Beating boredom
May 16, 2011
by Jenni Sebora

Soon we will hear the words, “I’m bored. What is there to do?”

Summer vacation is just around the corner. Although our children are looking forward to some lazier days ahead and a break from their school routine, the words and feelings of boredom soon enter into the picture.

Although it is good for our children to use their imagination when so much of their school days are planned out for them, there are things we can do, as parents, to help our children not reach the state of boredom quite so quickly.

With a couple, to a few weeks, left of school, depending on where your wizards are attending school, now is the time to start helping your children set a few goals for what they would like to learn, delve into, try or achieve this summer. Some ideas set in their minds, can help set the stage for their summer days.

How about if the plan is for them to stay active? This may include walks, bike riding, swimming, situps, or whatever exercise may interest the child.

Even younger children can develop a hobby. Photography, for example, can be an interesting and inexpensive hobby. A $3 disposable camera and a pretty sunset, and you’re on your way.

Does your child have a library card yet? The libraries in our area offer a wide array of books, videos, and music – for free.

Most of the cities in our area have celebrations that have free activities for children. Almost all of these have a parade to look forward to, and some also have “Kilddie parades.” Winsted’s Bratbuster Days has a scavenger hunt for coins buried in a pile of sand. A child’s dream – getting money for getting dirty.

How about a night of star gazing? A blanket and a dark spot is all you need. A star chart is available at www.midnightkite.com, or if you are looking for something a little more high tech, the Onan Observatory at Baylor Regional Park offers public star gazing at the observatory usually two nights a month from June through October. More information can be obtained from the Carver County Park Office at (952) 466-5250.

If your children are not tired yet, the McLeod County 4-H is offering a series of summer day camps featuring, among other things, rocketry, gardening, and LEGO robotics. Most of the programs are $5 to $7. Contact Jill Grams at (800) 587-0770 if you’re interested.

With a little advance planning your children will be asking, “Is summer over already?”