Unplugging for a week: Crazy or possible?!
How many of you have had that day, weekend or week when you ask yourself “what else can the kids do?” Not only for their sanity but for yours too!
We all want the same things for our kids: to stay as active as possible, to eat as healthy as possible, and to keep their brains as alive as possible. Sure we all love to sit and watch a favorite TV show or movie, and there’s nothing wrong with that. It’s those days of multiple hours of TV watching or being on an electronic device that we should be concerned about. Yes I know at times having some of those devices have saved the day, but can we spend our time more wisely?
The week of May 4 – 10 is National Screen Free Week. I challenge you, and myself, to keep the family from turning on any electronics during that week. That includes everything from the TV and tablets, the phones and portable DVD players, to computers and game systems. Can you be electronic free for a week? Remember, there used to be a time without all these electronics. Call me crazy, but I think it’s possible and you’ll find out just how much fun you can have with your family and create lasting memories too!
So what else can the kids do both by themselves and with you? Below is a list of 50 things that you can choose to do instead of turning on the TV or any other electronics.
- Create a fort with chairs and blankets
- Read a book together
- Play charades
- Go for a walk as a family
- Create a story with each person saying a line
- Sing some songs
- Dance around the room/house
- Tell the kids silly stories of you as a child
- Get the cards out and play a game
- Plant a garden
- Get in the kitchen and bake something – all ages can help do something!
- Catch lightning bugs (or Fireflies as you may call them)
- Build a castle with LEGOSs
- Teach your kids how to play solitaire with a deck of cards
- Write a poem
- Paint a picture of what you see outside your front window
- Go to the park
- Draw a picture of the family pet(s)
- Build a tower out of marshmallows and toothpicks
- Paint each other’s nails
- Take a bike ride as a family
- Run or walk a local race together
- Write a letter and send it to a family member
- Go rock climbing
- Head to a waterpark (indoor if it’s chilly out)
- Team up to clean/organize a part of the house
- Learn to play Sudoku
- Go roller skating
- Have siblings race to make their beds and clean up their toys
- Play a sport such as soccer or football
- Play Tic-Tac-Toe with chalk on the driveway
- Run through the sprinklers
- Find a local library
- Go visit a relative/friend
- Take time to play with your pet(s)
- Teach your child how to sew
- Get on the floor and play with dolls/cars/etc.
- Go outside and see who can find the coolest bug
- Make a stepping stone for the walkway
- Visit the animals at the zoo
- Put together a puzzle
- Create a construction paper chain that you can hang in the house
- Help a neighbor with a chore
- Spring clean the house – many hands make light work!
- Watch your kids perform a play
- Create a family tree
- Watch the clouds go by and see what shapes you can find
- Go through old family photos (remember the kind we used to have developed!)
- Make door hangers for each child’s room
- Look for 4-leaf clovers in the yard
Good luck and have fun unplugging!
Learn more about National Screen-Free Week here.