Turning the Tables on Technology with Dolmio #TechFreeTables

At dinnertime I try and banish ALL technology from the
dinner table! It’s not always easy; hubbie
has just found the virtues of Pokemon Go and is convinced he will miss a rare
one if he switches his phone off for more than a few minutes at a time. Admittedly he would not start playing until
his own meal was finished, but he would wolf it down well before we even made a
dent into our own dinners. I think we
need to lead by example and if we don’t bring a phone to the dinner table the
boys will hopefully learn to follow suit, without it turning into a battle.

Eldest has recently had his first mobile phone and can often
be found texting his best friend, I wouldn’t mind so much as its good to encourage close friendships but most of the messages are
completely random: “dear sir please let me dance” and “I am sending you my
messages from the future”– and this can go on and on until he either runs out
of credit or I moan at him to stop!!! 
Technology has its place of course; when we are out and about I would be
lost without my phone to keep my blog ticking over.

But I still want dinnertime to be about us talking as a
family, hopefully opening up conversation so we can learn more about each
other’s days, our highs and lows. 
Although from the sounds of it I am not the only mum finding it hard to
set tech boundaries, in the Dolmio® survey of 2,000 UK respondents one in three
households have unsuccessfully tried to ban technology from the dinner
table. It really is a big distraction;
if your focus is on a screen your attention is away from your family so I can
see why so many families want to ban it. 
I do not think it’s asking too much for everyone to down their phones
and laptops for such a short period each day to spend quality time
together. It’s very difficult though as
it’s become second nature to be attached to our phones, even I feel a little
lost when it’s not close to hand. It’s
important to have a break though, step away from the technology and give your
children the attention they deserve – personally I try and hide everything out
of sight, so everyone has no choice but to chat to each other!

Dolmio want to help families reconnect around the dinner
table, they realise its not going to be easy especially after discovering that
the average family have 12 internet-connected devices!!! I think we are a bit shy of that figure at
around eight, but still it illustrates just how much we have come to surround
ourselves in technology. Fortunately
Louise Redknapp is working alongside Dolmio in their bid for tech free tables,
she has some fantastic practical tips that can make all the difference, my
favourite is the one where the first to access technology at the table has to
do the washing up, so simple but extremely effective especially for my own work
shy boys! I think disconnecting them from the internet is a classic as you can see from the video below.

I also have a fabulous Dolmio hamper to giveaway (worth £50) as I would love to hear your tips for banishing technology at the dinner

If you would like to enter
please fill out the form below by the 26th of September.

Win a Dolmio Hamper Worth £50

285 thoughts on “Turning the Tables on Technology with Dolmio #TechFreeTables

  1. I hate tech at the table so it's quite simple here. No food if there is tech on the table. I encourage to speak about our day instead.

  2. We don't have technology in our home at the dinner table, I even turn the tele off if its on due to the little one sitting there more ingrossed in the tele than eating her dinner, we sit and talk about what we've done throughout the day and we tell "Daddy" then he will tell us what he has done at work it's nice to sit down as a family at the dinner table and talk whilst eating dinner ☺️ ��������������Laura Jayne��������������

  3. We just order all to be turned off and if anybody doesn't they get no sweet/dessert – adults included!!

  4. Technology at the table is banned…..in fact it's banned for two hours in total between five and seven pm…..it's the time we use to talk, prep tea, eat eat, clear up etc. Then and only then when everyone has helped can technology be resumed!

  5. We don't allow techno!ogy at the table, we chat about our day. Admittedly the boys eat quick if they are mid game!

  6. Family Rule Number 1! My children are 35, 30 and 29 and they wouldn't dream of using their phone at my table therefore my Grandchildren are learning by example what is acceptable and what is not.

  7. Meal time is family time with no gadgets of any sort allowed.ever the 2 eldest aged 21 and 19 don't use phones x

  8. We have NO tech whatsoever at the table. Even if I hear my phone ring, I will leave it until our family meal is over. It's frightening to see just how many people lose the ability of a normal conversation just because of tech getting in the way.

  9. The parental controls on the internet are used to stop any sneaky internet whilst the food is being prepared, cooked an eaten. The Internet is notavailable to anyone at all whilst we have food. Everyone usually helps in the kitchen to prepare, cook and serve the food. The T.V. Is turned off and any mobile phones are left on a shelf to charge up while we cook and eat. We don't always eat at the table. Sometimes we eat together in the garden or in the summer we have a barbecue picnic outside and sometimes on Birthdays, at celebrations, etc., we sit the person who's Birthday it is at the table and they are waited on and made a fuss of to make them feel special. The only time tech is used at the table is whenwe use the electric salt and pepper grinders.
    If we have guests over, they are encouraged to get involved with food prep and cooking and to leave their phone to charge so we can focuss on making them fell as though they really are part of our family and if we are visiting we always offer to help in the kitchen or lay the table for our hosts anf if they use tech at the table we respect that they do, but we don't and try to engage in conversation with the tech user to remind them they have company and are being a little bit inconsiderate towards their guests, but not everyone gets the hint, but that's fine aswe aren't enforcers, but engagers and if any of our hosts want to use tech at their dinner table, then that is fine, their house, their rules.

