How to beat the boredom blues with tweens for the summer

Boredom Jar with ideas


This sounds about as easy as setting a schedule for a newborn but believe me when I tell you that it’s important. With summer vacation about to get underway, I realized now, more than ever that my kids need a schedule in order for all of us to get through it unscathed.

So, how do we do that?

Well, since my girls aren’t old enough to stay home alone just yet, camp is on the agenda. And it’s on the agenda for the month of July. And coordinating that camp with their friends is a win-win. For those days when they don’t want to wake up and go to camp, we can remind them that their friends will be there, which helps both sets of parents.

While my kids basically started saying from the end of summer last year that they didn’t want to go to camp, unfortunately I don’t have the luxury of staying home. I am a working mom, which means, I need all the help I can get during summer vacation.

I’m also part of what you could call the Sandwich Generation. And while I am blessed to have my parents and my in-laws all relatively close by, it’s a lot to ask them to watch my kids every day. Yes, they are pretty self-sufficient now, basically they really only need to fed at lunchtime, as they are old enough to get their own drinks and snacks, and entertain themselves, but I think it’s important for them to get outside and play and have some fun. And as much as they say they don’t want to go to camp, I know the nightly pick-ups will be filled with stories of what they did all day.

Day camp is basically play day every day. They get to do arts and crafts, an excursion, have fun with their friends and visit the splash pad every week.

I mean, sign ME up please!!

But what happens to us once July is over? There still four full weeks of summer ahead of us, and no real activities planned? Well, on the days that they are home (because this mama has to work), I can guarantee you that they will entertain themselves for a portion of the day. But….there will come a time when those inevitable words will come out of their mouths….

“I’m bored.”

To combat that, we’ve filled the jar with popsicle sticks. On each stick is one idea for them to try/do.

I won’t lie, that dreaded line, “I’m bored” can send me over the edge. Especially when they have a room full of toys and books at their disposal. But I also get it, sometimes they just want to be told or given something to do. So, the hope behind this jar is they will pull a stick and get inspired to do something new.

Ideas to beat the dreaded “I’m bored” proclamation


Some ideas include:

Go outside Make friendship bracelets
Have a picnic Write your own comic book
Write a play and perform it Make up a dance
Read a book Write a menu for dinner
Make a collage Create a scavenger hunt
Play cards Run through the sprinkler
Tidy your room Take a dip in the pool
Write a story Do a makeover
Do a puzzle Collect old toys to donate
Create a board game Make a Lego city or town
Create an obstacle course (inside or outside) Have a fashion show
Call your grandparents to say hi Make a bucket list
Write a letter and mail it Bake a cake
Make a spa day Perform a lip-sync battle


We have come up with enough ideas to help get us through August, and they girls are excited to give them all a try.

I’ve also stocked up my craft station. I keep old magazines, glue, scissors, pompoms, ribbon, glitter glue, cardstock, pipe cleaners, stamps, inks, and more to help to spark their imagination and creativity any time they want!


What ideas did we miss? Comment below with your ideas on what else we can add to the jar!

Leave a Reply