Most children get bored easily, so it is normal for them to turn to their parents for help to entertain themselves. This occurs, among other things, because children have a very limited ability to focus their attention, so they are quickly distracted and need to change activities. When they don’t find something that motivates them enough, they get bored.
In that case, many parents often feel guilty and try to find all possible options to entertain their children. However, the truth is that boredom is a natural state, it is not something negative, on the contrary, recent research reveals that it can be very beneficial for the psychological development of children.
How does boredom stimulate the little ones?
A study carried out by researchers at the University of Central Lancashire , in the United Kingdom, has shown that boredom is essential to develop children’s creativity. When children are bored, they need new challenges, so if parents do not propose a new activity, they will find something to entertain themselves, giving free rein to their imagination and creativity. In addition, that new activity generally generates much more enthusiasm and a more positive attitude.
In fact, this is not the only study that claims that boredom is beneficial for child development. Other research, this time conducted at the University of East Anglia , also in the UK, has found that getting bored is a good exercise to enhance learning. According to these researchers, boredom is an opportunity for children to risk exploring new areas of knowledge or innovating in those they already know.
Basically, boredom encourages children to do new things and is an opportunity for them to learn to manage their own learning. In fact, it also helps them develop their autonomy and independence, to be more cognitively flexible and more decisive.
Therefore, it is not recommended that parents are always available to play games or give them ideas to hang out with. The children themselves should be left to investigate and invent what to do when they are bored.
Regulate the time you spend on technology
Many parents find it easier to give a child a phone or tablet when they are bored than to encourage them to explore new things. However, the indiscriminate use of technology ends up causing hyperstimulation and limits their creativity. It is not about keeping them away from technology but about limiting its use and motivating them to do other activities, such as outdoor sports or reading.
Diversify your environment
A very effective alternative to stimulate children’s creativity is to offer them an environment rich in stimuli. That is, you can leave some sheets of paper and colored pencils, different toys, a puzzle, construction pieces or board games and skills within reach. In this way the little one will be the one who decides what he wants to do at that moment.
Design a boredom jar together.
It is a very effective technique to combat boredom in a healthy and creative way. In practice, it consists of thinking of different activities and games that the child can do whenever he is bored. Obviously, it should be activities that motivate you a lot so that you don’t get bored later. Each idea will be written on paper and stored in a jar, the jar of boredom. Thus, whenever the little one is bored and does not know what to do, he can go to the jar and get a new idea. In fact, this strategist also favors their autonomy.