Getting Ready for Screen Free Week 2013

Sunday, April 28, 2013

Happy Screen-Free week Eve!  Tomorrow, April 29th is the start of the week long National Screen Free week running through Sunday, May 5th.  We are mostly ready to go over here (although I need to double check my pinterest recipes for meal planning this week before tonight!  eek!)

The Screen Free Week website and the CCFC website (Campaign for a Commerical Free Childhood) both talk about how Screen Free week can help remind families to 'turn off the tv and turn on life.'  And Sarah from Diapers&Daises recently wrote about the importance of unplugging and logging real face time with your kids.  And this blog post about how this family survived Screen week last year was a helpful confidence booster that we would be able to do it a whole week.

We are participating in Screen Free week because we are both aware of how much of our day is spent staring at a screen.  Not just the kids watching tv or movies, playing on the iPad (and streaming Netflix) and playing with our phones...but also (even maybe MORE so) how much time Brandon and I spend time staring at a screen - computer, iphone, iPads, television.  There is a whole lot of mindless scrolling going on and a week long break from it is usually a  nice reminder of how just much of our day it consumes.

We will have a piece of paper over the tv this week that says "Broken.  Will be fixed next Monday"  And we will both only use our computers for work purposes.  The iPad will sit untouched on top of the fridge all week (hopefully out of sight, out of mind).  We will need to use our phones for actual phone calls (since we don't have a house phone) but we're swearing off any phone apps including instagram and pinterest (!!)  No personal email, no blog updates, no pinterest perusing, no facebook, none of that.  At least that's the goal for the upcoming week.

But if we are being honest here...dare I say it:


7 days without having the tv to distract the kids for 20 minutes so I can make dinner?  7 days without checking pinterest or updating my status?  7 days trying to get Grey to take a rest in the afternoon without the iPad?

...double gulp...

Because I realize how insane this is (or at least feels in today's day & age), I made a pretty detailed list of activities to make it through the week.  I designated each day with a theme and I'm planning to have activites ready to go when things head south.  Here is the projected plan:

Screen Free Week 2013 Plan of Attack

Monday:  'Entertainment' Day
Dress up in costumes
Dance Party
Musical Parades
Make sock puppets
Learn and tell jokes

Tuesday:  Art Day
Shaving cream Bath paint
Make Ned the iPhone Monster
Sidewalk chalk
art windows  (using contact paper)

Wednesday:  Cooking Day
Breakfast:  Pancake Bites
Lunch:  Mini Pizzas
Mudpies outside
Dinner:  Meatloaf cupcakes
Dessert:  Haystacks

Thursday:  Book Day
Trip to the library
Read books in funny places (like in the bathtub and in a closet with a flashlight)
Dinnertime Read Aloud

Friday:  'No Electricity' Day
Play Games (Hot potato, puzzles, ThinkFun Zingo)
2p-4p:  Mom's Group Event (my first to host!) at the Quemahoming Dam with crafts & a simplified nature walk
Cook dinner over the fire (hot dogs, baked potatoes, and smores)
Candlelight bedtime

Saturday & Sunday are free play days.
We are planning to take the dogs for a long walk in the woods near my parents' house.  But also letting the kids pick what they want to do.  Boredom can be a good thing to learn (good Lord, do my kids need to learn that!) because it fosters independent thinking and creativity.  Boredom is something my children need more big time.

So there you have it.  Wish us luck!
I will be back next week with a full update on how (if!) we survived and made it all week as a screen free family.  I'd be lying if I didn't say I'm somewhat terrified, but I don't like anything if not a challenge - hah!  Who knows, maybe we'll be so inspired that we might incorporate regular Screen Free days into our routine - like this Momma.

Good luck to any other mommas & families out there participating in Screen Free week!!

If this is the first you are hearing of Screen Free week - or if you can't/don't want to committ to a whole week of Screen Free living, Check out this pinboard with lots of ideas and ways you can incoporate some screen free time this week.


  1. I am inspired! We may try to limit screen time here next week as well! Can't wait to hear how it goes!

  2. sounds like a great plan! I hope you guys have a fabulous week! Thanks for linking to Ned :)