Getting Creative with Boredom!
Kids are naturals when it comes to being creative. October, with its changing of seasons and excitement of Halloween, brings wonderful opportunities to explore creativity with your family.
Children are born with open, curious minds, and naturally explore their world with great imagination and real expression. Between imaginary friends and LEGO inventions, it’s hard to believe that the deep well of a child’s imagination and creativity could ever run dry.
But sometimes parents — and kids — find themselves scraping the bottom of the imagination well, feeling tired and uninspired. Inevitably, that’s when children dramatically proclaim, “I’m BORED!” and look to their parent to find an entertainment solution. Yet, it is in these moments of boredom and stillness that creativity comes to life – when we invite it in!
We can help kids foster their creativity by igniting our own. Each of us is naturally creative; yet the older we get, the more narrowly we define “creativity.” We box it neatly into categories such as “musically gifted” or “artistically inclined,” which leaves many people feeling they are simply not creative at all.
Creativity is more than the arts. Notice the many areas in your life where you express yourself creatively: experimenting with a new recipe in the kitchen, growing a vegetable garden, decorating your home for the holidays, playing games, singing along with the radio, and even engaging in physical activity all are opportunities for creative expression. The more you share these experiences with your child, the more creativity will blossom for all of you.
Here are a few ideas to get that family creative energy going and banish the boredom:
- Find a fun recipe to make together. Whether it’s your grandma’s favorite cookie recipe, or you find something new online, get your kids involved in the kitchen!
- Find simple DIY instructions for Halloween decorations online to make with your kids! Check CHI’s Pinterest page for a few easy projects.
- Teach your kids how to play charades — fill a bowl with movie, TV, and song titles, simple phrases they would recognize, common characters from books and TV, and take turns acting them out for each other to guess!
- Provide some simple household objects for your child to create an obstacle course. You could use plastic plates, Frisbees, balls, sidewalk chalk, or blue painter’s tape for your child to make a creative course outdoors or inside.
- Have a silly “song” conversation — see how long you can sing what you want to say instead of talking to each other!
- Keep simple craft supplies on hand such as paper, markers and crayons, watercolors and a couple of brushes, and glue sticks, so that it is easy to make art if your child gets a “craving!”
- Collect cardboard tubes from paper towel and toilet paper rolls. See what your child can construct out of them! This is also a great way to teach them to reuse and recycle.
The next time your child comes to you and says, “I’m bored!” We hope your answer will be, “I can’t wait to see the fun you are going to create!” (and maybe even offer to join in).