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“Mom, I’m Bored!” 100 Things Teens Can Do When Bored Without Screens

For millennia, young people have been able to pass their days engaged and entertained—without the aid of an electronic screen. And they’ve even enjoyed themselves. So how do you find things for bored teenagers to do at home and on the go? Where do you find things to do without technology? The Your Teen staff has gathered 100 ideas for fun activities that teenagers can do without a phone, PC, videogames, or television. Pssst—they work for adults, too!

What Do When You’re Bored

When you feel bored, it is easy to pick up your phone and scroll for hours. However, many of us feel like we spend too much time a day looking at screens.  One of the best ways to reduce screen time is to replace screen time with entertaining activities. According to Jennifer Casarella, MD , “Boredom is an emotion or signal that lets you know that you are doing something that doesn’t give you satisfaction.” The best thing to do when you’re bored is to find an activity that gives you satisfaction. Our list of things to do when you’re bored includes satisfying activities such as making origami, doing puzzles, and going to the zoo.

100 Things Teenagers Can Do When They’re Bored That Don’t Involve Screens

1. Bake something new from a cookbook

Discover the joy of baking by choosing a new recipe from a cookbook. If you do not have a cookbook, you can simply print a recipe you find online. It’s a fun way to learn new culinary skills and enjoy delicious homemade treats.

2. Find something in your room that you enjoyed when you were younger and try it again

Take a trip down memory lane by finding an item from your childhood and giving it another go. Whether it’s a favorite book, a toy, or a game, it can be surprisingly satisfying to reconnect with your past.

3. Explore local attractions on foot

Think about what’s within a one-mile radius of your home and set out on foot to visit that interesting place. Walking is great exercise and a way to see your neighborhood from a different perspective.

4. Play a board game

Board games are a classic way to engage with friends or family without using screens or technology. They can challenge your strategic thinking and are a perfect group activity for when you’re feeling bored.

5. Color, draw, or paint

Unleash your inner artist by coloring, drawing, or painting. Artistic activities are not only fun but also beneficial for your brain and mental health.

6. Walk a dog

If you have a dog, take them for a walk. If not, offer to walk a neighbor’s dog. They might even pay you to do it! Walking dogs is good exercise and a great way to enjoy the outdoors.

7. Help out someone lonely

Think of someone who might appreciate company or assistance, like an elderly neighbor. Sometimes just a small act of kindness can make a big difference in someone’s day. If you don’t know anybody, you could ask to volunteer at a senior living facility!

8. Call a grandparent

Brighten your grandparent’s day with a phone call. It’s a wonderful way to stay connected and make them feel loved.

9. Do a crossword puzzle, Sudoku, or word search

These puzzles can improve your problem-solving skills and are a productive way to pass time. Puzzles are a great way to be entertained without using screens.

10. Ride a bike, skateboard, or scooter!

around your neighborhood. It’s a liberating activity that can give you a sense of freedom and adventure.

11. Write in a journal

Reflect on your thoughts and feelings by writing in a journal. It’s a personal space to express yourself and document your life. There is something very relaxing about writing by hand.

12. Write fanfic based on your favorite book or movie

Use your creativity to write fanfiction based on your favorite book, show, or movie. You can write the screenplay to a bonus episode or an alternate ending!

13. Shoot hoops

If you have a basketball hoop nearby, go shoot some hoops! It’s a fun way to improve your skills and get some exercise. If your friend is also bored, invite them to play HORSE or 1 on 1!

14. Take a bath

Soak in a warm bath to relax and unwind. Add some bubbles, light some candles, and enjoy the tranquility.

15. Make slime

Join in on the slime-making trend for a hands-on DIY project. It’s a playful and sensory activity that can be both fun and relaxing.

16. Do Origami

Challenge yourself with the art of origami. Creating paper figures can be intricate and rewarding work that sharpens your focus and precision.

17. Visit a friend or invite one over

They might be bored too, and it is nice to have time face-to-face. In-person socializing is a valuable way to strengthen relationships and enjoy shared activities.

18. Play darts, ping pong, or air hockey

These are great games to play indoors. A lot of people have these games in their basement or garage, and they are a great cure for boredom.

