“What advice do you think I should give Sprite?” Paula had asked me.
I was glad that Sprite had asked Paula what she should tell Prudence about how to cope with boredom. I was not really sure that this was a topic on which Sprite should be giving advice to her buddy from the lower grade.
“Did you receive any training about how the buddy system works and what advice you are allowed to give?” I asked Sprite.
“Yes, they had training sessions.” said Sprite “But I was away from school when that happened.”
“And how does the buddy system work?”
“Well, as far as I can tell, we have times when we go to the other class and help them do a specific activity. I think the main idea is that the little kids know one of the older ones so that they have someone else to help them fit into school.”
“What are you supposed to do if your little buddy asks you a difficult question you cannot answer or shares something with you that makes you worry?”
“I don’t know! I missed the training days.”
“So what should I tell her to do when she is bored?”
“Well” said Paula “That is not an easy question to answer. People say that they are bored for many different reasons”
“Is she only bored in class or in other situations too?
She could be bored in class because the work is
* too easy
* too repetitive
* not an interesting topic
* the topic is not presented in a creative or humorous way
* not on a topic of interest to her
* too difficult for her so she tunes out
Being bored and finding it difficult to concentrate also have a lot in common.
It could be that she has a short attention span or that there is something in the class environment that makes her tune out, daydream, or become lethargic.
Is the room well ventilated?
How long is it since she ate and drank?
Does the teacher have a monotonous tone of voice?”
“It could even mean that there is something else she would prefer to be doing or that something happening in her personal life is much more important to her now than what is being taught in class.”
“You would need to know why she says she is bored to know what should be done.”