Time weighs heavy on our hands. Everyone is bored with the restrictions we are observing during the Covid-19 pandemic. Of course, social distancing and staying home are the right things to do. And we don’t even know how much longer all of the restrictions will stay in place. If you as a parent are bored, imagine how your kids must feel! They’re doing schoolwork for many hours of the day. Some for too many hours, from what I’ve heard. Yes, they still have their screens. Many are still spending too many hours on them. Some things haven’t changed during the Covid-19 pandemic. Thus here are some tips on dealing with your child’s boredom during covid-19.
Yet you have the feeling that they could be making better use of their time. Kids, and adults too, need exercise. It does positive things for our brains, like enhancing learning. Is there a safe place where your kids can play outside? When is the last time you had a catch with your child, passed a football back and forth, or shot some hoops together? You could start a garden together if you have the space to do so. This is an activity that is life-affirming. It suggests that the future will have something positive to offer.
Are your children old enough and can you trust them enough to allow them to take a walk or ride a bike while maintaining social distance? How about driving them to a friend’s house where they can talk to their friend from the other side of the backyard or from within the car? The weather is getting too nice to let time outside slip by.
How about when your children are indoors and not on a screen? Or at least not on a screen where you and they are looking up something together or watching something educational. Are they interested in starting a hobby with material that is already in the house or that can be purchased online and delivered to your home? How about engaging with them in playing one of those old board games stuffed inside a closet? You and they could learn to meditate or do yoga together if you’re not already sharing these activities. Check out the many apps for mediation and/or yoga. If none of these suggestions sound interesting to you so far, why not check out a website where there are lots of ideas posted by creative people.
When you’re eating together, which I hope you are and which research shows have positive advantages for children, why not tell them about what your life was like when you were their age? Maybe about your parents’ lives at the same age too for a wider historical view. You could all plan a vacation trip for when the pandemic is over. You could plan a trip to some exotic place that would be a dream vacation someday or about which your children have been studying in school.
Perhaps your child is feeling more than upset by the restrictions imposed by the Covid-19 pandemic. Perhaps their emotions are interfering with their behavior toward you or their sibs or with their schoolwork. Maybe they have not been sleeping or eating well for multiple days. Then consider discussing your concerns with one of the therapists at STA who work with parents and children. You can give a call to 201-488-6678 to set up a teleconference intake to discuss your concerns and discuss solutions to try to make things better at home during this boring, and certainly stressful, time.