When kids are out of school for long periods of time and their schedules get lighter, you’ll probably start hearing the all-too-familiar complaint, “I’m boooored!” While you can’t be expected to entertain kids 24/7, you can mix things up and have some fun with these (screen-free) boredom cures.
Do you have a budding performer living under your roof? You’ll never know unless you give them their shot to try it out. Kids can choose any kind of show they want to. The best part is that preparing for the show will occupy them long before it’s showtime.
Blanket and pillow forts have been entertaining kids since the dawn of time (we’re assuming). And it’s fun that will last throughout the day. Reading a book will suddenly seem like the best idea when they do it in the fort.
Boredom doesn’t stand a chance against gold old-fashioned arts and crafts time. You just have to make sure you pick projects that don’t take too long. Even bored kids that claim they’re desperate for diversions will lose interest in long projects. Try some of the following arts and crafts favorites:
Create a playlist of family favorites and boogie down in the living room or kitchen. When it’s nice out, grass makes a fine dance floor for kids. If you’re doing schoolwork at home, dance breaks are a good way for kids to get the wiggles out.
A puzzle can be a great boredom buster. Clear off a table and let kids get to work.
Including kids in preparing meals is an excellent boredom cure. And it might just have a positive effect on their eating habits as well. Try having theme nights like “taco Tuesdays” or eat foods inspired by a different culture each week.
Spread out a blanket in the park, yard, or living room floor and have a lovely picnic lunch. Curing boredom is all about mixing things up, so even something this simple can do the trick.
Try some easy science experiments for kids using household items. You’d be surprised by the projects you can do with the things in your closets and refrigerator!
Collect a bunch of random things from around the house and hide them in different rooms or outside. Then come up with clues for kids to follow to find each item. You can end it with a “prize” like a favorite snack.
Gardening is a great boredom cure for kids because it gets them outside and actually encourages them to get dirty. If you don’t have a lot of space (or time) to create a full garden, plant a mini one with whatever flowers and plants are in season.
Tried and true for centuries, board games are excellent boredom cure. Your kids probably already have favorite games, but try and expand their horizons by teaching them something new.
Raid the dress-up box or the closets to create fabulous outfits. Then have a fashion photoshoot where kids take turns being the model and the photographer.
Many children find learning about family members really fun. Start with stories from your childhood that include your own parents, siblings, and grandparents and work your way back in time. If you’re so inclined you can pull out photo albums or home videos.
Learning magic tricks is another great boredom cure. Not only will they be entertained learning it, but many easy magic tricks also have DIY elements kids need to construct. Once they master the tricks, maybe put them in the family show and let them blow your mind.
There are many books and websites like NASA’s SpacePlace where you can learn about the moon, constellations, planets, and stars. Then you can head outside at night and observe the cosmos in real life.
Take turns cracking each other up with funny rhymes and verses. You can get creative with different types of poems like haikus and couplets to work in some language arts education if you want.
Speaking of silly sayings, give everyone a case of the giggles by doing mad libs. If you don’t have an old school book available, check online or create your own.
Take turns setting up obstacle courses in the yard (or in the house if you’re brave). Compete for who can complete the course the fastest AND for who came up with the best one.
It’s an oldie but a goodie. Set up a tent if you have one and spend the night in the back yard. If you don’t have a tent or sleeping bags, spread out a blanket for the night and head inside for bed.
It might be hard to convince them – or yourself – that it’s good to be bored, but it is. There are many benefits to boredom. It boosts creativity, improves motivation, and gives them a bit of preparation for the rest of life. So shut off the screens and let them entertain themselves some other way.
At Kernodle Pediatrics, we are dedicated to providing our patients with comprehensive care that includes all aspects of health. If you have questions about your child’s health physical, mental, emotional, or social health, call us at (336) 538-2416 to make an appointment.