Makeup. Hair. Waiting to go on stage. Sooooo much waiting is involved for our little dancers at a recital or competition performance. We ask a lot of them on these days!
Since my daughter is involved in her regular recitals and competition performances, I wasn’t really comfortable with the amount of tablet/phone time she was getting so often on the weekends. So, I tried to find some alternative activities to keep her mind occupied while she waits. And waits. And waits . . .
Coloring and Stickers. Simple and effective, we’ve blazed a path through most of the cheapie coloring books you can find at the Dollar Store. But after a while, even those got to be a bit boring! What I do now to combat coloring and sticker boredom is keep a secret stash that is only brought out on recital or performance day. This way, it’s fresh and different from the regular coloring and sticker books that we use on a regular day. I found an “adult” coloring book that is all patterns and mosaics – it’s intricate but not too difficult and it lets her explore her creativity outside of the Disney sphere of branded merchandise.
Books. An obvious one for sure! My daughter is started to read on her own and enjoys bringing along the chapter book she’s working on at the time. However, this reading time is much different than when we are at home — since I’m busy working on her hair or makeup, I can’t be as present as I usually am when we read together. I also load up my tablet with kids picture books and audio books for a more interactive and independent reading activity! Audio books are great since she can experience a book that’s a little more advanced without stopping to ask me what the word is.
Podcasts. Another tablet tool, podcasts are a great way to hear a story, learn new facts, or just zone out while hearing some grown-ups act silly! We love “Wow in the World” from NPR. Each week, they explore a topic inspired by a child’s question, ranging from space exploration to animal habitats — they even did an episode on “bee barf.” Just the kind of silly yet academic content that holds her attention while getting mascara applied!
Movies and Shows. We’ve all been there — your daughter is starting to melt down and performance time is still an hour away. This is when I bring out the big guns: YES, YOU CAN WATCH A SHOW! Like I said, I try to make zoning out to a show or movie a last resort. This way, it’s sure to keep her attention when she’s tired or anxious before getting on stage.
What are some of your best boredom busters? Share your tips and tricks with us!