Dan Pezet

No Screen Day

Usually, Cindy and I do a good job of monitoring our ‘media’ time for ourselves and the boys, but lately we have become a little more lax. It has been so hot, that we have retreated indoors for the heat of the day (which lately has been from sunrise to sunset). Our various forms of electronic media have been a convenient way to keep the boys (and ourselves) occupied. Lately, however, it has been too convenient. We have been spending more and more time in front of our various electronic screens.

Cindy likes to read blogs and loves writing new posts for her blog. The boys jump from watching Tivo, to playing on the computer, to playing one of three different types of Lego games on the Wii (Star Wars, Batman, and Indiana Jones). I am just as guilty, if not more so. I could easily spend the entire day sitting in front of my laptop while sipping on a glass of sweet tea. If left to myself, the only reason I would need to get up would be when it was time to make room for more tea.

Yes, we have definitely let ourselves get carried away with our electronic gadgets. So, Saturday, Cindy and I talked about it and came up with an idea: No Screen Day. We got the boys together first thing in the morning and announced that we were not going to look at anything with a screen for the entire day. While I expected much wailing and gnashing of teeth, the boys took it well. To my surprise, they were up for the challenge. And they liked it. I took Daniel to the hardware store, and we stopped for lunch. Daniel had a ball. Luke did, too. Cindy and I had fun, too. Not only did we survive No Screen Day, but we actually enjoyed it. Daniel even asked if we could have No Screen Day again sometime soon. Maybe people don’t need a computer or a TV or a video game to be happy after all!

Now that No Screen Day is over, we will have to go back to that time-tested rule -> Moderation.


  • Let me explain: I currently have one child on the desktop computer (he’s doing summer school stuff, so I guess it’s valid), one on the DSi (which I swore we would only take out for road trips), one on the ipad, I’m on my laptop, and Regis and Kelly are on the tv that no one is watching! At 5:00, all technology is shut down for the day (unless I have work to do or Mike has to do bills). Being in the mountains for 10 days helped wean us off of the screens. We played lots of card games and went on lots of walks. Here, however, we will melt into a big puddle of human goo if we go for a walk! So, evenings and Sundays = no screens! Isn’t there some Jewish following that doesn’t allow technology after sundown and on holy days?

    • β€œHere, however, we will melt into a big puddle of human goo if we go for a walk!”
      – I can completely relate!

      As for Jewish custom, Orthodox Judaism most strongly restricts what kind of work can be done during the Shabbat. Button pushing is generally not allowed (elevators in Israel stop on every floor on the Sabbath so that people do not have to press buttons). It is my understanding that you could watch TV, but you would not be allowed to turn it on. You also would not be allowed to change the channel. It would be ok, though, for Tivo to change the channel for you.

      Regardless, I think that your No Screen Sundays are a great idea!