“Boredom always precedes a period of great creativity.” – Robert M. Pirsig
Summer’s coming up, and that means vacation time! While there is a certain exhilaration to the thought of having lots of free time, it is accompanied by the chance of a common refrain – “Mommy, I’m bored!”
Toddlers are hyperactive little bunnies, bouncing around all the time, needing a good deal of stimulation. Of course, they need their quiet time too. Most experts agree that it’s good for children to be bored once in a while, so that they can find ways to entertain themselves, left to their own devices.
However, every Mom has a limit beyond which she’ll explode. When she’s already running behind her day’s tasks and there’s a little toddler hounding her, she’s ready to collapse in tears. For such occasions, we suggest you keep a ‘Boredom Box’ ready, a magical box that’ll open up many wonders for your toddler, enough for him to leave you in peace! If you’re not sure about how to set this up, here’re some things you can use to make a boredom box for toddlers.
How to make Boredom Box for toddlers
Of course your child already has crayons, we know that! But put a new pack in your boredom box, a brand you don’t usually buy. The new packaging will get him excited to start coloring!
2. White Paper
When you have crayons, plain paper becomes necessary if you don’t want your little Rembrandt decorating your freshly painted walls! You can reuse the backs of receipts that come with your online orders or other unwanted circulars.
3. Colored Paper
Not just white paper, colored paper can come in good use too! Your toddler can fold it to make a boat or anything that he likes, or even cut shapes, which brings us to:
4. Kid friendly Scissors
You need something to cut up those shapes, don’t you? Keep a pair of safety scissors that are sharp enough to cut paper but blunt enough to keep fingers safe.
5. Non toxic Glue Stick
Now you’ve got paper and scissors, the only thing left to make a collage is glue! Draw a simple picture on paper and ask your young one to tear up little bits of colored paper and stick them on! That’ll keep him busy for a while!
Keep a variety of books – interactive board books, activity books, and coloring books. Make sure these aren’t books he’s read before, or he’ll lose interest and the whole point of your boredom box will be defeated!
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Toddlers are old enough to use stickers, especially the puffy types. They’re inexpensive, so get packets of different motifs and patterns. They’ll love sticking them on paper to make their own designs.
What child doesn’t like the feeling of squishing soft clay between his fingers? Get those small tubs in a color or two to avoid overwhelm. Let him do what he wants in it; play doh is great for tactile stimulation.
This is the only ‘toy’ item in this list, and you have to be a little smart here. If your child is used to Lego bricks, keep some wooden blocks in the box or vice versa. Blocks present an unlimited range of play options and are great for boredom.
I know, you probably want to cut down your child’s screen time, but 20 minutes of a DVD once in a while doesn’t hurt! Keep a few DVDs in the boredom box that are not of your little one’s regular cartoon shows – he’s quite likely to have seen all the episodes! Pocoyo, Kipper and Sid the Science Kid are great choices for this age group.
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That’s quite a collection of stuff! You know your child best, so don’t hesitate from customizing the Boredom Box to his or her liking; after all, you want the box to work!
Article By Fabida Abdulla
Fabida is an erstwhile Software Engineer and current Freelance Writer cum Stay at Home Mom to her boisterous 6 year old. In between all the writing, baking, nagging, reading and cuddling, she manages to blog a bit about her crazy life at Shocks and Shoes.
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