Summer Ramadan Boredom Busters

According to the Center for Boredom, Interest and Entertainment, 26 percent of respondents in a 1952 survey claimed that boredom was a serious problem in their lives. By 1978, that number had risen to 38 percent. A number of experts say that today, despite countless distractions via technology, people remain bored, often more so than before.

Being bored in summer is normal for most kids. But add fasting in Ramadan to the mix and the situation can get even more difficult for parents.

Between their own waning energy and whining, warring siblings, mothers and fathers struggle to keep their kids entertained and engaged. Relying on television or technology is often an escape route, but one most parents only reluctantly turn to.

While it’s sometimes good to let kids experience boredom, too much of it can lead to problems like alcohol and drug use, hanging out with bad company, or dangerous risk-taking. This is why keeping kids engaged in healthy activities is so important.

These are some budget-friendly ways to help kids of different ages use their time wisely during the blessed month. Please share your own at the bottom of the article.

FOR ALL AGES

  • Suhur and Fajr on the beach: the early morning hours in summer are usually the best for a visit. Pack up your Suhur and a large blanket for prayer, then enjoy your pre-dawn feast by the waves and sand. Don’t forget to pack the toothbrushes and an extra pair of clothes. 
  • Clean out the latest school year’s papers, keep what needs to be kept, and make a scrapbook out of it. 
  • Join the local library’s summer reading program. This allows kids of all ages to set goals for reading and win prizes for doing so. Plan weekly trips to the air-conditioned havens so you can get a break. 
  • Write old-fashioned letters by hand to grandparents, cousins, friends, etc. 
  • Decorate the house for Ramadan. Even if the blessed month has already started, making your space look festive builds the Ramadan spirit. 
  • If they’re fasting, insist that they nap in the afternoon.
  • Fix old or broken appliances. This can be especially entertaining for kids with an engineering bent. Just make sure to not let them give up too easily. 
  • Go letterboxing or geocaching and leave some Ramadan- or Islamic-themed items (e.g. stamps, stickers, etc.) if you take an item. 
  • Islamic arts and crafts can easily be found on Pinterest. These range from coloring to cake decorating and origami. Put them to use or develop your own unique ideas based on them.

FOR KIDS AGES 6 AND UNDER

  • Daily visit to the park. Half an hour to an hour here is an excellent way for them to burn off that steam, calm them down, and nip sibling fights for at least some time.
  • Visit a different park in your park district or suburb every few days to add variety and fun.
  • Visit an affordable play center that offers seating and air conditioning for you, and hours of fun jumping and burning calories for them. 
  • Visit to a museum on a free or discounted admission day. 
  • Watch all of the Adam’s World series. Islamic entertainment for this age at its best! 
    Take them grocery shopping at a store that has kid-friendly shopping carts. Let them pick their ride and while you’re there, point out all of the food Allah has blessed us with in each aisle and how fasting teaches us to be grateful for it.

FOR KIDS AGES 7 TO 10

  • Memorize one new Surah in Ramadan 
  • Teach them how to do their own laundry
  • Organize a bake sale to help the hungry
  • Take a babysitting class through the Red Cross or your park district. These are usually short (three hours) and offer great info they can use to help take care of younger siblings or eventually start their own babysitting business. 
  • Hand them a cheap digital camera and let them capture unique Ramadan moments of their day.

FOR KIDS AGES 11 To 14

  • Contact a homeless shelter and ask for a list of items they need. Then go shopping with your tween for the items, asking them to contribute a set amount for the cause. Bring them with you when you drop the items off. 
  • Make a short, inspiring video on their cellphone about their fasting experience. Upload it on viddy.com
  • Help them find a recitation of one Surah to listen to on their phone or online. 
  • Meet up with friends at the local Masjid for prayer in the afternoon, preferably Dhuhr prayer. Text each other beforehand so you can make it happen. 
  • Snapchat funny Ramadan-related photos, like falling asleep during Suhur, of those last moments before Iftar, etc. 
  • Tween years are hard, and while a kid may share their issues with friends online, this can backfire if there’s a record of what he or she wrote or took a photo of. Encourage your child to start an old-fashioned diary on pen and paper which is far less prone to public consumption.

FOR KIDS 14 AND UP

  • Help a younger sibling learn how to read the Quran or memorize a verse 
  • Take over the entire Iftar preparation with help from the other kids in the house. This teaches leadership, project management, discipline, punctuality, and team-building skills
  • For teens with their drivers’ license, recruit them to drop off items to charity for not just your own family but other families who can bring their donations to your home as well.
  • Put together a photo montage of themselves for every day of Ramadan. Choose a specific moment, like eating Suhur or taking the first bite or sip at Iftar. 
  • Snapchat funny Ramadan-related photos, like falling asleep during Suhur, of those last moments before Iftar, etc. 
  • On a trip to the grocery store, Teach them grocery shopping skills like how to find the best price on an item, and how to spend according to a pre-determined budget for the week. Remind them to avoid waste and to choose more healthy foods over processed stuff.

Comments

Nice ideas to keep kids engage.. we can have more like telling them islamic stories and some cute incidents.

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noida

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