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Low-Tech: Step 1


Yesterday, I posted that I am in the process of turning our house to a low-tech home in the sense of turning of some of the electronics.  I am not saying that our home will not have technology at all, in fact we will still be a house that has HDTV, High-Speed Internet, smartphones, e-readers and the such.  We are just going to start using these things in moderation.   That’s right readers, I listened to your comments and that was exactly what I was trying to say but couldn’t put it to words.

I have come up with a four step solution for myself (since I am the one with the technology addiction).

  1. Turn off the TV, turn on the radio
  2. Put the iPhone down
  3. Sit down play/read to the Kid
  4. Read more myself

The first step, I am in the process of completing.  On Friday, I turned off the TV and opted for a radio station through the ROKU box.   The Kid played with his toys more then he has in a very long time.  I am not sure if this was a fluke happening or not but if this proves true for over a week, we can say that turning on the radio works.

In the study by Common Sense Media (read the whole study here) it says that 0-8 year olds spend 29 minutes a day reading and listening to music.  In contrast,  the same age group watching about 1 hour and 9 minutes of TV.   If those numbers were equal, I wouldn’t be looking at this study and being scared as much as I am.   Hot Mama and I were talking over this study and we both agree that listening to music is not nearly as bad as watching TV and just the simple fact that the Kid didn’t sit and try to watch the TV even though the radio was playing through it, is a very good sign.

If you look at how we are going about this process of bring a low-tech approach to our home, you will see that we are still going about it in a very high-tech way.  We are still using the ROKU, when I start reading more I will be using my eReader, we will still be pulling out the iPhones/camera’s when the Kid does something cool and posting it to Facebook/Twitter and YouTube and will still be a daddy blogger.  Just like in order to earn money you have to spend money, you can’t go low-tech without using some high-tech.

While I wish that I could test out the rest of this process in the next week,  it might be difficult as we are dealing with a family development.  Readers, I ask that you keep Hot Mama’s grandma in your prayers as she is fighting through her second stroke.

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About The Rookie Dad

I am husband and father foremost. Secondly, I am a PBS producer and contribute to Traveling Dads and Dads Round Table.

Posted on November 13, 2011, in Tech and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 7 Comments.

  1. I would not say you are going low-tech at all but becoming wiser in the use of gadgets. Few days ago, my wife and I were talking about the use of computers/IPads for toddlers. My daughter can operate IPhone. But there is always a tendency to get addicted to it. In pre-school, there is an option for computer learning. But I lerned years ago that the best training for kids is the basics becuase if they have strong foundtion in reading/phonetics and comprehension + discipline, they will excel in any field even the most technical. Because they have the best training early on. Similarly, in our adult life, we are so entangled with so many gadgets. hen I had my IPhone, I slowed down finishing my “To Read” books. That’s just a sign of deterioration!

    • Just in the last week, I have noticed that my reading has picked up. I’m still working on a book that I have been working since the summer and I have many other books that I want to read as well. I am hoping that throughout this process I’ll be able to finish them!

  2. Here, here! Three cheers for you!!! Oh how I wish my husband would put down his iphone more and spend time with his family. It is a very sore subject for me right now. I commend you on your efforts and will love to hear how this is going. Sorry to hear about your wife’s Grandmother.

    • Hot Mama fought me alot about my use of the iPhone. I have made a more conscience effort to spend more time with her and the Kid and she has taken note of that. Hopefully, later this week I’ll have a post about how I am putting down the iPhone but still using it. The more I look at this process it is we are still staying on the cutting edge but moderating how much we use our gadgets!

  3. Those are some good goals.

    While Isaac does enjoy watching TV/sports, the radio seems to be his preferred medium, mostly because he loves turning it on and off. Besides, music is much more fun than mindlessly watching the crap that’s on TV these days. I can honestly say that I am thrilled we don’t have cable, meaning I won’t be subjected to all those horrible kid shows that are on TV.

    As for reading (books), that’s something I need to do more of. I find myself reading about sports or other dad blogs when Isaac’s asleep. I try not to do that stuff when he’s awake and devote more time to hanging out with him. He’s only a kid once, right?

    I actually decided today that as long as the weather is cool outside (and being in Texas that means it won’t be for very long) I’m going to try and be in the house with Isaac as little as possible. We’ll see how that goes!

  4. This is great! We actually randomly tried going an evening without the TV last night in our house and it went amazingly well. I normally turn on the TV for my son so I can get dinner done and some cleaning, but instead I turned on the radio and he actually came in the kitchen and played while trying to have a conversation with me. Kudos to you on the decision to use less technology!

    • it is amazing how smooth this is working so far! We use to have a laptop that we now very rarely use, the kid doesn’t see us on it nearly as much so he doesn’t think that we are glued to the computer! I know this is going to be a process and it will have it’s ups and downs but so far so good!

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