Kids Got Imboreditis?

Things are winding downhere as far as formal learning and reporting goes. Real learning; however, never stops around here. No, we do not homeschool year round, so to speak – but informally, I guess we never stop. Even though our last portfolios have been handed in, year end conferences have been attended, next year’s curriculum has been acquired and year end reports are well underway, we still like to maintain a certain level of structure and learning.

The good news is, I’ve never had to listen to my kids say “I’m bored” over a spring or summer break – that is until recently. However; considering my eldest child turned eleven before I had to hear those words, I don’t think we’re doing too badly. One thing I noticed about home learning in our own environment, is that the children seem to function better when a specific level of routine remains consistent over the long summer break. If that routine is broken over the summer break, the children seem to develop what I call: Imboreditis.

The symptoms of Imboreditis include: persistent whining, the droning sound of I’m bored, lethargic lying about, the dragging of feet, and of course: lots of sighing. If you begin to hear the dreaded I’m bored, I’d encourage you to think creatively. Rather than passively allowing more computer or TV time, why not break into that science kit you’ve been holding on to until the appointed time. My kids have been eyeing an electronic work bench in our next year’s curriculum package. I fully intend on breaking it out of it’s cellophane and letting the kids play with it at the first opportunity. Try to refrain from doing what I used to do, which is keeping things hidden until the appointed learning time.

If you have been able to disguise school work as fun up until now, then thinking outside the box should come naturally to you. If your kids smell school work when you break out the science kit; however, you may want to try a more covert approach – perhaps playing with it yourself while the children watch you out of the corner of their eye (hehe), or perhaps involving the secondary homeschool parent as initiator.

Here is a list of attempts I’ve used successfully to ward off Imboreditis:

  1. Keep up weekly trips to the library during the summer (it’s air conditioned too).
  2. Participate in the Library’s summer reading contest.
  3. Schedule weekly physical activities – a weekly hike, or bike ride.
  4. Include weekly social outings: like a beach or park day
  5. Break out the crafts (they make great gifts, too).
  6. Crack open a new science kit that you’ve put aside for next year.
  7. Teach your kids to cook or sew or build something.
  8. Help the kids set up and run a lemonade stand in order to learn about earning money.
  9. Take them to Mom or Dad’s place of employment for the day, and have them volunteer.
  10. Involve them in service: helping at church, volunteering at an organization like WildArc, etc.

June can be a rather fickle month around these parts as far as warm weather is concerned – so why not think creatively before the real warm weather hits? The real hot days are not the days to break out the science kit. Those days are reserved for the beach or the much larger than anticipated pool in our back yard!

What do you do to overcome Imboreditis with your kids?

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9 Comments

Filed under Community, Encouragement, Home Economics, Learning, Life, Summer

9 responses to “Kids Got Imboreditis?

  1. Yeah, I’ve noticed that some form or routine seems to stave off boredom in our house too. As the weather warms up we love to head to the local swimming hole for the day. We usually go armed with snacks, books, paper, drawing supplies, and pool/beach toys. On raining days we love to curl up and watch a movie, read, or play card games. One of my favorite things to do is to find a movie based on a book and read the book together before watching the movie. Always makes for good discussions. We’ve recently discovered great math function review games that can be played with normal playing cards. Fun and educational. Bonus! 😉

  2. Spoken like a true homeschooling mom! I’ve got a related list over at my site. Stop on by!

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