  10. It just isn't on, when having a meal you should be enjoying the meal and the people's company who are there with you. It's a given – no tech.

  11. the kids dont bring thier tech to the table at first i had to turn off the internet now they know its a rule, its only time we sit down together to chat as a family!

  12. we have never had tech at the table and no tv on whilst eating or the children get distracted/engrossed and don't eat. It is never a problem they have known from a young age that it's not allowed and we encourage talking and conversations at the table

  13. It's just a rule we have, no phones etc at the table, we eat together as a family every day. Everyone just knows not to even consider playing on tech whilst at the table 🙂

  14. Involve the kids with making the meal, and involve them in conversation they are more likely to forget their tech if involved in other activities. CHERYL HADFIELD

  15. To accommodate people who struggle with understimulation, music on in the background is usually enough to help them focus and not need to use any tech, I find.

    Of course, some people are easily *over*stimulated and need either only food and conversation, or even no conversation while they just eat.

    So it's a question of communicating honestly and kindly and negotiating something that suits people as well as is possible.

    1. And of course this applies to all ages and abilities. It's never too early to start learning how to communicate and negotiate sensory/cognitive needs.

  16. Top tip to ensure no technology at the dining table turn off the router and just like shoes when you enter the house leave all tech in the hallway 😀

  17. I'm totally with you on the no gadgets at the dinner table rule! The eldest has just started properly using his phone, and is forever fiddling with it lately. When it comes to mealtimes, no arguments, it's handed over as they're not allowed at the dinner table!

  18. Have a padded box for everyone's phone to go in. No phone is allowed to be answered even the house phone during meals. They will either ring you back or it wasn't that important.

  19. This is mainly my boyfriends mum who has a problem with it as she is not a technology person so gets frustrated when people sit at the dinner table with their phones constantly pinging. Its mainly my boyfriends dad who gets told of constantly and told to put his phone away

  20. my kids only have a certain amount of time allowed on their kindles and it ends before dinner time, my kids are so ignorant when they are on them we've had no choice but to restrict it

  21. I have never allowed technology during meal times in our home, we enjoy spending family time at the table, we discuss each others days and often plan what we will do that evening or for the upcoming weekend 🙂

  22. all have 5 mins to chat about our day (during this times others sat round table ask questions and comment too to the one who is having 5 mins. before you know it all tables done and so is dinner 🙂

  23. I think it is best to have routine and boundaries. No technology at Dining Table. Meal times are for meals. " There is a time and a place for everything". Ideally a study area for use of computer, and parents allowed to supervise etc. As children need guidance, support, protection etc.

    Rachel Craig

  24. No tv in the kitchen/dining room and no electronics brought to the table when we all sit down together for dinner to discuss our day.

  25. We've never let it be introduced in the first place, so it isn't an issue – if the food is good, the conversation will flow and nobody will want to be distracted by tech. And everybody loves pasts, so it's the perfect introduction to no-tech mealtimes

  26. We've never banned technology at the table we just don't use it, however it does seem more of an issue when we are out in company with other people – sometimes every table you look at someone is using technology

  27. Ive never believed in tec or toys at the table and after seeing how well behaved European kids are who have been taken out to restaurants from an early age am glad i stuck to my guns – my 2 often had compliments on their behavior when we were out

  28. Lead by example. If the adults do not use technology at the dinner table then it is easy to make this a rule for the whole family.

  29. Tech is totally banned at mealtimes,plus the doorbell is ignored and the telephone switched off. We enjoy our food and each other"s company and consider it extremely bad manners to use tech at the table.We make the effort to actually talk to each other,not stare at a screen!

  30. If it is a family meal my daughters know no tech is allowed – it is a sociable and rare time appreciated by all and food and chat is the priority and usually the food is enough to get them to oblige (well they do not want to go hungry!)

  31. if anyone is caught using any tech device and meal times they loose it never actually said this to my son though hes just always automatically left his phone or tablet in the kitchen.

  32. We have never had a problem with this. Ever since the kids started eating solid foods we have always sat at the table for dinner as a family, I think the kids just no not do to it. Dinner time is to talk about everyone's day.

  33. My children have set time limits for tech anyway because of this they choose to have time on tablets etc after dinner as they know they can give it their full attention then

  34. unfortunatelly my daughter waas given technology (tablet and phones) to keep her at the dinner tabel but we quickly learnt that this was killing any itercation and conversdtaion

    now we just dont allow any technology at the dinner table so we can freely talk and have fun

  35. We have a No-Tech rule during dinner and always have done. We always tend to eat around the same time so the kids know what time they need to finish their conversations, snapchatting, games etc and I give them a regular countdown, for example 20 minutes, 10 minutes etc. It's great as it's a time of the day when we can all enjoy each other's company, catch up on each other's news and find out the little things of each other's day.

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