How to Keep Kids From Bring Bored Without Screens

During summer break, there are two words that parents dread hearing: “I’m bored.” And there’s a good reason for that, as kids say it an average of seven times a week, according to a new study. It’s easy to let them hop on their tablets or watch TV to keep them happy and not complaining, but too much screen time comes with its own problems.

The study finds that a quarter of the 1-thousand parents surveyed admit their kids don’t use their imagination as much as they did growing up and 17% think their kid’s attention span is too short for some games they played as kids. But before you throw in the towel and hand over the iPad as a cure for your child’s boredom, here are some expert-recommended screen-free ways to keep kids busy and entertained.

  • Create a boredom jar - Clinical psychologist Dr. Elizabeth Kilbey suggests creating a jar filled with pieces of paper that have activities written on them. When your kiddo says they’re bored, they get to pick a slip of paper at random and then do what it says.
  • Change the scenery - Get the kids outside, whether it’s to the park, for a walk around the block, or just out in the backyard. If it’s too hot or raining, Kilbey recommends trying an afternoon bubble bath or making a blanket fort.
  • Schedule playtime - Dedicating time specifically for playing with your kids is good for both of you. This child expert shares that when you play with your kids, it helps boost their social and emotional development, as well as their language, imagination and communication skills. Plus, the study finds that 44% of parents love playing games with their kids, so pick an activity you enjoy, too.
  • Encourage solo play - Try to get them to play alone sometimes because it’s good for their development and imagination.
  • Challenge them - Kilbey recommends giving kids a goal-oriented task to “give them a real sense of achievement.”
  • Have some fun - She reminds us that play doesn’t have to be about learning something, it’s summer break and they deserve some downtime to just do what they enjoy.

Source: NY Post

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