I made a boredom buster jar. I have plans for it to expand as I get time to add the additional fun tasks and ideas I have but wanted to get it started ASAP so got going on a smaller scale. The basic premise is that I have activities written out onto easy to access craft sticks then sorted and classified so we can find the right thing to do at the perfect time.
To get the classification going. I used my old trusty pal a spreadsheet. You can access a copy here for your own inspiration. Check back in a few weeks as I'll be adding more often. I grouped activities how they would work best for us: Arts/Crafts, Learning, those specific to each child, outdoors, and then those which are very specific. In addition I mark the activities that require me present the whole time.
I then wrote each activity onto a craft stick. If I was afraid it was something I'd forget the specifics for I placed a link to the idea on the spreadsheet. For some learning games and ideas this was really helpful!! Next I gave a color to each category type in the spreadsheet and painted/colored a circle of each on the back of the craft sticks. This should make it easy to give the kids a pick of a whole category quickly.
What I envision for our Boredom Busters is the next time we're having squabbling amongst the boys, the TV has been on too much, or someone is bored they can pick from the sticks and I'll set up the proposed activity for them. If I'm cooking dinner or otherwise busy I'll eliminate the ones that require me present the whole time. If they haven't had much education fun that day I might only give them the learning sticks and so on. The kids won't be given choices of which activities to do they'll just pick blindly from the sticks I hand them. Don't feel bad if you just can't handle another mess some day and hide all the painting or crafting themed sticks!!
Post back how your Boredom Buster is working out if you try this idea!!! You can see more ideas for your own sticks on my Pinterest boards by following me here.