#1 Technology tip for Parents after 20+ Years

Parents must proactively address the fact we are living in an increasingly digital world. Personally, I’ve worked in K-12 education technology for just over 20 years now and the #1 tip I have is this:
All personal technology devices (laptops, iPads, mobile phones, tablets, [insert name of the next thing to be invented], etc.) must be stored out of children’s reach every night. Period.
This single strategy alone promotes healthy habits, defines appropriate roles, clarifies boundaries, ensures adequate rest, and more.
Always remember PARENTS are in CHARGE and get to make & enforce the house rules, therefore, you run the house and all technology inside of it.
What tip might you offer today’s parents?

Lessons from vacation: 7 Days without technology

1995 was the last time I went 7 straight days without technology. No internet. No social media. No texting. Nada. Here’s what one ‘tech free’ week recently taught me:


It’s easy to break the technology “habit” when…

  • You are intentional about doing so
  • You can count on your team back at work
  • You have provided emergency contact information to folks back home in case of emergencies

I missed technology when…

  • I wanted to enrich my experience by learning more about something (animal, weather patterns, historical marker, etc.)
  • I reached for my iPhone out of habit – no reason – just a habit.


I learned…

  • I do not need technology
  • I benefit from technology
  • I LOVED feeling connected to my wife and family without distraction
  • 535 emails upon my return didn’t make a bit of difference in the scope of my life
    • 95 minutes to delete/file/forward all but 84 of those emails
    • New approach – I started ignoring email all but twice per day. (Think about it… if I can eliminate 84% of a week’s worth of emails in an hour and a half, my productivity should increase dramatically by intentionally ignoring email until focused time. I’ll keep you posted.)
  • Social Media went on without me and I did not need to ‘catch up’

When was the last time you were without technology for a “long time” and what did you learn?