Friday, 17 May 2013

screen free for 5 days, and counting

No iPad
No computer
No Nintendo DS
No whatever else has a screen

That's what my kids have done without for 5 days now.

I expected tears and drama from our 10 year old son, who latest love in Minecraft.  But no!

From my daughter, aged 4, her afternoon movie watching has disappeared (this is also when she usually ends up having a 45 minute nap), so keeping her going on activities and being stimulated has taken some extra work.  She's spent more than a few minutes wandering around a little lost.  But she's getting there.

Screens weren't taken away as a punishment but to get them back to thinking about what they wanted to do, not taking the easty option. Playing, building, drawing, reading, writing (my son has started writing his own mini-books!), building a tent in the garden, playing board games. We threw in an extra playdate, an extra swim, and a park visit.

But both have overall done great, especially my son.

Bedtime routine has become easier.  They are more settled.  My son is less grumpy and actually responds when you say his name the first time (not the 10th!).  Even his best friend from down the street has joined him in the min-book writing activity and neither has asked to play a computer game, not even once.  The only time my son has mentioned its been hard for him without playing his favourite computer game, is when I've told him how well he's down getting on with things.

I haven't resorted to opening wine at a ridiculously early hour of the evening afternoon!

It's not going to be an ongoing thing.  We aren't going 'screenless'.  However, the Huzz and I are thinking of making one week a month, or maybe 3 days a week screenless time.  With the summer warm weather on its way, more outside time will definitely make the option easier.

Let's see how things are when screen time is given back this weekend!  Will the grumpy boy return, will I need to ask the same questions ten times over?  Let's see.

UPDATE - Screens have resumed!  Horrible!  Discussions on how long, when, where etc have all arisen again.  Last week felt such a 'lighter' more relaxed week in the house.  Less raised voices, grumpy faces and discussions.  We are without a doubt implementing a 3 days a week without screen policy here. 


  1. That's such a good idea....I am going to implement this too, I need to think up a plan.

    Like you say, it wouldn't be as a punishment but more as a way of making them seek out other options. I do it for an afternoon here & there, but a week is a good idea....with half-term coming up especially.

    My son would find it much harder than my daughter....boys eh!!

    Happy Week-end :)

  2. That's awesome. We limit it a lot and definitely have screen-free days during the week. The summer is always easiest, when they can play outside for hours on end. Last summer we made it six weeks! Great for you for giving it a go and reminding them that they can make their own fun.


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