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3 Surprising Outcomes from Our Family Tech Break

How one busy family found balance by ditching technology for a week

In today’s digital age, it’s easy for families to become reliant on technology to keep everyone entertained, informed and connected. But what happens when that reliance starts to take over our lives? Recently, we spoke to one working mom about her family’s decision to take a two-week tech break, and the eye-opening results. This is her story:

Our tech-dependent routine had become all too familiar. Mornings were filled with TV shows or news on the screen, making it a challenge to get out the door on time. Afternoons and weekends were spent with various devices, whether it was for entertainment or distraction. We were spending an excessive amount of time chained to our screens, and it was time for a change.

During our tech break, we made intentional shifts in our daily routines. Instead of turning on the TV in the morning, we opted for music. We discovered new genres and shared our favorite songs, while enjoying breakfast together at the kitchen table. We had more conversation and even the occasional spontaneous song and dance.

After school, instead of reaching for the iPad, we delved into activities like reading Highlights magazines, working on school-supplied workbooks, and playing board games. Weekends became opportunities for family bonding and creative exploration, with breakfast-making sessions, science projects, bike rides, and independent play with toys.

The outcomes of our family tech break were nothing short of remarkable:

  • Quality Family Time: Without the distraction of screens, we found ourselves fully present with each other. Meaningful conversations, shared laughter, and bonding experiences strengthened our family dynamic and created lasting memories.
  • Establishment of New Routines: By reducing screen time, we established healthier morning and evening routines that promoted positive behaviors and attitudes. Mornings became more peaceful, and evenings were spent winding down without the constant stimulation of screens.
  • Play as Education: Perhaps the most unexpected outcome was the discovery of the educational value inherent in play. Through hands-on activities and exploration, we witnessed our son’s curiosity and creativity flourish, reinforcing important academic concepts in a fun and engaging way.

Our family tech break was a valuable experience that taught us the importance of finding balance in our relationship with technology. By taking a step back from screens, we were able to reconnect with each other, establish healthier routines, and rediscover the joy of hands-on learning. As we look to the future, we plan to incorporate the lessons learned from our tech break into our year-round routines, prioritizing educational experiences that foster growth and development.

Heather Gosendi and her husband live in Jacksonville with their 6-year-old son.

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