Saturday, March 31, 2012

Screen-Free Week 2012

Screen-Free Week is April 30 - May 6 this year. I'm seriously considering doing it. Normally, we don't participate in Screen-Free Week, because I generally don't feel that we need to. When the kids are getting a bit too dependent on tv & computer, I limit their screen time more or take it away for a few days. That generally does the trick, and they get back to doing other stuff and not begging to watch tv or use the computer. They don't often get too obnoxious about screen time anyway, as they enjoy playing board games, card games, playing outside, riding bikes, reading, etc. However, occasionally, the screen becomes a problem.

I don't know why it is a problem right now, but it is. Jay has spent all day asking to watch tv & play games on my Nook. He is even putting up a fight about doing his required hour of free reading, which he usually does without question & generally spends more than an hour. The kids haven't really been outside today. I sent them out to play, but they claimed it was too cold & came right back inside. I don't know if he's just being irritating because my niece is over for the weekend & I'm not allowing him to hog her attention, since she is here for Dea's b-day. He is feeling a bit left out, even though I have made sure that they spend some time playing with him. They are teenage girls, though, and he is an eight year old boy. They don't want to spend the whole weekend playing with him. They want girl time - to paint their nails & talk about boys, movies, books, music, etc. So, maybe it's just because of feeling left out, but he's really annoying me with his whiny behavior, refusal to read, and constant asking to use a screen.

Then, when I mentioned that I was considering actually doing Screen-Free Week this year, he nearly fell apart and Dea asked if we could reschedule it until later in the year. Plus, my husband has been using his computer quite a lot in the evenings. I seem to be the only one who is getting bored with screens. I'm getting restless and wanting to do something else. However, I'm not going to be outside playing catch, doing chores around the house, going for hikes, etc. alone, while the rest of my family sit on their butts watching tv or playing on Facebook. So, I think maybe we will participate this year. Either that or I'm just going to put stricter limits on screens for the kids and up their daily outside time, since the weather is warming up. They all enjoy doing screen-free things.  Apparently, I need to remind them of that.