When students say “I’m bored”…

The cure for boredom is curiosity. There is no cure for curiosity. –   Ellen Parr

When our children are feeling bored at school, we start by working with them on how THEY, themselves, can ENRICH and add DEPTH, BEAUTY, and DETAIL to their work – whatever it is. We try to put the responsibility on them. We remind them that, even if it seems “done”  they can tap into their imagination and find ways to add more depth, more creativity, and different possibilities for a product. This does not mean that us Teachers and Parents do not ALSO have a responsibility to offer support and enrichment and course, helping them find ways to be creative. But, what we really want to do is assist the STUDENT to become better able to self-regulate, to advocate for themselves and to deal with that feeling of “not knowing what to do” – a skill they will always need. Always. 


In Math: Can they write a story that is based on the math work they were doing?  Can they create another question (more difficult or complicated) but ends up with the same answer?

Have the students create a TEST for the other students that is based on the work in class. Can they find different patterns in the question?

In Writing:  Can they add more detail or try to use cursive? Can they write a different ending?  Can they create another piece that is a continuation? Can they be challenged to go through every word and add a different word? How can their writing be put into an oral medium (podcast)?

In Reading: Can they create a character sketch or comic based on the book? Can they create a script? Can they find a similar book? Can they add another medium such as art or music?

Suggestions (in the classroom or small groups)

Organize LOCKER, Binder and Books

Make a List


*have students empty locker, empty desks. Bring everything into an area away from others and help them sort. Have labels ready, page dividers and a trash bin!

MINDFULNESS Dyads/Listening Exercises

From: https://oneminddharma.com/mindfulness-exercises/



Brain Break Read a Story together

Squiggly Story,


Journaling Allow / Encourage  students to work on a bullet journal page List of Bullet Journal Ideashttps://kalynbrooke.com/life-and-style/time-management/bullet-journal-collection-ideas/
Olgy Allow students to explore a specific topic of interest and chose a specific related activity. https://www.amnh.org/explore/ology


Digital Break Out Room In Breakout EDU games, players work collaboratively to solve a series of critical thinking puzzles in order to open a locked box. Each Breakout EDU starter kit can be used to play hundreds of games. Sign up for your Breakout EDU account here. https://www.breakoutedu.com/welcome/
“To Do”

Maker Bins

Bins can be set aside for sewing, art, poetry, origami, crafts, puzzles.
Take A course of interest Online Courses! Why not Free online courses: https://www.edx.org/professional-certificate/microsoft-introduction-to-computer-science
Create Music Chrome Music Lab is a collection of experiments that let anyone, at any age, explore how music works. They’re collaborations between musicians and coders, all built with the freely available Web Audio API. These experiments are just a start. Check out each experiment to find open-source code you can use to build your own. https://musiclab.chromeexperiments.com/Experiments
Experimentation and Play AI Experiments is a showcase for simple experiments that make it easier for anyone to start exploring machine learning, through pictures, drawings, language, music, and more. https://experiments.withgoogle.com/ai


Word Work

Etymology & Greek and Latin Roots

From Birdeed: “My class studied Greek and Latin word origins by developing names for spells, new Pokemon, and strange inventions. Each creation had to be constructed with at least two Greek or Latin roots, prefixes, or suffixes.  Some examples included: Acubible – a sharp bookAquacrat – a person who lives  in water

Here are 111 Greek and Latin word parts to use in class


list of English idioms.


From: http://www.byrdseed.com/vocabulary-skills-for-gifted-students/


http://www.byrdseed.com/vocabulary-skills-for-gifted-students/ “Comparing vocabulary, grammar, and even writing systems can give students a new point of view about langauge arts”. Cognates are an interesting way to find parallels across languages. Some examples (taken from Wikipedia):

Night (English), nuit (French), nacht (German), natt (Swedish)

shalom (Hebrew), salaam (Arabic), and selam (Amharic)



Antagonyms are words that have the two opposing meanings. Definitely look at the link, but “bound” is an example since it means moving (“My train was bound for Portland”) and immobile (“I was bound and gagged.”). http://www-personal.umich.edu/~cellis/antagonym.html
Weekly Circles

(from a teacher)


Every Friday, I had a Weekly Tea Party (Circle). We used this time to wrap up the week, discuss major learnings, major setbacks and what is in store for next week. We also used this time to say “sorry” or “thank you” so that students could start the following week feeling fresh.


Research what it means to be ‘Gifted’ focusing on benefits and struggles


Have students submit a writing reflection on one article.

To Do Lists – Clipboards Activity:

Students each had a clipboard (hung on wall in classroom) where they would keep and regularly update their “to-do” lists, learning goals and sometimes important information.  This helped me (homeroom teacher) know how much they were getting from other teachers as well. It also helps students take responsibility for what they had to do in the short and long term.


Have a “Bin” Set up. Students can practise their spacial reasoning and math skills by finding different patterns to fold/create.


(Brain Break)

Have an on-going puzzle in the room

Research on using Puzzles: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1C_klVIDCCM704e9YmvZhYIP9rBku0oyLIig6gYOegBA/edit
Online Logic Puzzle

(Brain Break)

Choose an online Logic Puzzle

Online Chess Game

(Brain Break)

Have students spend some time out by playing online Chess.


Why Chess (Research) https://docs.google.com/document/d/1C_klVIDCCM704e9YmvZhYIP9rBku0oyLIig6gYOegBA/edit (CC ZPipe)

Math Challenges

Have students write down a few challenges to present to their classmates.



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