Learn How to Make a Bored Jar

How to Make a Bored Jar

One of my favorite phrases, and one I tell my children when they say they're bored is, "Only boring people get bored". I saw this quote somewhere many years ago and have used it ever since. In a nutshell this quote is saying that you need to use your imagination, think outside the box, empower yourself to learn to occupy your time- don't BE boring. And while I've enjoyed this time to slow down and spend more quality time with my family, this time has also allowed myself and my children to really explore what we are passionate about and what brings us joy, outside of work, school, and activities. I think for our family, we've all been going at a 'Too-fast' pace for too long. 

how to make a bored jar

This new way of life has probably effected my daughter more than anything. She's 14 and she's a competitive gymnast. She's been in the sport for over 9 years, and while gymnastics offers many positives, it's year around and very consuming. She trains 20 hours a week on top of school, studying, etc. This sport has left her with very little time to "be bored", but it's also left her with very little time to develop a hobby, or a love of something outside the gym. 

The tears were many the first week. Imagine such a structured life for as long as you can remember, and then nothing. Nothing. We talked a lot during this time and I tried to throw out so many suggestions: knitting, painting, online piano lessons, writing, you name it. Nothing could fill this void for her. Of course as time has gone on, she's settled in. She's reading more and dancing. She's been on many bike rides and a picnic with her baby brother. She's hammock'ed and tried her hand at the piano. And she made a "Bored Jar". 

If you're like me and you're trying to help your child fill the void they're experiencing with social distancing, a Bored Jar is exactly what your family needs.  Simply find an empty Ball jar or any empty/washed condiment jar. Feel free to decorate your Bored Jar with stickers, labels, signatures of your children. We personally had several popsicle sticks here at home, so we wrote down our fun and simple activities on each stick. You can paint the sticks or keep them plain. You can also write ideas down on little pieces of paper. This is your family's Bored Jar, make it what you want. 

Ideas for your Bored Jar

Our family has several years between our oldest and youngest child ,so we needed to come up with several ideas that were tailored to school-age and teen-aged children. The popsicle sticks were color coded accordingly. Below you'll find ideas for preschoolers and beyond. 

Bored Jar Ideas for Preschool/Grade School-Age Children

Some of the ideas for preschool and grade school aged children are:

  • Do a puzzle
  • Blow bubbles
  • Brush the dog
  • Playdoh
  • Play with balloons
  • Dance party
  • Log roll down a hill
  • Do shadow puppets in a dark closet
  • Make cards for family, friends, people in the hospital
  • Jump up and down 20 times
  • Make sock puppets with old socks
  • Have a puppet show
  • Borrow moms phone to take pictures of nature
  • Make a bird feeder
  • Make a family band
  • Put up the tent out back
  • Play in the bathtub
  • Research the Titanic on the computer
  • Find five toys to donate
  • Make something on Pinterest
  • Play in the sprinkler
  • Race mom or dad
  • Hit a whiffle ball off a tee

Top Ideas for a Bored Jar

Bored Jar Ideas for Teenage Children

Some activities for teens might include:

  • Tie-dye a shirt
  • Make a duct-tape bracelet
  • Create a memory jar
  • Make a lemonade stand
  • Walk the dog
  • Have a water balloon fight
  • Make a music video
  • Write a play and perform it
  • Create a photo album
  • Create an art journal
  • Bake cookies
  • Make ice cream
  • Draw a self portrait
  • Look through a cookbook and make something
  • Play checkers
  • Play catch
  • Plant a mini-flower pot garden
  • Practice photography
  • Train the dog a new trick
  • Pack a picnic
  • Create chalk drawings outside
  • Work on a short story or novel
  • Style your sister or moms hair
  • Model with clay
  • Knit a scarf or washcloth
  • Play tennis against the garage

As you can see the ideas are many. Just use your imagination, let your ideas flow, and surprise your kiddos with a Bored Jar. They'll love it and more importantly, they won't "be bored". 

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