As grandparents we knew what it was like to create our own fun.
Boredom was a feeling that was short lived, and the first step to long, extended playtimes.
However, children today are so overstimulated they no longer get the opportunity to become bored.
Is this a good thing?
No, according to the latest research reported by Teresa Belton from Greater Good in Action.
What’s stopping children from becoming bored?
The short answer to this is – us!
Parents, grandparents, teachers and guardians are filling children’s time with things to do.
And, it is much easier than it was in the past.
If the television is not on, then there’s smartphones and tablets to keep kids busy.
Parents ‘arrange’ playdates and overcommit their children to a high level of out-of-school activities.
There is not enough quiet time to become still and, dare I say it, bored!
What happens when a child becomes bored?
Quiet time is a great opportunity to relax and become reflective.
Children need this as much as we do, perhaps more.
Research is showing us that bored children have greater problem solving skills.
They are also more creative and have better social skills.
Planning your grandchild’s quiet time
To help your grandchild build their imagination create some quiet time.
You might like to take them outdoors to an area where you can both sit and watch what’s going on.
Point out things that are going on around you – perhaps it might be a bird or what other people are doing.
Ask questions that prompt well thought out answers rather than just ‘yes’ or ‘no’.
When we stop talking our brains eventually settle and start processing deeper thoughts.
Take note of what your grandchild does and says during these quiet times.
Will these boring times result in some new and interesting games or ideas?