19. Have a Nerf gun war

Find some friends and organize a Nerf gun battle for some exhilarating fun. It’s a great way to engage in playful competition with friends or family.

20. Try to figure out how to fix something broken in your home

Turn boredom into productivity by fixing something broken at home. We all have something we know is broken in our house. The feeling you get once it is no longer broken is amazing.

21. Reading a book

Find a book in your house that you haven’t read and get lost in its pages. Reading is a great way to escape reality and learn something new. Best of all, no screens necessary!

22. Cuddle with or play with a pet or teach them a new trick

Spend quality time with your pet. Teach them new tricks or simply enjoy their company. It’s a rewarding way to strengthen your bond. Make sure to give them some treats as well!

23. Play with siblings

Engage in fun activities with your siblings. It could be playing games, sports, or just messing around. It’s a good chance to connect and make memories.

24. Go for a run or walk

Exercise with a run or a brisk walk to clear your mind and boost your endorphins. Regular exercise is important for both physical and mental health.

25. Paint your nails

Experiment with painting your nails. It’s a form of self-expression and personal grooming that can boost your mood. Not only will it stop you from being bored, but you’ll end up with beautiful nails!

26. Go to the park

Visit a local park to relax. Parks offer a variety of recreational opportunities and fresh air.

27. Go sledding or have a snowball fight

If it’s snowy, go enjoy some winter activities like sledding or building a snowman! These winter activities are exhilarating and a great way to enjoy the season.

28. Look for a job

Consider looking for a job opportunity, even a simple one like babysitting or dog walking. You can go around the neighborhood and see if any neighbors need some help. It’s a constructive way to use your time and earn some money.

29. Try gardening

Start or tend to a garden. Gardening can be a peaceful and productive hobby that gets you outside and in touch with nature.

30. Brainstorm business ideas

Use your free time to brainstorm business ideas. It’s a proactive way to plan for the future and could lead to exciting opportunities.

31. Take a nap

If you’re feeling truly bored and lethargic, a nap can be a refreshing way to recharge your energy levels.

32. Do volunteer work

Find a volunteer position. Volunteering can be fulfilling and beneficial to both you and the community.

33. Create your own game

Design an obstacle course or scavenger hunt. It’s a creative and active way to have fun alone or with others.

34. Do a jigsaw puzzle

Chances are, you have an old puzzle on a shelf at home. It can be a meditative and satisfying way to spend your time, with a tangible reward at the end.

35. Ask if there are extra chores you can do for cash

If you’re bored, why not do extra work to make some cash? It’s a win-win for you and your household.

36. Knit, crochet, or rainbow loom

Take up knitting, crocheting, or use a rainbow loom. These crafts are relaxing and productive, with a cozy result.

37. Think of one adulting thing you don’t know how to do, and find out how to do it

Identify an “adulting” skill you don’t know yet, like budgeting or cooking, and take steps to learn it. This will prepare you for independent living. Ask an adult to help you out!

38. Practice or learn an instrument

Use your free time to practice an existing musical instrument or start learning a new one. Music can be a deeply rewarding skill to cultivate.

39. Go bird watching with binoculars

Try to identify the different types of birds in your neighborhood. Birdwatching is a peaceful activity that connects you with nature.

40. See if you can set a record at something

Challenge yourself to set a personal record in an activity you enjoy. Even if you don’t beat the record, it can still be very fun to try!

41. Find or create a geocache

Get involved in geocaching to combine outdoor adventure with a treasure-hunt aspect. It’s a modern exploration with a twist of technology (yes, we know there is minor screen involvement)

42. Plan one dinner you’d like to try making

Plan and cook a meal you’ve always wanted to try. It’s a rewarding process that ends with a delicious outcome.

43. Paint a room

Consider painting a room in your house. A fresh coat of paint can transform a space and give you a satisfying project to complete.

44. Take your mom’s grocery list and buy everything

Take on the task of fulfilling your mom’s grocery list. It’s a helpful way to learn about budgeting and meal planning.

45. Make a pro and con list of using technology

Formulate an argument to persuade your parents to allow more tech time. It’s good practice for research and persuasive speech.

