Catholic Husband

Love, Lead, Serve

Zero Screens

TV in a living room

I have an ambitious goal. In many ways, it may appear opposed to who I am as a person. I consider myself to be well versed in technology. I stay up to date on the latest news, and many of my RSS subscriptions (see what I mean?) are of tech blogs.

Goal: zero minutes of screen time per week for my kids.

Technology is great, but there are a lot of pitfalls, especially for children. Alison and I have a set of ideals and values that we want for our children to learn. I know that my children have tremendous capacity for creativity, which they demonstrate in small ways each day. The problem is that content creators and app developers are sneaking in the front door, and that gives them the opportunity to tell my kids things that I’d rather they not learn.

I have to admit, the onus for this change is on me. When I have a lot to do and need a burst of time to get things done, turning on the television is easy. Benedict loves calling people on his iPad, and even enjoying using the Bible app that’s installed.

For me, it comes down to opportunity cost. What could he be doing that’s expanding his horizons and broadening his mind instead of being closed off, focused on a screen? How could we deepen our relationship if we spent every minute working and playing, instead of periods of time apart?

It’s a big goal, a huge goal, and one that I think is worth pursuing. I’m going to take it one step at a time, and though it will be a challenge, I know the payoff will be worth the effort.
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