Electronic Fast, One Year Later

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Exactly one year ago, I turned off all the screens in the home for three weeks. Dr. Victoria Dunckley wrote “Reset Your Child’s Brain” for parents whose children exhibit symptoms of Electronic Screen Syndrome (ESS).

These symptoms range from ADHD, ADD, OCD, to emotional meltdowns, to anxiety and depression, to sleep disruptions, to hating math (after loving it in younger elementary age) etc. The book details exactly what to do for the three weeks of the fast and the preceding week, when you prepare for it. It also informs you what to expect week by week.

Teen cubing on the floor

Our son cubing while waiting for orchestra practice

My son did not like it one bit, but it changed his life. Ten days into it, he started cleaning his room (which the book predicted). By the end of the fast, he had learned how to solve Rubik’s cube in less than a minute. One month later, he asked our pastor for Bible studies so that he may prepare for baptism. Continue reading »

21-day Electronic Fast

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We are in the middle of a 21-day fast from screens. Inspired by “Reset Your Child’s Brain,” the book by Dr. Victoria Dunckley, and spurned on by some of the attitudes of our children, my husband and I put a stop to screens in our home for the past 10 days. We are smack in the middle of this screen-free time.

The book will tell you everything you need to do:

  • how to prepare for it (one week or a long weekend during which you read most of the book, print out a monthly calendar and mark activities on it, and order books, toys, activities, supplies for offline living),
  • how to announce it to your children (don’t get into arguments),
  • how to meet their objections (sweetly),
  • how to frame it (experiment, not punishment),
  • how to actually do it (clean sweep of laptops, tablets, cell phones, old equipment forgotten under the bed, Kindles – everything with a screen must be put away),
  • how to inform your children’s friends and other caregivers,
  • how to keep your own sanity through the process etc.

Continue reading »