It's school holidays. The boys are home, and this morning they are bored. Or so they keep telling me. Over and over and over again.
As I contemplate possibly leaving home, I remember something I once read from Charles Eisenstein, author of "Ascent of Humanity".
Here is how to make a child bored:
- "First and foremost, keep him indoors so that the infinitude of nature, its endless variation and chaotic messiness is replaced by a finite, orderly, predictable realm."
- "Second, through television and video games, habituate him to intense stimuli so that everything else seems boring by comparison."
- "Third, eliminate as much as possible any unstructured time with other children, so that he loses his capacity for creative play and needs entertainment instead."
- "Fourth, shorten his attention span with fast-paced programming, dumbed-down books, and frequent interruptions of his play."
- "Fifth, hover over him whenever possible to stunt his self-trust and make him dependent on outside stimulation."
And so I stand firm. I will not cave into demands for computer games or TV. I will not be their entertainment director (all the time). I will invite some mates over. And they will go outside and play.
- "Sixth, hurry him from activity to activity to create anxiety about time and eliminate the easy sense of timelessness native to the young."
I know from many school holidays of experience that eventually they become so bored with being bored that they use their creative thinking to come up with alternatives, that can often keep them going all day.
Is "Mum, I'm bored" a familiar refrain in your house? What do you do?