It’s National Screen Free Week, April 30-May 6, 2012. In today’s screen-enhanced, screen-saturated world, it seems almost impossible, doesn’t it? But there are so many benefits to being screen free.
As a family, we monitor screen time pretty well; however, I know we could do better. So, to show our support of this campaign, we are going to implement screen-free week as we see it most feasible. What does that mean to our house?
Since I work from home on the computer, being totally screen-free isn’t feasible. I don’t want to lose my clients; however, I do spent time with friends on Facebook and Twitter as well as surfing. This week I will only use the computer for work purposes. No extra social media or surfing. I only watch one television show each week faithfully. That means I’ll be cutting that out this week as well.
Daddy is taking college coursework presently and has demands for his school on the computer when he is home. Obviously, his professor’s aren’t likely to excuse him from class for screen-free week so he will continue using the computer for his work but no extra social media and surfing. And no additional television in the evenings.
The kids do a little school related work on the computer and occasionally we watch educational programming during the day. Other than computer and television directly related to this week’s lessons, we will be cutting out any additional screen time. That means no Disney Channel treats at the end of the day.
Why Screen Free?
Studies show that too much television can lead to poor school performance, attentive deficit issues, weight problems, and poor dietary habits. Though I do not see these issues as prevalent in our family, that does not mean that they aren’t leading us down that path.
Reducing screen time can encourage family closeness, physical activity, hobby development, and the encouragement of more communication. We may not even realize all the benefits less screen time can bring.
So what can you do instead of watch television, surf the Internet, or play video games? The options are limitless. As we always sit down for a family dinner, this will not change but I’m hopeful that it will get us spending a little more family time in the evening. I was hoping it would mean we would be spending more time outdoors but the weather does not appear to be wanting to cooperate so we will see.
You can log on to the Screen Free Week website for a toolkit that will give you and your family ideas of how to spend your screen free times. I’m simply hopeful that we’ll throw in some more reading times and game playing. More after dinner walks and relaxing on the porch (weather permitting).
Are you planning your Screen Free Week? What are your plans?