My Kindergartner is Bored. Again.

We live in a sad, sad world when the thing I hear most often from the mouth of my kindergartner is, “This is boring.

Enter my obsession with the nineteenth century and the haute-Européen feeling of ennui. All the most elite members of society suffered from ennui. You know, the ones who weren’t scrambling to put food in their children’s mouths or trying to figure out how to survive the winter or pay the rent or not die of consumption.

Merriam-Webster.com enlightens us about this terrible state of being:

noun \  en·nui  \ ‘än-ˈwē’ A feeling of weariness and dissatisfaction : boredom 

Dear six-year-old: You don’t know the meaning of boredom.

Here’s the ugly truth for parents with small children in 2017: over-stimulation is just the normal state of affairs. Children {and adults} are bombarded with advertising, apps, games, and more, twenty-four-seven. It’s nonstop. Now, waiting in the doctor’s office has to be accompanied with looking at pictures on Mom’s phone. Minutes spent in caravan line waiting for brother or sister to get out of school are passed watching a DVD in the minivan. While Brother has a turn on Mom’s tablet, Sister has to click on a TV show to pass the time.

WHAT?!

Something is rotten in the land of twenty-first century parenting, when our children need to have a screen or be entertained at all times or that sing-song whiny voice declaring “I’m bo-ored!” starts up.

I informed my children this summer that any use of this phrase would be immediately followed by the miraculous invention of a new chore. It seemed to work well for the summer, but now that school has started and we spend a lot of time in the car, the dreaded phrase is back, and I’m having to re-evaluate my consequences.

When we are sitting in the car on our {gasp!} twenty-minute drive to church, I can’t exactly make my 6-year-old empty the dishwasher. Or sweep the kitchen. And if I wait until we’ve gotten home, I feel that the punishment A) is no longer appropriate and B) is not teaching the intended lesson.

My Creative Consequence

For once, instead of just griping about a problem in my post, I actually have a solution! {Can you believe it?!}

The beauty of my child being in kindergarten and learning how to write is that for this situation, I am able to take a page out of Miss Krabappel‘s book and have my child write lines. In this case, the line for my budding author to write is “Life is not boring.” We are starting basic here because I want to get my point across. Also, I don’t really feel that she needs to be writing anything Shakespearean yet. Small words and a short sentence are the order of the day.

I have created an easy downloadable page for you to use, too, if you have a boredom-wracked child in your house and want to use my medieval punishment method. Download it here. Please use it responsibly, so no one calls the authorities on you.

What are your creative solutions to the phrase “I’m bored” in your home? Share them with us!

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