Helping A Bored Child.

If you are a parent, chances are you get the “I am bored” cry from your child. You want them to be happy and have provided them with toys, best kids tv subscriptions around and they have other electronic devices at their reach. So, why will they be bored you may ask with some mild frustration?

Why Do Children Get Bored?

I have often wondered why my kids complain of boredom, and I can hardly remember a time I was bored as a kid. The more I looked into it and try a few things with my kids, the more I begin to see where the problem lies. If you go back decades ago before the arrival of electronic devices we carry in our hands, kids played outside and explored the world around them. They played with other kids in the neighbourhood and developed social skills. 

Today, the world is different. It is no longer safe for parents to leave their kids to play with other kids in some neighbourhoods. The option we now provide is tv and other electronic devices as their number babysitter almost from birth. One of the disadvantages of dependency on screens is that our kids cannot create their entertainment. They depend on others to do it for them. These devices do not replace their need to play, explore, learn and make friends. Chances are, you are busy with housework and may not be paying them enough attention as well. A vacuum will be created that leads to the “I’m bored” syndrome.

What Can You Do When Your Child Is Bored?

Remember, it is not always a bad thing for kids to be bored. Even adults get bored sometimes with their work, but they still get on with it. So, teach your child how to cope with boredom, so when they meet more challenging situations in life, they can deal with them. Try the following:

  • Give them attention. Sometimes I’m bored means I need some attention. If you discern that, you may not need to do anything extraordinary but listen and give hugs. Then they get back to play or doing anything else.
  • Teach them to create their fun. Let them learn to dance, jump, do hide and seek, painting, engage in projects like building with old cardboard boxes or anything else that is safe to use around the house.
  • Teach them to be helpful to others like mom and dad. Assign chores that are age-appropriate to them. They will feel better with themselves when they help others. Even very young children can help!
  • Plan play dates for them to hang out with friends.
  • Let them take lessons to learn skills like playing the piano, guitar or other instruments.
  • Play a sport by registering in the local recreation centre.
  • Help them learn to work independently on projects like crafting and writing or solving math problems.
  • Plan and schedule their activities for them. Even older kids still complain of boredom when they are fun stuff they could do. However, when reminded, they go “Oh I forgot that’. So, you need to be on the driver’s seat doing the prompting and make them work independently of you. You then get some free time to do your own thing. A win-win for all!

Invest in craft, fun educational subscriptions. So kids can follow a structured step by step activities whether indoor, outdoor or both that can stimulate their interest in science, technology, arts, engineering and math.

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