Bored Jar

Crew spent a portion of Saturday telling me how bored he was.  Chad was out of town and I was trying to get Locke down for a nap. Elle and Croft were playing school which is the last thing a little boy wants to do on a Saturday.  At one point I heard Elle suggest that Crew read and he screamed back, “Reading is the stupidest invention in the world.”

I got a little glimpse into the long summer days ahead.

So Sunday we made a Bored Jar.   The basic idea is that if the kids get bored in the summer they can come to the Bored  Jar and pull out an activity to do.

First, I had the kids brainstorm different activities.  The only requirement was that the activity could not involve mom.  They would have to be able to do it on their own.  They typed up their ideas as different people gave suggestions.

If ideas got slow, I prompted them to think of outdoor, educational, imaginary and service activities.  I was pretty impressed with their ideas and their excitement.  Click here if you want to see our list.

I threw in “Do a chore for mom” a few times so they know that is a possibility.

Elle cut the activities into strips, folded them in fourths and put them in a mason jar.  We recommend a wide mouth jar so little hands can get in and out comfortably.  Then I made a tag to label the jar.

We will put the jar in a prominent place in the main area this summer so everyone can have access to it.

Let’s hope this works!


2 thoughts on “Bored Jar”

  1. We’ve done bored lists before. The problem is that they never want to do anything that is on the list. So what do you do if your child is bored and doesn’t want to do anything in the bored jar????

    1. Shelley, I anticipate that happening. The Bored Jar isn’t perfect; nothing is. It is just another tool to have in the tool belt. The first thing I would ask is did the kids help generate the list? Was it their ideas? Then I would ask were ground rules established initially when the list/jar was made? At the family meeting, we established that there would be no complaining when they pulled out the slip. They actually suggested that they would have to do what ever was on the slip. The only exception was Crew could draw again if he pulled out Barbies. Now this doesn’t mean they will follow the guidelines perfectly but because we talked about them before hand and they agreed to them, I can hold them accountable. I may either give them a chore or send them to their room if they complain. Or I just might let them be bored. And say back, “I’m sorry you are bored. What are you going to do about it?” Remember, it is not your job to entertain them or solve their problems; it is your job to provide tools, supplies, opportunities, ideas, etc. and that is what I think the Bored Jar does. Good luck!

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