I Homeschool So They Can Be Bored

Yes, you read that right. I homeschool so they can be bored.

homeschool boredom

So they can have time to get bored.

I think we as a culture have too much aversion to boredom. And we’ve filled our children’s calendars with so many good and wholesome activities that we sometimes fail to give them one thing they so desperately need: Down Time.

Down time without the television, the video games and the social media.

Down time to sit upside down on the couch, feet in the air and head on floor declaring,

I’m so bored!

Down time for those little brains to decompress and to languish awhile in the tedium of inactivity and understimulation.

Down time for those sparks of creativity to light their fires and drive them to self-directed activities and projects of their own choosing.

I began homeschooling for very different reasons, but the longer we do this, the more I appreciate the fact that my children have undirected free time. And after they hang there upside down long enough, they amaze me with some of the things they come up with.

Marble tracks made from cut up cereal boxes, forts out of things they find in the barn, artwork and stories and invented games. Pursuits of their own creativity.

And they only find that creativity after inactivity that stretches long enough for boredom to strike.

I used to think it was just about having free time. Free time would sometimes lead to active and creative pursuits and would sometimes lead to boredom. I didn’t used to value boredom as anything inherently valuable. I only saw it as a necessary side effect of having enough time to do other things.

But as I watched my children struggle through their boredom, trying not to announce it lest I give them a chore, I noticed that their greatest feats of creativity always came after these periods of boredom. It’s as if the boredom itself were paving the way for something better. It’s as if the boredom ietself were a necessary part of shifting gears.

So it didn’t surprise me much when I found out that science, too, was beginning to appreciate the creative power behind boredom. Or, as fantasy author Neil Gaiman says,

” …ย boredom is the place you create from in self-defense.”

So feel free to let your children get bored from time to time. And then watch their creativity soar.

This is part of the Blogging Through the Alphabet Challenge, where I am sharing some homeschool encouragement, from A to Z! Check out what I’ve written so far!

A is for Adventure
B is for Boredom
C is for Christ
D is for Daydreaming
E is for Every day
F is for Failure

Also check out the Homeschool Nook Link Party for more great homeschool posts!

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annette @ A net in Time
Guest

Boredom is good.. very good.

Not good when you are stuck in it.. but the aftermath is good.

Dana
Guest

I agree! (Obviously . . . since that’s what I wrote about.) It doesn’t feel so good when you are in the middle of it and there seems to be a strange commitment to it. Maybe it’s just me, but when I feel bored, nothing sounds particularly interesting. I think that’s when you are looking for something deeper and more meaningful and you just need time to wrestle through until you find it.

Linda S
Guest

Love this! Boredom spawns the most amazing things and gives our brains a chance to kick into gear. It often leads to daydreaming and castle-in-the-sky building ๐Ÿ™‚ Thank you for reminding us to let them be bored!

Dana
Guest

Yes! I was always called a daydreamer when I was a kid. I never thought that was a bad thing!

Melissa
Guest

Some of the best games my friend and I came up with when we were little were a direct result of boredom. Boredom can be great!

Dana
Guest

Here, too. Those invented games are the best, even if I can’t always decipher their rules!

Carol E
Guest

LOL! Mine have also learned not to voice their boredom for concern that Mom will add to their chores list. Boredom gives them a chance to hi the reset button on their brains – something I wish I could do more often these days.

Dana
Guest

It is the best way to keep the whining down. I don’t mind them lounging around (upside down in a chair is a favorite position of the younger ones), but whine and mom has an immediate relief.

Peter
Guest
Peter
Lori
Guest

Absolutely! One of the greatest joys of homeschooling!

Dana
Guest

That’s a fun way to put it! ๐Ÿ™‚ The joys of boredom . . .

Mother of 3
Guest

YES! I definitely find my kids going to town on some wondrous projects after having spent quite some time being bored.

Dana
Guest

I LOVE that creativity!

Michelle
Guest

I have also written about boredom and I agree with you 100%. It’s amazing how much we learn as Homeschool Moms!

Dana
Guest

Can’t wait to read it! And yes, sometimes I think I learn more than they do.

Barbie
Guest

I love this!

Amanda H
Guest

I love letting my kids get bored! It is so fun to see what they come up with. Most times it is something better than I would have thought for them to do!

TaMara Sloan
Guest

This is something I need to do better at. I know my children don’t have nearly enough time to get bored so that they have to pursue something to do on their own and be a little creative. Part of it is that they are so busy with scheduled activities, especially the older ones who play school sports. It was so much easier when they were younger.

Brenda Prince
Guest

Love this. I have never really thought about it like that, but yes, Boredom can indeed be a good thing.