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kindergarten teacher, sun lover, scorpio-introvert, dog mom, obsessed with low-tox living. Hoping to help you parent your littles, make some clean swaps, & simply live your best life.

MEET
mackenzie

5/25/2022

End of the school year parenting survival

Getting through those tantrums and meltdowns

It’s the final week(s) of school and your preschooler or kindergartener is melting down on a MUCH more regular basis than usual. There are more (dumb) arguments, more talking back, more tears, less compliance and your patience is running very thin. Sound familiar? I feel like I say this very frequently… but I’ll say it again: you’re not alone. Below is one strategy to help you and your family make it to summer. (PSA if you haven’t joined my email community, hop on there now – summer activities coming your way)

Level with your kids and include them in the decision making.

I remember so many times at the end of the school year telling my students “(usually it started off with a big exhale after waiting for them to get quiet for 10 minutes) Alright… we have a short time left together. I really want to enjoy these last several days with you kids. I adore you and want the best for you! These are the things we must complete. I can tell your attention is short right now. How do you suggest we tackle this?” 

First: why does this work?

It clears the friction. By saying the facts about where you are and what needs to get done you are helping kids refocus and make it more approachable. Then, when you say what you notice about how they’re feeling, it acknowledges their feelings which often helps absolve them of having to stick with those yucky feelings. All of this also helps remove sides – it’s not you against your child. It’s you and your child against the frustration of the moment. Finally, empowering them to come up with a solution helps them re-engage by getting them thinking actively about a solution. It also helps them move along to the solution because they get to come up with it. Major buy in. (if your little often gets decision making fatigue, stay tuned for a post for you).

Second: what’s the formula?  

  • State current circumstances
    • We are behind schedule and struggling to get out the door.
  • Express warm, loving feelings (muster them up, believe me, it feels better for you this way too!)
    • I love you.
  • State observation of child’s resistance
    • I can tell you are having big feelings right now. 
  • State end goal
    • We are going to a playdate with x, y, z
  • Include them. Don’t be afraid to show your current deflation and don’t be afraid to get silly. A laugh can clear all the charge and friction. Be open to various routes to achieve your goal, because littles often have creative ways of completing things. 
    • How would you like to get there? (Walk, hop, you go first, I go first, bring X stuffy, etc.)

Did you find this helpful? Make sure you’re following me on Instagram and send me a DM with your next blog request!

Xo,

Mackenzie

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