Fidgety Kid? Make One of These

One of my sons WILL NOT sit still.

Whether he’s at the dinner table, his desk in our schoolroom or in bed listening to a story, he’s on the go. As a homeschool mom, let me tell you it’s especially hard to teach a kid that doesn’t stop moving. EVER. 

Thank you to my friend and son #1’s occupational therapist for this great idea to get him to sit still for about 15-20 minutes at a time. It starts with a bag of rice. Yes, rice. A 10 lb bag in fact.

If you have a kid like mine, try making a weighted pillow. It’s easy to do and you can crank one out in less than 45 minutes, while simultaneously making a blue box of mac and cheese. Here’s what you need:

  • old pillowcase
  • 1/4 yard fleece in a fun color or pattern
  • coordinating thread
  • scissors
  • 10 pound bag of rice, beans will also work, but rice was cheaper:)

You’ll want to use a sewing machine for this. If you don’t have one, ask someone you know if you could use hers. She (or he) may even make one for you if you ask nicely:)

The basic idea is to cut up an old pillowcase and stuff it with rice. Then you stuff the rice bag into an outer piece of fabric that you’ve stitched up to make it soft to the touch and more durable.

Start by folding an old pillowcase in half lengthwise. Figure out how long you want your pillow to be and cut it to your desired length. I cut about 8 inches off of mine. In the picture below, you’ll only be using the right side.

Next, cut the bigger piece in half, lengthwise, along the fold so you only have to stitch two sides.

You should have two equal pieces. Set one piece aside for another project (or your other fidgety kid)!

Stitch the long side up, taking care to back stitch at the beginning and the end to make it stronger. I actually stitched two lines to make it extra strong to hold the rice.

Note: No, I really don’t have a bad case of the shakes, I just tried out a decorative stitch I’d never used before because this part doesn’t show.

Back to the project. Fill with rice. I left about a pound in the package. You’ll need to leave a few inches of space at the end.

Double stitch the end up the same way, making sure to back stitch at the beginning and end. This is what it should look like:

Essentially, you’ll want to follow the same steps with your fleece to make the outer covering:

  • fold the fleece in half lengthwise
  • lay your inner rice pillow on top of your fleece
  • cut around the rice bag, leaving a 1 1/2-2 inch seam allowance
  • double stitch the long side of the fabric, and back stitch
  • double stitch one of the short sides of the fabric, and back stitch
  • put the rice bag into the fleece pillowcase
  • double stitch the remaining edge, and back stitch

When you’re done, you’ll have one of these…

and one of these…

…a happy kid that can eat his mac and cheese without getting up from the table once, making mom happy, too.

Cost breakdown: 10 lb bag of rice, $7; 1/4 yard of fleece, $2; pillowcase and thread, already owned.

Do you have a fidgety kid as well? Leave me a comment. I’d love to hear what you do.

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Published in: on November 13, 2010 at 9:29 pm  Leave a Comment  
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