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STILL not Alice
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I immediately thought of Edayna's thread about Parenting Guilt when I got this newsletter in my email today. It's from the Love and Logic site http://www.loveandlogic.com/

Thought I'd share it here -- though I'm probably preaching to the choir! ;)

Pony!


Boredom

Ah, the sounds of summer! Birds chirping, the sound of the ice cream truck, and kids moaning, "I'm bored! There's nothing to do."

Despite popular kid opinion, boredom is essential for the development of healthy problem-solving skills and creativity. Can you imagine the world today if Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Edison, and Henry Ford had never experienced it?

Some parents make the mistake of spending the entire summer making sure that their children are always entertained. In the process, they steal wonderful opportunities for their kids to learn creative ways to entertain themselves. They also create kids who selfishly believe that everything should be entertaining all of the time.

Wiser parents hand the boredom problem right back to their kids by responding, "That's a bummer, what do you think you are going to do?"

When their children answer, "I don't know," they simply give some suggestions and allow responsibility for solving the problem to rest on their youngsters' shoulders: "Some kids decide to draw pictures. How will that work? Other kids decide to build something out of wood. Others decide that they are going to do some reading. Good luck."

If their children continue to complain, they pat them on the back and say, "When kids keep complaining that they are bored, it means that their parents aren't giving them enough chores. There's a broom right over there."

Thanks for reading.

Dr. Charles Fay
 

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My Mom skipped the suggestions of fun things to do ("some kids read...") and went straight to the "Oh, I have some GREAT ideas!" with a quick segue into detestable and time-consuming chores that needed doing.

Clean the fridge
Scrub the bathroom grout with a toothbrush
We were usually out of earshot before she got very far into her list of "great ideas" :D
 

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When my kids moan they are bored I tell them I'll find something to do. They quickly decide that they can find something to do.

Also, when they start fighting amongst each other that is my clue that they are bored and I find them something to do. Coloring, art and crafts, play dough etc....
 
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This is my response as well. "If you can't find something to do I'll find something for you." It's worked every time so far.

.....Alan.
 

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proud to be pro-choice
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Too many "I'm bored" might have prompted me to say 'find something to do' or the proverbial "you can do X", which of course was never well received. Kids need down time, adults need down time. Daydreaming now and then is good. Thinking before acting should be encouraged. Kids should not be entertained 24 X 7 but all too many are (and IMHO, cuz the parents don't want to be inconvienced by parenting). And now we're seeing this in school and college. Some aren't raised to be independent, quite the opposite. Good thing the spouse went to orientation with the soon-to-be college freshman. Orientation is not for the kids, it is for the parents!!! I would have made many enemies LOL!! One kid forgot papers in the car, asks mom to go get them AND SHE DOES!! Then a few minutes later mom asks if there is any way they can have someone ELSE get his books. Helicopter parents are BAD BAD BAD. And aim and flame at will but mothers are reason boys stay boys and don't become men. Allowing them to be a blop in a chair playing video games. Sending the newest video game FED EX to their sons at college. My daughters may be visiting the sperm bank as I'm not seeing a lot of reliable partner/father material out there these days.
 

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"Bored" is considered a dirty word at our house. I call it "rude" to announce that you don't feel your are being entertained in the style you feel you deserve.
 

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What a wonderful article!! I am a clean-freak and my least fav job is cleaning baseboards but I like them to be dust-free at all times. How do I accomplish this? Everytime kids say they are bored...I say, "get a rag and get to the baseboards".

In fact, I am not so nice as to SUGGEST it...if I hear them even SAY "bored", they scrub.....that way they learn not to even let the whining escape their mouth!!

Rachael
 
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