Summer is fast approaching, and so are the days when kids will have loads of free time that overwhelms them. Instead of finding creative ways to fill what we as adults would find luxurious open-ended hours, the kids decide to boldly declare that they're bored, so a parent will assume the responsibility of filling these voids for them.
That would be doing their wonderfully imaginative minds a grave disservice if we took on this challenge on their behalf. It's vital for their development not only creatively but also as original thinkers, for self-esteem, and for learning independence.
Learn about the importance of boredom at https://www.fatherly.com/parenting/the-importance-of-boredom-and-letting-your-kids-be-bored/.
Also, boredom is, well, boring. It's not fun. So, this teaches kids that life is not all roses and sunshine. There will be frustrations, but that means establishing a tolerance for less than perfect situations with a handle on emotions when things don't go the way you want them to.
Further, a child can learn how to solve this problem in an organized, strategic way for their greater good.
What that means for a parent is that there needs to be a proactive response instead of a reaction. Rather than drop everything to provide entertainment, it's better to set aside some time to “collaborate” with a child on a collection of activities, projects, and challenges.
These mean to take them through the summer blending ideas from each of you, including enjoyable past activities, current things they would like to explore, and existing materials within the household that can be incorporated.
With the suggested ideas, make a chart showing each one so the child can reference this instead of reaching out to you when they need something to do, and perhaps create a daily schedule with set time spent on each project.
Once the work is finished, the kids will feel excited and fulfilled at the work they accomplished and hopefully ready for their summer “plans.”
What To Do When Kids Are Bored
When there are bored kids in the house, it might be easy for mom or dad to drop everything and entertain them, but it's not the most convenient, especially if parents are working from home.
It's also not beneficial for the child developmentally to have their problems solved for them so readily and quickly without any thought process used on their own.
The ideal scenario is to create an activity chart full of projects, challenges, and things to do for the children; not only that will take them through a long summer season, but whenever there might be a few free hours, like a snow day perhaps.
The projects will need to be age-appropriate, and the chart will need to be as well, including pictures for little ones in place of text. A few activities that each age group will enjoy that mom or dad might have to help out with for just a little bit include:
This one is for all ages. Collect cheerful pictures from magazines of suns, balloons, smiley faces, anything happy and make collages on colorful construction paper and then put these inappropriate size frames. The big kids might have to help the little kids with this step.
When all is finished, put the framed collages in gift bags that your parents might have collected with tissue paper, and then ask mom or dad to visit the kids' wing in the hospital to cheer up some new friends.
Blogging for your ages
A small child can help select pictures for the older kids on this project. First, it's good fun and helps develop skills to establish a website. Some sites make it relatively easy.
From there, kids can create a personal blog. If it catches on with lots of visitors, comments, and interactions, mom or dad can help develop it into a monetized site so the child can actually earn while creating.
This will require mom or dad to clean the attic, but it's well worth the effort. The kids, as a collective, will receive a box of treasures with which they will need to find a way to either develop a story centering around each item in the box, create a new life for each item as something unique, or use a little bit from each piece to make something useful.
In order to make the project a bit more of a challenge, the kids will need to act out the story for their parents and demonstrate how the items work once they have a new life. Click here for ways to help your kid embrace boredom.
While mom and dad might find it easier to drop everything and provide entertainment, it isn't convenient for the workday, nor is it suitable for the kids' development.
Children have the potential to be problem solvers, original thinkers, and productive. It just takes introducing them to their imagination.