5 Things to do when your Kids say they’re Bored

What to do when kids say they're bored

“I’m bored. There’s nothing to do.”

Don’t you just hate those words?

They mean you have to come up with something for your kids to do – and you’re already busy and frazzled!

What causes boredom?

Generally, boredom is considered to be caused by not enough activity.

We’ve heard the saying, “An idle mind is the devil’s workshop”, and that’s true. We should be keeping our kids occupied with useful things.

But,

It’s not good for your kids to be so busy that they never have opportunity to feel bored.

Most kids today are over-scheduled and over-stimulated. They could do with a bit of free time to get bored.

On the other hand, boredom may also be a reaction to too much stimulation such as TV, too many visitors and outings, or too much excitement.

This may temporarily dull your kids’ creativity or cause them to become dissatisfied with simple pleasures.

And then comes the inevitable, “I’m bored”.  (And your heart sinks…)

What to do when your kids are bored:

1. Evaluate your life.

Is it too quiet with not enough activity? Is there too much excitement? Make adjustments and get your lives balanced.

2. Calm things down.

If your kids have had too much excitement then a few days or more of quiet routine will help them calm down and get in touch with their creativity again.

3. Create a boredom jar.

Write different activities, crafts, games or chores on pieces of paper and pop them in a jar. Allow your child to choose 3 papers from the jar and then let them choose an activity from those 3.

Here are some ideas:

  • Build a blanket fort.
  • Create an obstacle course – indoors or outdoors
  • Write a letter or make a card for someone
  • Make sock puppets with socks that have lost their mate
  • Dress up – have a dress up bin full of old shoes, bags, clothes, hats etc.
  • Go for a bike ride
  • Play hide-and-seek
  • Tidy your room
  • Sort the sock drawer or “treasure” drawer
  • Draw outside with coloured chalk – it washes off with the next rain
  • Plan and make your own lunch
  • Set up an indoor/outdoor treasure hunt
  • Wash the dog
  • Clean 2 windows
  • Plant vegetable seeds in seed trays or a pot
  • Write a story
  • Do 20 jumping jacks and time yourself

4. Let them find their own solution.

Sometimes leave your kids to find something to do themselves. If you always solve their boredom problem your kids will not learn to create their own fun. If you allow them to come up with their own ideas it gives them opportunity to look inside themselves and think about their own interests and things they enjoy.

5. Spend some time with your kids.

When a child says they’re bored, they may be looking for parental engagement. They may just need a few minutes of attention. Give a cuddle. Read a short story. Look them in the eye and have a quick chat.  

Is boredom always bad?

Most definitely not!

Next time your kids say they’re bored, don’t freak out! You’re armed with ideas now.

What do you do when your kids say they’re bored?

About The Author

Jennifer Lovemore

Jennifer has diplomas in relationship counselling and CBT (Cognitive Behavioural Therapy), is a certified SYMBIS facilitator, and is certified in TPM (Transformation Prayer Minsitry). She lives in South Africa, has three grown children, and is married to her best friend – Richard.

2 COMMENTS

  1. Tamarynn | 9th Dec 20

    This couldn’t have come at a better time. Thanks so much for this post.

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