I hope yesterday’s post gave you some good food for thought around your family’s screen time and steps you can take to get more in charge of it!
Here is the second part of my list:
- Do real work in the presence of your children. Real work is this: washing dishes, sweeping the kitchen, folding laundry, making soup, etc. Seeing us do actual, physical work – with results they can see – inspires our children to do their work (play!).
- Bring back car games! Don’t turn on that DVD player while driving. Staring out the window is a great time for that essential part of childhood – daydreaming. Or being bored. Or finding all the letters of the alphabet on license plates.
- Cultivate the endangered skill of “Wondering in the Age of Google.” Immediate answers to every question “cheapens” the beauty and pace of wondering. Sit with the question for awhile, and then pull out the reference books (see #4 here).
- Strengthen your Parental Resolve. You are the benevolent King or Queen of your family; feel that energy, and be clear about the screen time boundaries. (If you want support in embodying the role of the warm, firm and calm leader of your family, this is one of the many things we work on in Simplicity Parenting parent groups.)
- Create mealtime rituals. Remember that meals are sacred family time; create rituals that you all look forward to, so the fact that screens are off-limits at the table isn’t even noticed. One of my favorites? Everyone tells the rose (best part), thorn (hardest part) and bud (what they’re looking forward to tomorrow) for that day.
Which of these do you do in your home? Which would you like to work on?
Lisa Weiner is a nurse practitioner and parenting counselor. She received a BA from Tufts University in 1993 and a Masters of Science in Nursing from The Institute of Health Professions at Massachusetts General Hospital in 2000. She is a Certified Simplicity Parenting counselor.
Most importantly, she is the mama of two wonderful boys (ages 8 and 11).
Lisa lives in Portland, Oregon with her husband, sons and dog. She teaches parenting classes on a wide variety of topics, leads workshops at schools and conferences and works individually with parents.
You can read more from Lisa or join her for courses at her website, Handmade Parenting.
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