What kind of family are you?
Or, this kind?
I have to say, I see many more of the first kind as I go about my day. So many families are plugged into portable game consoles, iPhones, iPads, iTouches, cell phones and other portable devices when out with each other it’s disturbing and truly sad. The picture above was taken at a mall near me. The family was grabbing lunch together, multiple shopping bags in tow. They were seated with their food for all of a minute before everyone at the table pulled out some sort of device. The father had his iPad, kids game devices and mom started talking on her phone, at the table with her family.
That night, I was at dinner with my family when I noticed a family at the next table with all the kids with portable gaming devices.
I was run into a few months back by a child distracted by his gaming device while I was shopping at my local supermarket. His mom didn’t notice because she was on her phone. She just grabbed his elbow and pulled him out of my way. There was a time that parents would have nudged their kids to apologize for such mishaps – not that time.
The second picture is actually my family. My husband and daughter were on one of their weekend runs and I happened to catch them go by as I was on one of my photo walks. We don’t use technology when we’re together as a family – haven’t in a very long time since we realized we had become too entranced by our “i” devices. As parents, we realized we had to set the example and once we did, it was easy for our kids, now teens, to follow.
Next week is the first Screen Free Week of 2011, the second will be on October. It’s a great time to get everyone in your family unplugged and used to some old fashioned together time. Not too long ago, this week used to refer to televisions but these days applies to computers, phones, portable game devices…basically everything we all use in our 24/7 high tech, on the go, always on culture.
With Spring Break next week for many schools and the nice weather finally here, get your family outside and leave anything with screens and plugs inside. Once the week is over, have a family pow-pow and see how you can take away from the week ways to become more unplugged as a family.
Another way to look at it – why use an app to see nature when you can walk out your front door.