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Let them be bored...

Updated: Apr 9, 2020

As we approach the Easter Weekend and the end of the third week in lockdown in the UK, families all over the country are searching websites and Lockdown Facebook Groups for activities to keep their children busy and entertained.

As a mother, godmother, aunt, and teacher I have cared for, entertained and taught a fair few children. My business is a children’s art club so I understand children and their needs and wants on a daily basis.

With the Corona lockdown there is great demand for businesses to provide downloadable activities for children of all ages. However, there is so much available to parents and children on-line that parents are almost spoilt for choice.

I do understand parents who are concerned and worried that their children will not have enough stimulation and things to do but I would also ask you to take a moment to think. To think about children whose parents don’t have timetables packed with activities every half an hour. For children who don’t have an itinerary of online classes waiting to Zoom into. Sometimes children need to make their own fun and they already have a headstart on the grown ups!

That headstart is imagination. Children have the biggest imaginations ever. Bigger than adults. Those imaginations do need inspiring and nurturing but they also need freedom.

That freedom could look like boredom to some. It could look like a morning with nothing planned. With nothing to learn. However, in those moments children get to think and to use their imaginations.

Boredom can be channelled.

Unorganised discovery. Some of the best resources you can give your children are the tools to create.

For example:

• Leave a basket of felt tip pens. A pad of paper. A cardboard box. They will soon turn that box into something amazing!

• A pair of wellies. A box with a lid. A microscope or a pair of tweezers. A notebook to record all the Bugs they find in the garden or on a walk.

• A box of paints and an easel with paper.

• Lego or any building bricks. Or a full recycling bin and a roll of masking tape.

• Marble runs are amazing and can be made with cardboard tubes. Even toilet roll tubes and we all know how many of those have been purchased recently! The more tubes the bigger the run and who says you can’t start upstairs and finish in the garden?

• A box of chalks and a patio or a fence.

The world needs more rainbows!

• Trowels, seeds and earth. Let them discover. Worms and bugs and nature.

• Or simply nothing. Let them use their imaginations. To play. To sing. To dance. To act. To read. To listen. To make. To discover.

We want to inspire your children. We want to help them grow their imaginations. To help them discover who they are and what they want to be. With creativity they can answer their questions and learn without knowing. They can develop areas of their knowledge and personality through drawing and creating. It’s okay to be bored if you know how to channel that feeling into creativity. It’s a powerful skill. One that will equip your child on their lifes journey.

Everything we produce, make and teach here at Dib Dab has that thinking at its core. We are not moulding your children. We are encouraging them to show up with their imaginations and to know how to use them.

Embracing boredom once in a while might help. It will also give you the chance to switch off the printer!

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