How to Deal with a Bored Kid

My 10 year old son loves saying, “I’m bored.” I’ve tried using the phrase said to me, “only boring people get bored,” but to no avail. Here are some ideas.

TIME

School’s out! Yay! Now what?

Kids and parents who once looked forward to the summer break may suddenly find themselves dealing with the aggravation of a familiar complaint: “I’m bored!”

But boredom can also be an opportunity, according to Linda Caldwell, professor of Recreation, Park and Tourism Management and Human Development and Family Studies at Penn State.

“Boredom should be motivational,” she says. “It’s a sign that you need to change what you are doing and do something else.”

In fact, learning to beat boredom is a crucial life skill. Kids who are always bored in their leisure time, says Caldwell, are in danger of developing “long-term boredom, where nothing is ever interesting.” That long-term boredom has been linked to substance abuse, school drop out, and vandalism. And boredom doesn’t just come from having too few activities, Caldwell says. “It could be a sign you have too many.”

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