46. Make a bucket list

Draft a bucket list of things you want to do in your lifetime. It’s an inspiring activity that can motivate you to set goals and dream big.

47. Bake cookies and give them to the local fire department

Bake cookies and deliver them to your local fire department as a thank-you gesture. It’s a sweet way to show appreciation for community services.

48. Visit the Humane Society to play with the animals

Spend time at the Humane Society playing with animals waiting for homes. It’s a compassionate way to give back and enjoy pet companionship.

49. Go to the zoo

Visit the zoo to learn about animals and their habitats. It’s educational and a chance to see wildlife up close.

50. Put together a neighborhood football game

Get the neighborhood kids together for a game of touch football. It’s a fun way to stay active and interact with others.

51. Go through your drawers and make a pile of clothes that you want to donate

Find what clothes no longer fit you well and donate them locally. This activity is a practical way to declutter and help others in need.

52. Serve a meal at a soup kitchen

Your local soup kitchen is likely always looking for more volunteers. This is a great way to use your time and make an impact. Volunteering is an enriching experience that helps you give back to the community and gain perspective.

53. Write a short story

Writing a short story is a fantastic way to use your imagination and possibly discover a hidden talent for writing.

54. Toothpick construction

Build something using toothpicks. It’s a test of patience and dexterity, and you can create intricate structures.

55. Build something with toothpicks

Construct houses with playing cards. It requires a steady hand and concentration, and it’s quite satisfying to see how high you can build.

56. Build houses with playing cards

Have you ever actually tried to build a house of cards? It’s difficult, but all you need is a deck of cards!

57. Learn how to do an updo

Learn how to do a different hairstyle. It’s a useful skill for special occasions and can be a fun way to experiment with your look.

58. Practice yoga

Practice yoga to improve flexibility, strength, and peace of mind. Yoga is a holistic activity that benefits both body and spirit.

59. Try to stand on your head or do a cartwheel

It’s a playful way to improve balance and core strength. Be careful not to injure yourself! See if you have mats or soft surfaces around.

60. Tour the house looking at all the things on the walls and tables like you’re at a museum

This can give you a new perspective on what you see every day. You can even pretend you’re giving a tour to a group of museum-goers.

61. Teach yourself cursive/calligraphy

Teaching yourself cursive or calligraphy is a great use of time. It’s an artistic skill that beautifies your handwriting and can be used for special notes and invitations.

62. Make a scrapbook of your last year’s adventures

Create a scrapbook with things you have at home. You’ll end up with a wonderful creation full of memories that you can look back on.

63. Whistle with fingers

Learn to whistle with your fingers. This can be a very useful skill. You never know when you’ll need a loud whistle!

64. Go to the library

What was the last time you went to the library? Go to discover new books, use their resources, or enjoy a quiet reading space. Libraries offer a wealth of knowledge and a peaceful environment.

65. If it’s snowy, build a snowman or snow fort

This is a great way to have some fun outside during the winter. Moving snow is a great exercise too!

66. Clean your room and argue for an allowance

Clean your room thoroughly and maybe even negotiate for an allowance increase. It’s a productive way to improve your living space and learn about financial negotiation.

67. Play croquet

Play a game of croquet in your backyard or at a local park. Croquet sets are pretty easy to find

68. Get a book out about trees and learn to Identify them

Do you know what all of the trees in your neighborhood are? Use a book to learn how to identify different trees.

69. Go for a hike

Go for a hike and enjoy the beauty of nature. Hiking is great for fitness, exploration, and relaxation.

70. Be a tourist in your own city

Explore landmarks, museums, and other attractions you might usually overlook.

71. Walk around a local cemetery and read the headstones

Walking in a cemetery can be a very relaxing activity. Cemeteries are usually very quite, so it is a great time to reflect and calm down from chaotic day-to-day activities

72. Practice your free throw

Improve your basketball skills with a better free throw. This is a great activity because you can do it all by yourself

73. Give yourself a facial mask

Have a home spa day. Home spa treatments can be a relaxing and beautifying experience.

74. Learn how to juggle

Juggling can be very intimidating to learn. However, once you get the hang of it, it becomes an awesome hobby and party trick!

