My November 2019 Colorado Academy Lower School Principal’s Blog was titled, “I’m bored,” and I shared the following statement: As an educator, I view boredom as an opportunity for learning and exploration for a learner. Little did I know that beginning in mid-March, I would have the opportunity to embrace this viewpoint in my daily life for an extended period of time.
As the shelter-in-place orders for COVID-19 were communicated, I began to wonder if I might actually become bored on the weekends. I instantly had a flashback to my childhood. If my sister or I uttered the words “I’m bored,” my parents would send us outside to pick up sticks in the yard fallen from the trees as a solution to our proclaimed boredom. We lived in a rural area in Tennessee with at least 50 trees in our immediate yard, and this task typically took at least an hour for us to complete. Picking up sticks quickly became our least favorite activity, and my sister and I plotted together to avoid boredom and picking up sticks at all costs.
As I reflected on my experience as a child, I decided to embrace my educator attitude of viewing the potential for boredom as an opportunity to explore and open myself to new possibilities in the coming weeks. I have generated a list of things to tackle in April and May. They include:
- Learn to play the recorder, so that I can play with our CA students in music class;
- Write and mail 100 postcards;
- Complete 30 online yoga classes;
- Complete a 1,000 piece puzzle;
- Enjoy a walk outside choosing a different route each day;
- Plan our next National Park family camping road trip; and
- Bake a new type of cake each week.
After I created this list, I felt excitement and passion for my newfound time at home. These items are always on my interest list but have never been given the time and attention that I would like to devote to complete them.
I encourage you to brainstorm and create a list with your child to include items for yourself, your child, and your family. It does not need to be long, but it will provide your child with a view of using this time as a pathway for growth and accomplishment. This could be a game-changer for your family in developing an attitude for exploration and curiosity. I hope that in 10 years, your children will be able to think back to the spring of 2020 as a time they avoided boredom and developed new interests and hobbies with you.