The family road trips have been logged and summer camp has come and gone. And now your kids are … officially bored. Annoying for you? A little. Good for them? Yes! After all, having open days with nothing on the iCal leaves room to work on imagination and creative thinking skills. In order to help you light the spark, we’ve got 25 brilliant responses to the words “I’m bored.” Read on to see them all.

photo: John Morgan via Flickr

1. That’s okay. Trust us, they’ll find something to do.

2. What have you read today? Logging minutes with a book, especially during the summer, is an easy way to pass an afternoon.

3. Good, because the dishwasher needs to be unloaded. Just watch how fast your kids won’t be bored anymore.

4. Go hit the pavement. Send you kids outside with chalk for the afternoon. They can draw, play hopscotch, or organize a funny photo-taking session.

5. Put on a fashion show. Tell your kids to select five of their favorite outfits and choose five of their favorite dance songs. Then, have them put on a fashion show, strutting their stuff to each song.

6. Go pitch a tent. Indoor or out, there’s something about a tent. Offer up snacks and ghost stories once they’ve built their domain.

photo: Caitlin Regan via Flickr

7. Let’s call a friend. Add another kid to the mix and watch the bored blues disappear.

8. How about a puppet show? Drape a long tablecloth over the dining room table. Then, have the kids use it as a theater curtain to put on a puppet show from under the table.

9. Take some pictures. Give older kids a camera and tell them to take pictures of items around the house that meet certain criteria: items that start with the letter “L,” items that are blue, favorite places in the house.

photo: Photography by Sakura via Flickr

10. How about a tea party? Brew a batch of real iced tea and have a party.

11. Go get the jar. Make an “I’m Bored” jar as a family by writing down 25-50 things your kids can do. They can simply pull an idea from the jar for a fun activity they may have even suggested!

12. It’s time to find answers. Have your kid make a list of five questions she’s always wanted the answer to. Then, show her how to find it in a reference book, online, or by calling someone who knows the answer to share their knowledge.

photo: Jessica Lucia via Flickr

13. How does your room look? This is a great way to get kids off your back.

14. Go outside. The possibilities are endless.

15. Write a letter. They can learn the lost art of how to write a formal, handwritten letter and how to address and mail it to a relative.

photo: Familjen Helsingborg via Flickr

16. Let’s get physical. Teach your kid how to do a somersault, a cartwheel, and a headstand.

17. I guess it’s time to go through your toys. We’re betting your kids will find something at the bottom of the toy box that’s absolutely fascinating.

18. Ever seen an at-home car wash? Beat the heat with a little suds thrown in for fun.

photo: Woodley Wonderworks via Flickr

19. It’s time to play cards. Teach your kids (and maybe yourself!) how to play an old-school card game.

20. Let’s get organized. Fung Shui a chaotic closet or area of your home.

21. Let’s look for shapes in the clouds. There’s nothing better on a lazy summer day.

 

22.What can you build in an hour? Give them an open-ended STEM challenge and see what your kids produce.

23. Tell me something fun you haven’t done in a while. Jostle their memory and more than likely, they’ll come up with an answer.

24. Great! You can help me with dinner. There are two possibilities here. One—your little one will leap at the chance to be in the kitchen. Two—she’ll go entertain herself elsewhere. Either one works for us!

25. Me too! Let’s think of something fun to do together. Sometimes, the words “I’m bored” are your cue to stop everything and spend one-on-one time with your kiddos.

Do you have any ideas to add to this list? Share with us in a Comment below! 

— Beth Shea & Gabby Cullen