The Seven Day Luddite Challenge

One big problem with homeschool is temptation. Unless you have low-altitude helicopter parents, temptation is a many-headed Hydra, never truly slain. For every Youtube link ignored, there’s a funny Facebook post and a delicious treat in the kitchen. No one will notice! The downside is homeschool takes incredible self-discipline.

For me, this didn’t get better after homeschool. I don’t have a strong willpower. Even now, three other tabs and a box of poptarts beckon. Yesterday, I realized this problem was never going to go away unless I cut it at the root and learned to live happily without material temptresses.

What is the Seven Day Luddite Challenge?

Before you ask, we’re not smashing textile machines. “Luddite” in the new sense just means anti-technology. Obviously, from my blurb down there, you can see I’m not ANTI-technology. However, most of my temptations are centered on the Glowing Screen of Unproductivity.

Starting at the end of your Fall semester or later, I want you to join me in abandoned our home computer and home Internet for seven straight days. If you’re anywhere close to the average homeschool nerd, just imagine how much of your time is spent on the computer, reading blog posts on a site like this. If you didn’t have a computer or Internet access, what would you do for seven days instead? Read? Write? Draw? Make things?

What are the rules of the challenge?

Print them out if you need to see them once you start!

*Starting on a date of your choice, you may NOT utilize a computer or an Internet connection except under the following circumstances:

*****You may utilize a computer or Internet connection in case of an emergency.

*****You may utilize a computer or Internet connection when your livelihood depends on it (if you work and your job involves a computer).

*You may utilize other, non-Internet, non-personal computer technologies (television, scanner, robot buddy), but these are highly discouraged. Remember: the goal is to teach a little self discipline!

*You must actively abstain from other temptations like overeating as much as possible.

*Seven days later, the challenge ends, and these restrictions disappear. In any way possible, write down your experience with technological abstinence. Blog posts and diary entries are all acceptable. What was great about it? What was awful? More importantly, what did you learn?

Why should I take the Seven Day Luddite Challenge?

Are you, too, suffering from high stress, chronic multitasking, or constant procrastination? The challenge will give you all the time in the world to get those clothes folded, go mountain biking, and just lie on your bed, completely relaxed. Treat yourself to a bubble bath if you can. You’ll learn to live without personal computers like your parents and grandparents did growing up. Maybe you’ll hate it, but maybe you’ll love it.

We can’t go back to a world without computers and Internet. We CAN choose to live our lives without tech. I hope, at the end of the Seven Day Luddite Challenge, we’ll be able to make that choice for ourselves.

This is the Homeschool Survivor, signing out. Check back next week for post-finals rumination. Have a great week, and don’t forget to leave a comment if you’re taking the leap with me!


The Homeschool Survivor is a self-proclaimed “real nerd” who considers leaving his USB drive at home a national emergency. He was homeschooled for most of his life and loved it (to the extent one can “love” school).

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