How to go tv-free? - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 9 Old 11-16-2010, 09:27 AM - Thread Starter
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Is it easier to just go cold turkey, or should we wean ourselves slowly off? We're mostly tv-free, but would like to get rid of that pesky daily show the kid's like to watch when everyone is tuckered out of the end of the day. Can anyone recommend some good going tv-free activity books, both for me and the kiddo's?



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#2 of 9 Old 11-18-2010, 04:11 PM
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I'm interested in this too. I don't have any answers... but we're going cold turkey. Cable is being switched off tomorrow. We do have netflix, so if they're sick, or rainy days we have some back up, but I'm attempting to make it more difficult for myself to put it on. I'm bad about using it to get the dishes done or some laundry folded. I want to make it hard to give in to temptation. 

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#3 of 9 Old 11-18-2010, 04:37 PM
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I just up and canceled the Satellite one day. It was easy enough.


DD has school, i have work and school, we have two dogs, and ponies, so that keeps us plenty busy.

When we are in the house we craft, read, talk to each other, play board games, play on the computer, we watch Amazing race on the computer, so I guess technically we still watch Tv., We clean, we fold laundry, we bake. She plays with the neighbourhood kids, while I secretly eat chocolate behind my novel.....

 It is amazing how much there is to do in life. Although sometimes we do nothing at all when we get the chance. We just drape ourselves over the furniture and chill.

Decluttering 500/2010
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#4 of 9 Old 11-20-2010, 08:50 AM
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We went cold turkey. It will be 3 yrs on the Nov. 30th. That was the last day for the cable. I just started doing things different. I can't believe it has been that long.

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#5 of 9 Old 03-25-2011, 03:35 PM
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Originally Posted by Mittsy View Post


Can anyone recommend some good going tv-free activity books, both for me and the kiddo's?



I am assuming you meant activity or books.  Before bed during that down time we do candle time.  We turn off all lights, radio etc and light the candles.  No matter what you choose to do at that point, talk, read, create it just seems to help everyone relax during that tough time at night.


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#6 of 9 Old 04-07-2011, 08:58 AM
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our kids have always been tv free so I didn't have to handle a transition. But my thought is that when I am trying to shift the patterns sometimes I try a new routine. So if the early evening is tough on you all, maybe shift dinner earlier, or have the kids take  a bath together while you cook (if they are old enough and there is a bath close enough for you to intermittently monitor them), or otherwise change things up enough that they don't have a grouchy hole in the evening where they are like, "time for tv!" and you are losing your mind as well... (my problem is that I am often tired at the end of the day too, so not as patient or resourceful as at other times). 


Maybe for the first week or two try to have dinner prepped/planned earlier in the day? So you can whip it out quickly and finish that part of the evening, have more leisurely bedtime, with extra reading, or a special quiet, focused activity together




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#7 of 9 Old 04-11-2011, 09:00 PM
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I actually got rid of the cable box today, I was tv free for awhile, but got sucked back in :/ Then started to realize everything I watch is viewable online, so I wait til the bean is in bed to catch up. As for now, i'm going cold turkey and slowly weaning my babe, which is a little harder, but I know we'll get there, especially since i'm going to begin homeschooling shortly.

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#8 of 9 Old 04-14-2011, 09:48 AM
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CCFC's 2011 Screen Free Week is coming up - April 18-24. It is a one week focus but it may offer helpful ideas and support to everyone trying to go tv free. They will be sending out tips and suggestions for screenfree activities to those who sign up for their emails. Here's the info:





Presented by
The Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood
Reclaiming Childhood from Corporate Marketers

“A wonderful resource--for organizing a Screen-Free Week or as a year-round educational guide.”  
Rethinking Schools Magazine

Less than two weeks until Screen-Free Week!  In the coming days, we’ll be sending a series of short pieces highlighting the importance of Screen-Free Week to children and families, tips for preparing, and suggestions for screen-free activities. If you would prefer not to receive Screen-Free Week emails but want to continue to receive CCFC action alerts and news, please reply to this email with No SFW email in the subject line.  (You can always unsubscribe from all CCFC emails by clicking the link at the bottom of the page)

If you haven’t ordered your Screen-Free Week Organizer Kits, posters, or t-shirts, there’s still time.  Electronic copies of the kit  will be emailed the same business day.  Printed copies of the kit and other materials will be sent priority mail by the next business day.  Click here to order today!

Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Screen-Free Week . . . And Weren’t Afraid to Ask (adapted from the 2011 Organizer Kit)

Q: Why turn off all the screens completely?  Can we do it for just one day?
A. Turning off the screens for seven full days helps participants realize that life without screen-time is not impossible and may actually be more fun.  A week-long turnoff allows sufficient time to develop habits likely to be more productive and rewarding. A one-day turnoff is easier—but doesn’t give people enough of a break from the noise to reassess the power of screens in their lives.

Q:  Are all screens bad?  What about PBS? 
A. One purpose of Screen-Free Week is to leave behind judgments about the quality of programming and focus instead on creating, discovering, building, participating and doing. Regardless of the quality of media, there is no denying that, for most children today, time spent with screens overwhelms all other leisure activities—and that too much screen time is harmful. Use Screen-Free Week as a catalyst for enjoying the world.  

Q:  Are you Luddites? 
A. Are you kidding?  Not at all.  We deeply appreciate the value of screen technology for work, entertainment, education—and organizing.  In fact, CCFC’s work is made possible by our online network and activities.  But we know that screens are way too prevalent in all of our lives, that screen time is habituating, and that excessive screen time is harmful, particularly for children.  Childhood obesity, poor school performance and attention problems are all linked to too much screen time.  Cutting out screen time for a week is a way of beginning to help wean children (and ourselves) off dependence on screens for stimulation and soothing.  It’s also a way to provide opportunities for engaging in the pleasures of the real world.  

Q: Do I need to turn off even my cell phone?  What about my work computer?
A: We’re absolutely not asking you to stop using your computer for work, or to stop talking on your phone. The goal of Screen-Free Week is to refrain from using screens for entertainment in order to enjoy the rest of the world.  Screens are so interwoven in the fabric of our lives that sorting out what’s entertainment and what’s work or communication may be difficult.  In fact, figuring out the role of screens in our lives is an important component of SFW.  But if talking, texting, or checking your work email is interfering with screen-free family time (including meals), then you may want to think carefully about how you’re using them.

Q:  I need some peace and quiet when I come home.  How do I occupy the kids while I fix dinner or do things around the house?  
A. Have the children help with simple tasks or ask them to talk or read to you while you prepare dinner. Have art materials available in the kitchen so the kids can have your company while you’re cooking.  Developing a few regular pre-dinner activities for children is a worthwhile investment. Some parents find that playing with kids for a few minutes helps relax the kids as well as themselves. Brainstorm with other parents about what they do.  

Q:  Our neighborhood is unsafe.  Isn’t it better that my kids sit in front of the screen at home rather than risk harm outside?
A.  It’s tragic that all children do not have access to safe outdoor play areas.  We should all be working to change that.  Try joining with neighbors or a local community center to develop safe  outdoor activities for participating families.  Meanwhile, there are lots of indoor activities that are fun, productive and screen-free. You can read, play board games, bake, do art projects and more.  We’ll be sending more tips for going screen-free in the coming days. | Store | Find a Screen-Free Week Event | 
SFW on Facebook | Follow us on Twitter | Contact Donate | Unsubscribe
Screen-Free Week, c/o CCFC
NonProfit Center
89 South St., #403
Boston, MA 02111


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#9 of 9 Old 08-22-2011, 02:54 AM
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Maybe you can divert their attention to other stuff? Like I play mobile apps with my brother - like Picturizr or the new one from the Cowboys vs Aliens movie (its for kids and its a coloring/design book sort of on the iPad).

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