Thoughtful Parenting: Tips for combating ‘I’m bored’
School is out, and the kids are excited to have free time to play and have fun. However, very quickly you may begin to hear your child say, “I’m bored.” There are many ways that parents can help their child to combat this boredom and have an educational experience, too. Here are a few tips for entertaining your child this summer.
• Learn a magic trick together. Your child will benefit from the focus, concentration and persistence needed to perform their trick for others.
• Create a treasure hunt for others. Your child could practice map skills or clue writing skills. Either way, they will be engaged in a creative process and will enjoy watching others try to find their treasure.
• Create an obstacle course. Along with the creative process, children will benefit from the physical exercise. They can also practice their math skills by timing themselves and trying to see if they can beat their previous records.
• Create an ice cream flavor. Have your child write a recipe for a new ice cream flavor. Buy the ingredients and have them try out their creation. There is no need to make homemade ice cream. Just have your child start with a store bought base flavor like vanilla or chocolate as their starting point. Your child will be practicing measurement skills in a fun way.
• Sketch a scene together. Compare your drawings and discuss how they are alike or different. Children will benefit from the fine motor skill development and the discussion that you have about the drawings.
• Create a Bored Box. Have your child decorate an empty box. Brainstorm with them ideas for fun and educational things that they would like to do. Write the ideas on slips of paper and put them in the box for future days. When you hear your child tell you they are bored, have them pull a random slip from the Bored Box and have them complete the activity.
Keep in mind that your child may be telling you that they are bored because they want to spend time with you. Make time for your child when possible and have a little fun. They may be looking to make an emotional connection with you, and boredom is their excuse. Enjoy your time with your child and have a great summer break.
Jenny Krentz is the assistant principal at Strawberry Park Elementary School.
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