Sunday, April 26, 2009

The Book Chook Turns It Off

This week has been Turn Off Week. This was brought home to me in a spectacular way when our neighbourhood had a power failure, just on dark on Monday evening. I ran around in a flurry of feathers, searching for candles, matches, torches - and you guessed it, fresh batteries. (I'm not sure if Turn Off discourages the use of batteries, but I discovered I can't read by candlelight.)

What I noticed first of all, was the quiet. Not even the hum of the fridge and freezer disturbed the silence. Next I noticed I had a craving for a cup of tea, or any hot drink. After I spoke sternly to myself about mind over matter, I began to relax and fetched my current book (
White Crane-Samurai Kids, by Sandy Fussell - review coming soon). And that's when I really started to enjoy myself!

Turn Off Week is a wake-up call to those of us who find our lives dominated by TV, or any form of electronic entertainment. It's a time to examine how much of our time is spent glued to a screen. Instead, there are suggestions for families to have a meal together, play a board game together, or get active and go for a walk. I would also like to suggest reading aloud to each other, or creating something beautiful. How about
playing word games in the dark, and saving electricity at the same time?

It's important to get our priorities right where screen time is concerned. (I loved the quote from one young man giving feedback at "I really didn't like TV-Turnoff Week except that I did notice that my grades went up and I was in a good mood all week.") There's nothing inherently "bad" about our electronic age, I believe, so long as we keep a balance. I've been turning my computer off an hour early, a habit I very much needed to adopt, and catching up on some more reading.

Any minute now, my grades will go up and I'll be in a good mood all week!

Photo credit:


  1. sally apokedak27 April, 2009

    Oh, I love turning off the electricity.

    Several years ago I read all the Little House books to my family by oil lantern light. We read every night for a couple of hours. It was a great time.

    Recent blog post: Where Are the Contemporary YA Novels for the Pollyanna Crowd?

  2. That's such a great idea, Sally. Thanks for adding value to my blog!

    Recent blog post: The Book Chook Turns It Off

  3. Corey Schwartz29 April, 2009

    Oh, gosh. I need Turn Off Week more than my kids. They are great at making up pretend games. I am the one who is constantly in front of a computer screen! EEK!

    Recent blog post: My New Favorite Person- Cynthea Liu

  4. It's so hard to do when your work is on the computer, isn't it Corey.

    (I'm off to read why Cynthea Liu is your new favourite person!)

    Recent blog post: Review, Samurai Kids, Book 1: White Crane


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