Boredom: The Secret to Creativity and Problem Solving.

As a Kindergarten Teacher I often heard the phrase uttered from a little mouth: I’m bored! Now I would think to myself, what is the best way to meet these little ones needs? Boredom may be taken as the essential human condition, to which God, wisdom, or morality are the ultimate answers. Boredom is in fact taken in this sense by virtually all existentialist philosophers. What a great mind space to be in! As adults, we find instant ‘cures’ to our boredom in TV, computers, tablets, and smart phones. It is so easy to quell this discomfort for us. But with children with minds full of creative thought just waiting to bloom, being bored is the empty space to which they can fill with ripe, juicy imagination!

But how does one get from point A to point B? Through work!

~When the children come calling to you for their answers to boredom, we can wait and remain occupied with our own good work. “Yes dear let me finish my sewing, dishes, sweeping, laundry, etc; then we may do something together,” is a perfectly acceptable answer to this. Then take another 10-20 minutes to fully immerse yourself in some good work. More often than not, the children will find something to do on their own; something far more rich and imaginative than our own limited grown-up minds could have thought up. If after that time, they are still in need of your attention, then stop what you are doing and really spend some good quality time with them. Once they have this quality time, then they may feel free to go and spend time to themselves immersed in their own imaginative world.

Here is a great NPR post relating to this topic and including more benefits of play for children.

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One thought on “Boredom: The Secret to Creativity and Problem Solving.

  1. Pingback: Rhythm and Routine « Learning Motherhood

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