Why Are My Kids CRAZY After School and What Should I Do About It?

Updated on August 25, 2010
J.P. asks from Ventura, CA
12 answers

We just went back to school and for the first time, when my kids come home, they are BOUNCING OFF THE WALLS!! I've considered asking the school if they keep the kids on an IV of sugar all day or what?!?! Okay, I get that they have been sitting and paying attention all day, but, really, I feel like tying them to the vacuum so that as they run around they could at least TRY to counteract all the mess they have been leaving in their wakes. It's too hot (98-103 degrees) to send them outside and we live in a small apartment. What should I do??

1 mom found this helpful

What can I do next?

  • Add your own comment
  • Ask your own question
  • Join the Mamapedia community
  • as inappropriate
  • this with your friends

Featured Answers


answers from Dover on

First give them the down time they need when they come home...run around outside (weather permitting), play, whatever for a set amount of time and then a small snack before homework starts. It helps.

Edit My Answer
4 moms found this helpful

More Answers



answers from Los Angeles on

Totally normal. I'm a teacher, and anytime I see my students after school with their parents I'm like, "that is not the same child that was just in my classroom". And if it's that hot they probably didn't get much exercise at school either. Don't try anything structured b/c it won't work, but they need to get the energy out. Take them to a pool or maybe there's an indoor play area somewhere- a children's gym, YMCA, basketball gym, etc.

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Seattle on

They use up all their self control while they're in school.

When we didn't have a pool, were stuck in a small space, and were driving my mum crazy, she'd soak our heads and send us out to play with wet hair. When our hair dried it was time to come back inside and settle down. Often after a quick shower to cool off again (no air con).

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Pittsburgh on

Give them a little time before dinner & homework to burn off some steam! Take them to a park with a sprinkler!

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Honolulu on

They are Deflating... from their LONG day at school and listening and following directions all day and concentrating ALL day and sitting in their seats ALL day.
Just like an adult, that is at work ALL day, and comes home and needs to unwind or deflate too.

I learned that, once my daughter started school.

So, because I know that about her/kids.... I let her deflate and unwind. I also give her a snack because she is HUNGRY afterschool. They have to get out all their pent-up energy.... and deflate.

I tell my daughter once we come home... "okay, you can deflate. Unwind. Mommy will not make you do anything yet. But after, it is homework time." And then she does.

AND also though, OVER-tired kids.... also 'appear' more hyper... but they are actually very tired.
After school, kids are very tired... once they come home. Its a LONG day for them, at school.
My daughter, would also nap after school... which really made a difference.

all the best,

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Boise on

Nerve cells fire when there is calcium in the nerve cell- Magnesium acts as a channel gate blocker to keep calcium out of the cell and keep the nerves relaxed. Magnesium depletion causes high adrenaline .

Magnesium malate or Magnesium citrate daily...between 300-500 mg a day may help do the trick. If they start to get a loose stool(which is a natural response for magnesium) just cut back the dose until they are comfortable.

Ingesting high amounts of dairy (which is 8 tmes the calcium to magnesium ratio) exacerbates hyper behavior.

The other thought is low Cortisol. Cortisol is a natural hormone that helps us deal with stress, but stressful situations will deplete it. Low cortisol allows low blood sugar to occur- and then that causes an adrenaline surge. You can counter balance low blood sugar by having them eat a small protien snack every 2.5 -3 hours. If they eat lunch at 11:30 and arent getting food again until 4..it could be the reason. Maybe a cheese stick in the backpack for the way home might do the trick.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Phoenix on

While it's still so hot, why not take them to the pool? That should give them the physical outlet they need and wear them out for bed. Good luck!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Chicago on

I have found that it takes a minimum of 2 weeks for my kids to settle down at the end of the day of a new school year. In first grade, my daughter was an emotional mess after getting off the bus. She had a short fuse and was highly irritable. It was horrible. It took awhile for her to get accustommed to the full day routine.

Give it some time. Allow them to just unwind after school before rushing into some scheduled time/activity.

Our after school routine is unpack the backpack, hang up the backpack (they like to slid on this one!), wash hands and snacks. I don't enforce doing homework immediately. I let them burn off some energy or just "chill" before I crack down on night time homework.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Denver on

Are you open to some alternative ideas? I have found that some children are very influenced by their environment, which could be it. Do they like their teacher? Do you? What about their friends? Do they react to chemicals? A lot of cleaning agents used in schools are tied to hyperactivity--as well as artificial colors, artificial flavors, and chemical preservatives. Are they eating more pre-packaged foods when they are at school? There are lots of things that could be causing it--happy to talk to you further if any of this is resonating with you.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Las Vegas on

Sometimes a little movement break after a long day at school is needed. I understand that it still too hot outside for them to play but how about investing in a kids yoga video and doing it with them (they'll be more interested if you participate) or perhaps purschase a small collapsible mini trampoline for them to take turns bouncing on for 5 minutes each before they have to settle down to do homework. I've also found that, for my kids at least, its best not to give them any kind of sugary snacks after they get home because it turns them into maniacs.

Hopes you are able to find the solution that works best for you and your kids.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Chicago on

Sign them up for swim lessons or some other sports, and let them RUN after school. They need an outlet after being expected to sit still and behave at school. Or let them do something else like Wii where they can jump around and play a game, jump on a trampoline, ride bikes, etc.

I totally get where you're coming from. Pretty soon we'll all be complaining that it's too cold to do anything or go anywhere and we're stuck inside (again) with kids bouncing off the walls. LOL

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Boston on

Because unlike all the down time we used to have at school they don't get. Recess is maybe 5 minutes long sometimes 10 if they are lucky and its only once sometimes twice a day. I know when I was in elem school 20 years ago we played outside before school started, once in the morning, again at lunch, and one last time in the afternoon and we also had gym more then once a week. Join a local YMCA and take them after school so they can burn some energy or something similar. Another thing is I don't care how hot (unless its muggy) or how cold it is once they hop off that bus they go right to the backyard to play and run around for at least 15 minutes if its comfortable out they stay out a lot longer.