's a bit sad that you are dreading spending 3 hours a day with your 5-year-old child. You don't have to entertain them but chatting, playing, reading or suggesting or directing activities if you are busy is not that awful / boring.
I have a friend who used to prepare delicious home-made snacks and do craft activities after school, the children always wanted to hang out at mine where we did nothing really, chat, watch TV, certainly no structured activities by parents. As they get older, homework fills this gap, and they fill it themselves by pottering in their room, texting friends, one of mine was very creative and would do little projects, but never structured by me. I used to concentrate on cooking tea, tidying, baths, and so on. I think you are feeling pressured into doing something that isn't necessary (also if you do clubs like swimming, that can take up an afternoon or two).
Fuck that, they’ve been learning all day! I wouldn’t want to encourage them to ‘bring work home’ (beyond homework) at the age of 5! My 6yo comes in, eats whatever he can find then watches TV or plays. 2 days a week he has an activity/club after school and on those days he can have his tablet instead.
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