This week is National Screen-Free week, our kids’ favorite week of the year. Ha! We love hearing from our readers about the different ways you manage screen time at home, including some of the tricks you’ve picked up from Cool Mom Tech.
Lots of you have strict rules against screen time during the week, while others are focused more on helping yours kids learn how to self-regulate when it comes to their tech use. One thing we can all agree on though: it can be tough.
A new book by Shannon Philpott-Sanders is here to make it a little easier for you when your kids come in whining that they’re bored and you’re not inclined to put a tablet in their hands. It’s called Screen-Free Fun, and it’s packed with 400 ideas for things to do that don’t involve screens.
Like fresh air. Open-ended play. And yes, slime recipes.
My personal method for using this book is to flip it open, run the pages under my thumb, then randomly point at one activity for my kids to do. That said, you can also check one of the four specific sections (crafts, outdoor play, volunteering, and travel) if you’ve got something particular in mind.
The activities are helpfully labeled by age range, starting around 6 right up to 12. And Shannon has also, kindly, ranked each difficulty level from one to three.
(So you know what you’re getting into before you suggest finger painting with food.)
That said, most of these are easy enough for me to comfortably pick one at random for my kids to do: Play Name that Tune. Paint rock people. Collect books for an after school program. Start a poetry club. Dry and press flowers.
Interestingly, I’ve found that during those times my kids are bingeing on Fortnite or in a YouTube marathon, they have a harder time coming up with creative ideas. I have a feeling this book might not just give us an activity here and there to do — but maybe even help us all reconnect with each other, and with our creative sides.
I’m really excited to see where it takes us.
You can find Screen-Free Fun by Shannon Philpott-Sanders at our affiliate Amazon, or at your local bookstore or library.