Over the weekend America celebrated the "National Day of Unplugging" - a day that gets people to take a digital detox by switching off for 24 hours.
Why I unplug...
Those who participated were encouraged to take to social media (prior to switching off, of course) to share their reasons for unplugging. Some said it was to let loose, others wanted more time to exercise, others hoped it would help them sleep better. However, it seems the most popular reason people want less tech time in their days is to allow them to spend more quality time with their family.
Put it to bed
While the idea of "National Day of Unplugging" is good in itself, there was one initative that really caught our attention: the screen sleeping bag.
Yes, it's essentially just a bag that you can put your phone in when it - not you - needs to go to sleep. It sounds simple, but the with a bit of added creativity it could go a long way in establishing healthy screentime habits for your kids.
A designated place for screens to sleep gives parents a tangible way of explaining to kids that once the phone, iPad or laptop goes to bed for the night, it's not "waking up" until the next day. If your child is small, you can even get them to say "goodnight" to the screen before popping it away.
Time to get crafty!
There are some cute phone sleeping bags available for purchase on Etsy, but you could just as easily turn the idea into a fun craft activity to make with the kids.
An old sock could be decorated with fabric pens or felt and turned into a bed for a phone. An old beanie could become a sleeping bag for an Ipad, and an old laptop protector/case could be decorated as a bedtime spot for a laptop.
Remember, if your kids help make something like this, they're far more likely to respect the rules in place around them!
Let us know if you give it a try. We'd love to see what DIY sleeping bags you come up with!
Why my partner and I don’t see eye-to-eye on screen time
Ahead of our Screen Free Challenge, Shevonne Hunt discusses her approach to tech with the kids - and why it's different to her partner's.
How to avoid screen time tantrums and other tech tips for kids
Got a problem getting your little one off your iPad? Learn how to unplug them without the tears.
5 ways to prevent technology getting in the way of childhood
Stay in charge of your child's development, writes Dr Vanessa LaPointe.
Would your kids call you phone addicted?
Of course not, you'd like to say. Yet that’s what our behavior is telling them, say the experts.
Teacher’s clever hand washing trick for littlies goes viral
A teacher's simple trick to teach kids to wash their hands properly is what every parent needs.
Italy's new strict car seat laws to stop "forgotten baby syndrome"
Italy has introduced a new law requiring parents to have special alarmed car seats.
"Sensitive Santa" is coming to Westfield for kids with sensory needs
Westfield is offering a ‘Sensitive Santa’ experience for kids who have autism and other sensory needs.
When it comes to boys and dance, we could all learn a thing or two from Japan
Why aren't we encouraging and celebrating our boys who dance? Let's take a leaf out of Japan's book.