Bored kids? Give them a paper towel

Bored kids? Give them a paper towel
Bored kids? Give them a paper towel

Are your kids bored? Good!

Scientific studies have shown allowing children to become bored actually boosts their creativity*.

But sometimes you might need to give your kids a gentle creative nudge. Or–when it is the third day of being cooped up with incessant whining and squabbling because the flu struck during your spring-break-this-really-sucks-stay-cation–you might need to forget the gentle nudge and march them directly toward an activity. As in now. Right. Now.

Ok, now you can relax. Because the best part about this activity is that you don’t need any special supplies. I can almost guarantee that you have everything you need right in your home.

My daughter created this activity last week when she had gotten banned from screen time (ban number 437). As a result of the frequency of this consequence, she has gotten quite adept at finding alternative entertainment. Subsequently, she sat at the kitchen table with a pile of Sharpies and a piece of paper towel while I made dinner.

When I saw what she had made, I was blown away.

Paper Calliope-paper-towel-1-web

This could be the most inexpensive craft ever

Your kids can easily do the same. To create the art, just give them a square of paper towel and let them choose two different colors of Sharpies. Then have them fill in each dot of the paper towel’s pattern with the Sharpies, repeatedly using the same color pattern. Make sure to have newspaper or another protective covering beneath their work surface, because the permanent market will bleed through the paper towel.

Now, if you really want to make an extra trip to the store, you can find different brands of paper towels for your kids to decorate. Here is another pattern my daughter completed.

Paper Calliope paper-towel-2-web

In addition to creating a colorful piece of art, I realized that if I could get her to create more of these, I could combine them with Mod Podge and other materials for some mixed media scrapbooking. Oh the possibilities!


*Do you actually expect me to provide a footnote with hard scientific data evidenced in numerous studies? Pffft. Google it people.

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