On Humor and Bad Attitudes

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We all have them — those moments when bad attitudes rear their ugly heads during school time.  Last week I shared my top ten ways to handle a bad homeschool day, but after one day last week, I have another one to add to the list:  humor.

Now this one may be more for the bad homeschool “moment” rather than one of those really lousy days, but on this particular afternoon, Megan was pitching a royal fit about about doing her reading instruction.  I’m sure you know nothing about the royal fits that kids can pitch, so let me just tell you, it was ugly.  In the midst of all this, as I was beginning to lose my cool, Megan screamed, “I hate this book!  This book stinks!”

It just struck me as funny.  So, on impulse, I leaned down, pressed my nose to the book and sniffed really loudly before declaring, “It smells fine to me.”

There was a brief moment where Megan couldn’t decide if that was funny or if it just made her more angry than she was already.  Then, she gave it up and slipped off on the funny side.  We both got a good laugh out of it before she continued her reading lesson with a much improved attitude.

Have you ever had one of those moments where you just went completely the opposite direction from what your kid expected and wound up defusing a situation that could have been blown all out of proportion?  It’s kind of humbling when it happens and you realize that there were probably dozens of times when it unnecessarily went the other way.

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  1. OCCASIONALLY. Only once in a while can I cool my own jets to remember that their emotions are even wilder than mine. I have one child who reacts well to humor. The eldest though? Heh. Making a joke will only add fuel to his fire. Gotta remember that during math. Oy, math…

  2. My wife uses humor whenever I'm "being a grump." She's always trying to get me to smirk when I'm down. It's frustrating–to me, because I want to stay upset–but it does often work to get me out of my slump.


  3. I've been reading your blog for a several month now and I want to tell you how much I enjoy it. I've found the inspirateion I needed to pursue homeschooling and want to thank you for posting the ups and downs.


  4. I agree with the comment from Luke – my husband does this ALL the time when I'm upset about something. He'll do something random or say something completely silly and even though it irritates me, it always brings me around.
    Today has been a bad homeschooling day for us though so this (and the link to your other post) was much needed! Thanks! 🙂

  5. That is great. With my daughter you never know if she will laugh or get mad, but it's always worth a shot. Thank you for sharing.

  6. Thanks for the reminder- and the laugh. I needed it!! We had more than a few "moments" yesterday, so I am off to read the other post you linked. 🙂

  7. OH, yes, yes, yes! Every single time I manage to diffuse an ugly situation with humour or kindness it is a reminder that I should always respond in that way. My bad attitudes do not help anybody in my family to have better attitudes. Thank you for the reminder.


  8. It almost always works here. Sometimes the arguments are so ridiculous that it's impossible not to laugh. Once one starts, the others soon follow.

  9. I would have said the same thing. Those 'literal interpretation comebacks' come naturally to me.

    and in response to Luke's comment- humor is just one of many tools and not all tools are good for all ocassions. It's good to be reminded of that. And not all kids respond the same- we need to adjust our parenting to our kids differences.

  10. Just saying hi as I have arrived here on a little meander around some blogs! Love what I've read so far. Especially this humorous post. So true, I often catch the children off guard with a funny comment which they are unsure how to take at first. It really does lighten up the tense moment, doesn't it.
    Thanks for having me!

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