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Try a Technology-Free Table


In our first book, The Family Dinner, we present “Ten Simple Steps to Successful Family Dinners.” A couple of those rules can be quickly summarized thus: “No Screens!”

No Phones: Do not answer the phone at dinner. Do not allow any cellphones at the table. No ringing, vibrating, answering, or texting allowed. If someone does bring their phone, take it away for as long as you decide to keep it. That will teach them to leave it elsewhere next time.

No Television: Of course, that also includes any electronic device like computers, iPads, Kindles, game devices, etc. Your kids will argue they can do three things at the same time (watch TV, eat, and listen closely to your every word, maybe even IM, too!), but it doesn’t matter.

As with all the rules in Chapter Two, pay no attention to the complaining. It’s just human nature to resist. Your job is to insist! Enforcement must apply to everyone (even Mom and Dad).

It’s important to talk to one another as a family at the table, as it may be one of the few times during the day you are all together. Modern technology may provide great tools for communication, education and entertainment. But at the family dinner table, it’s all just distraction.


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One Response

  1. Tina says:

    Yes!  I have to watch myself with this one.  We are good about not bringing screens to the table, but as the conversation gets going I am often tempted to Google this or that- nope!  ”It’s dinnertime, Mom.” (the 7 yr old is the best enforcer)

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