My daughter graduated from 5th grade, and will be attending a new school next year. My son made it to 7th grade, by the skin of his math grade- but he made it. Both my babies will be attending the same school once more, though I doubt they would ever actually see each other next school year.
I let them get away with the plaints for the entire weekend. But this morning, I just smiled at them, oh-so-lovingly. They knew something was up, but had no idea what. My son was more savvy than my daughter, because I overheard them talking.
Daughter: "She must have something awesome planned- Mom's smiling a lot!"
Son: "Don't count on it- Mom smiles when she's giving us work to do."
Daughter: "Why would she do that?"
Son: "Because she likes to build character by making us miserable and sweat to death."
I gathered my children together after breakfast, then handed them each a check-off list. Then I told them my plan. "To assuage any boredom this summer, I'll be teaching you some new life skills."
My children groaned. I heard my son mutter, 'I told you so."
Undaunted, I proceeded to explain the list, which was pretty extensive. They would be sharing chores that their sibling was in charge of before every other week, therefore, learning a lot more skills by the end of the summer- some were new to them, but more were not. The emotions were mixed.
My son was happy that he wasn't going to be doing laundry forever, and my daughter wasn't going to be doing the dishwasher until she died. However, my son hated folding clothes (new chore) and my daughter really didn't like taking out the trash. Tough Noogies, kiddos- you were the ones that were bored!
I used to have one child in charge of washing the table in the morning, and the other in the evening. this became troublesome because both kids would bicker because someone wasn't doing his or her job, and they had to clean up a big mess that the other left. I fixed that by scheduling one child for clearing one week, and washing it off the next. List One was one set of chores, and List Two has a second set. This week my daughter has List One, and my son has List Two. Next week they switch.
Never, ever tell Mom you're bored- especially this mom!
As we speak, they just finished their lists and are now collapsed on the couch- one is reading, the other is watching a movie. Neither child has told me how bored he/she is.
Silence is indeed, golden.