75. Design a family crest

Design a family crest. This project can be both artistic and meaningful as you consider what symbols represent your family.

76. Look through family photo albums

Do your parents have old photo albums? Open them up to see baby pictures of you and your siblings!

77. Make a photo collage for your room

Photo collages are a great celebration of your favorite memories and can add a personal touch to your space.

78. Play with sidewalk chalk

Get creative with sidewalk chalk. Drawing on the pavement is a fun, ephemeral way to express yourself artistically.

79. Alphabetize the spices in your kitchen

Do you have a hard time finding spices? This way, you’ll always know where they are!

80. Organize your shoes

Organize your shoes. It’s a practical and satisfying way to keep your wardrobe in check and make your mornings smoother.

81. Learn how to make a perfect cat eye with eyeliner

Practice your makeup skills! Makeup experimentation is a form of self-expression and can enhance your skills.

82. Make homemade ice cream

Make homemade ice cream. It’s a delightful treat that can be customized with your favorite flavors and toppings.

83. String lights across the ceiling in your room

Decorative lighting in your bedroom ceiling for a cozy and whimsical touch. It can transform the ambiance of your room and create a relaxing environment.

84. Create a signature

You’ll have to sign a lot of documents as you get older, so it is nice to play around with signatures while you’re young!

85. Make a friendship bracelet

Friendship bracelet making is a thoughtful gift and a fun way to show someone you care.

86. Become an expert in some obscure trivia

This way you can dominate the topic if it ever comes up in trivia night!

87. Drive around town to explore

Drive or bike around your town. You might find hidden gems or rediscover favorite spots.

88. Ask your grandparents about their childhood

These conversations can be precious and enlightening. You’ll probably learn something new about them!

89. Play Frisbee or Catch

If you and your friend are bored, try paying catch!  All you need is a ball or frisbee and you’ll both be entertained!

90. Ask your parents about their first date.

Asking your parents about their first date is a delightful way to connect with them and learn about your family history. This activity strengthens family bonds and offers a glimpse into a time before technology dominated social interactions.

91. Ask someone on a date and plan it.

Asking someone on a date and planning it encourages creativity and personal interaction that is often lost in digital communication. It’s a thoughtful way to show care and attention, fostering meaningful connections that are best nurtured in person.

92. Learn how to do henna designs.

Learning how to do henna designs is an artistic endeavor that encourages patience and attention to detail. It’s a creative outlet that also celebrates cultural traditions, offering a unique way to express oneself without the need for digital devices.

93. Read a magazine or newspaper you have never read before.

Reading a magazine or newspaper you have never read before expands your knowledge and exposes you to different perspectives. It’s an informative break from screen time that can also improve your reading skills and critical thinking.

94. Dream about where you’d like to be in five, 10, or even 20 years.

Dreaming about the future is a powerful exercise in setting goals and aspirations without the distraction of screens. It allows you to focus on your ambitions and plan steps towards achieving them, which is essential for personal development.

95. Do an extra chore and surprise your parents.

Doing an extra chore to surprise your parents shows initiative and kindness, contributing positively to household dynamics. This screen-free activity not only provides a sense of accomplishment but also gratitude from those you’ve helped.

96. Go to a trampoline park, rock climbing gym

If you have a bit of cash saved up, you can buy a ticket to go to a trampoline park or rock climbing gym. These are great ways to be active and avoid boredom!

97. Bike to the local pool.

Biking to the town pool is not only great exercise but also an environmentally friendly activity. The nice part is that you can reward the long bike ride with a refreshing dip into the pool.

98. Hang out in a coffee shop to do homework or talk with friends.

Spending time in a coffee shop to study or converse with friends is a cozy alternative to screen-based chatting. It provides a warm atmosphere for productivity and socializing, fostering a sense of community and real-life connection.

99. Visit a local museum

Spend an afternoon at your local art museum! It might even be free in your city! This is a great way to admire art and get inspired.

100. Shadow your parents at work.

If their company allows it, shadowing your parents at work can be a wonderful learning opportunity. It’ll give you great insights into their day-to-day lives.

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