Kids Boredom Buster

Kids Boredom Buster

‘I’m bored.’ ‘I don’t know what to do.’   Sound familiar?

Inevitable words out of the mouths of our kids during the school break.

It’s great to organise trips, days out and social get togethers but don’t feel you have schedule their every move. Children need the time and space to transition from busy school routines to laid back livin’. It’s ok to feel a bit bored sometimes, they just have to find their own way out of it. (And that doesn’t have to mean endless hours glued to an iPad.) 

A few summers ago I pre-empted the cries of boredom by getting my kids to create a Not Bored Board. It worked a treat and has become an annual tradition.

Here’s how:

  • Grab a notebook. Get your child brainstorming their ideas for things to do at home that doesn’t involve electronic devices.
  • Divide it into sections:  Things to do alone  – read, puzzles, art, lego, play solitaire, listen to music, build a fort, take photos or videos, work on their Vision Board. Things to do with siblings - board/card games, make believe / dressing up, trains, cars, dolls, outdoor games and sports, singing, dancing, talent show, hide & seek. Things to do with you - games, sewing, arts and crafts, cooking/baking.
  • Next, give them a big piece of poster board to turn their brainstorm session into an art project. They can write, draw, clip photos from magazines or print from the internet.
  • Proudly hang the Not Bored Board and refer to it whenever they’re stuck for what to do.

*After I hit publish on this post I saw that the fabulous Dr. Laura Markham of Aha! Parenting has also posted a blog about boredom busters today! Check out her great list in case your kids need a few more ideas.

Top tip: The most effective time to do this is before school breaks up, when they’re still dreaming about how great all of that free time will be!

A bored child really struggles to think of anything to do and your suggestions never seem to appeal. Get them to create their board before they’re bored and the ideas come fast and furious.

While they’re off occupying themselves, use the time to get your own things done and to have a little me time. (Read How to Create Your Best Summer Yet to make this happen!) You’ll have more energy and patience when you get small breaks from the kiddie action. Fact. 

Reward your children for periods of entertaining themselves by having quality time with you afterwards. No checking emails, Facebook or prepping dinner. They’ll soon learn that by occupying themselves for a while each day, they’ll have your undivided attention later. Good for them - and you.

Happy Summer!

pssst….. Are you receiving the Project Me Monday Motivator? Each week I send a fresh reminder to put the focus on you. Pop your details into the box and I’ll also send you the free Life Wheel Tool for helping you create your own Project ME.

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In the comments below, share your thoughts on kids and boredom. Do you tend to schedule in a lot of fun or leave them to figure it out? Are they hooked on electronic games? Do you think they’d go for making a Not Bored Board? What ideas can you add? 

Please share on Pinterest, Facebook and Twitter!

 

Kelly Pietrangeli

I created Project Me to help mothers find a happier balance between the kids and everything else.

With practical tools to overcome overwhelm and get on top of your endless to-do’s, soon life will feel less crazy and you'll be the patient, happy mama you crave to be.

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15 Responses to Kids Boredom Buster

  1. Pam says:

    Kelly, I love the name of the board and the way you divided it into sections. I was just talking with a friend about how lots of parents are constantly on the go with their kids and don’t give them opportunities to entertain themselves or just “be.” I love this idea…I’ll be sharing it on FB!

  2. Clare Greig says:

    This is brilliant. I need this for my 5 year old who starts school next year. He gets bored at home so this is perfect x.

  3. What a great idea, my children love creating lists so i’ll get them onto this to fill those ‘bored’ moments. Thanks for sharing.

  4. Aparna says:

    Kelly, love the idea. I’m definitely going to get my girls to do this one….thank you so so much!

  5. Aparna – tell your girls they can send me a photo of their Not Bored Board and I’ll post it on Facebook :)

  6. Stacey says:

    What a wonderful idea! I have tried different types of lists over the summer, but I like this one because the kids create it!

  7. Sally says:

    Wonderful idea. I love it! My daughter is a little younger – she’s 3. But I’m thinking I can adapt the idea by clipping art or drawing pictures (instead of writing a list).

    • Definitely Sally! Younger ones love cutting out pictures and drawing and it’ll give her a great visual array of fun things to choose from. I’d love to see a photo of her Not Bored Board!

  8. This is such a great idea. The girls and I started a family vision board last year as a New Year’s Eve project-and we just included the things we know are important in my husbands life. I love seeing it every time I head to our basement hanging right there on the wall, such a great reminder of what we’re up to!

    • Glad you like the idea Nichi! And our Family Vision board hangs in our basement hallway (it’s actually a loooooong table cloth!) and every time I walk past it I get such a big smile on my face :) Thanks for your lovely comment. x

  9. […] weapon for keeping the kids happily occupied so I can have a bit of time to myself each day? Click here for my Boredom Buster! (No, it doesn’t involve handing them an iPad or parking them in front of the […]

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