As Chanukah begins, M.U.S.T Crown Heights is issuing a challenge to Chabad parents around the world to ‘light it up by powering it down’ and commit to going screen-free for the 30 minutes after lighting the menorah.
As the world of technology evolves around us at a dizzying pace, hundreds of committed Chabad mothers from around the world have joined forces to navigate the world of technology and its impact on their young children.
As Chanukah begins, M.U.S.T Crown Heights is issuing a challenge to Chabad parents and families around the world. To ‘light it up by powering it down’ and commit to joining Jews across the world in going screen-free for the 30 minutes after lighting the menorah. We are taught that the time directly after candle lighting is immensely spiritually potent. It is a time when we are halachically mandated to refrain from mundane work and to sit with candles, basking in their holy glow. The Freideker Rebbe told us that “we must listen to the lights” and the mystic secrets they hold.
This precious time, post candle lighting, is also a unique opportunity to listen to our little lights, our children, and gift them with our full focus and presence. By abandoning our cell phones and electronics at this time we can really savor the moment. We afford ourselves the opportunity to focus on our families and facilitate activities that encourage connection and positive family time. Extensive research has shown that engaging with other people without the distractions of electronics can result in greater levels of well-being and happiness. There is no better gift than our presence.
As an added bonus, M.U.S.T has arranged a Chanukah Giveaway and will be raffling off eight $150 giftcards to Toys4u. All families that rise to the challenge (in or out of Crown Heights) and spend half an hour of screen-free time together as a family are eligible to enter the Giveaway. Entries must be submitted by midnight on the 8th day of Chanukah at www.must-ch.org/raffle. The raffle will be drawn on December 7th, 3rd of Teves. Entries are limited to one per family.
Additionally, M.U.S.T mothers and a team of experts have compiled a list of affordable gift ideas for children that foster growth and connection.
- Dance Mat
- The Upside Down Challenge
- Gib Gab
- Cover Your Assets
- Settlers of Catan
- Exploding Kittens
- Monopoly Deal
A detailed gift guide can also be viewed at https://www.must-ch.org/gift-guide-2/.
The aim of M.U.S.T (Mothers Unite to Stall Technology) is to stall the time until a child receives their own personal digital device for as long as possible. Thus delaying their access to the pressures and potential damaging effects of the internet until they are more mature.
To date, M.U.S.T has ‘class pacts’ in 75 classrooms set up by trained M.U.S.T. ambassadors. A ‘class pact’ functions as an agreement between parents of the class, agreeing to hold off on introducing devices to their children. Pacts are class specific and range from basic agreements to hold off on devices to more specific agreements, such as a class-wide curfew, refraining from social media (even on family shared devices), or other measures that the parents determine are appropriate. For more information about M.U.S.T or to request a pact for your child’s class, please visit https://www.must-ch.org/become-an-ambassador/.
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