Mumspeak #3: Parents' top tips for keeping boredom at bay during the holidays
Hello! It's the third edition of #Mumspeak, and since we're in the heat of the school holidays, this month's question is as good as it gets – What is your top tip for keeping boredom at bay during the holidays? From some old skool fun to just being spontaneous to actually learning with the idiot box/ i-pad (I love this one!), mums – and a SAHD – share their secrets…
This is what NO PARENT wants…
So get tips from mums and dads themselves…
The summer holidays seem endless, and sometimes you need to resort to pulling out the tablet or smartphone, and hoping that shoving it under their noses gets you to the head of the checkout queue / through lunch / back home without a tantrum or a dirty protest. I was beyond sick of the jaunty Peppa Pig theme tune, and even getting them hooked on *insert any CBEEBIES show here* would be replacing one earworm with another.
A friend shared an awesome link, called thekidshouldseethis.com. On it, you can search by genre, so if your kid is into animals, you can learn how baby flamingos become pink, or watch a whale and a shark feast on a school of sardines. If they like space, show them a view of the moon shot by NASA’s wide angle camera. My personal favourite shows all the animals that meander past the same tree in a year – check it out.
Rather than plonking them in front of a screen, this is educational, but in a really fun way. It’s the incorporation of screen time into a dialog that can take you to space and back, and give you and your kids something to talk about and discover together. Not bad on a rainy August Tuesday when you’ve blown the summer holiday fun budget three weeks too soon.
I dread the holidays due to boredom. My best tips to conquer it are to not plan too much. It goes against logical thinking but I find if I plan two days out a week, ideally cheap ones such as a national trust visit with a picnic, then it leaves the rest of the week to be spontaneous. Our best days are the simple days, trips to the park, a walk in the woods or getting the eggs and flour out and baking a cake. The days I spend time planning are often a waste. Kids have an amazing imagination; tap into that and they won't be bored often.
Our kids almost don't know how to be bored these days with screens taking over the world, but I love the little S.H.I.Ts to go old skool so I ration the screens and put them away for whole days. When they come to me after two minutes and say 'I'm booooored' I tell them to run round the garden 20 times (it's not very big) then get them to create some challenges that they can all do, like ten star jumps on the trampoline then run to the tree then hula hoop eight times then catch a ball five times. It tends to keep them entertained, keeps them outdoors and gets them exercising. Good old skool fun.
Daddy Poppins from DaddyPoppins
The main thing is getting out and about. A trip to a park or outside area, woods, gardens etc. Somewhere they have free reign to run around and burn off some energy. It doesn't have to be somewhere expensive or even cost anything. Some of the best days out are made by a picnic and large patch of grass!! (Of course slides and swings are an added bonus).
Bridget from Bridie By The Sea