Screen-Free Week is almost here! On April 18-24, children, families, schools, and communities around the country will turn off entertainment screen media (TV, video games, computer games, apps, etc.) and turn on life. It’s a chance to unplug and read, play, daydream, create, explore nature, and spend more time with family and friends.
Since 1996, millions of children and their families have participated in Screen-Free Week (formerly TV-Turnoff). Each year, thousands of parents, teachers, PTA members, librarians, scoutmasters, and clergy organize Screen-Free Weeks in their communities. This year, Screen-Free celebrations are being planned around the country, including:
- Long Island, NY, where the Early Years Institute is working with local merchants and community organizations to provide wonderful screen-free activities for children and families for free or at discounted prices.
- Santa Rosa, CA, where the Hidden Valley Elementary School Student Government has challenged its students to see which class can come up with the greatest number of screen-free activities.
- Lexington, KY, where the Church of St. Michael the Archangel is incorporating Screen-Free Week into its observation of Holy Week.
- Twin Falls, ID, where the College of Southern Idaho will make Screen-Free Week part of its Green Week/Earth Day celebration.
- Annville, PA, where St. Paul’s Church will kick off the week with a “Give TV the Boot” hike and scavenger hunt.
Please let us know what you have planned for Screen-Free Week by registering your event at http://www.commercialfreechildhood.org/screenfreeweek/registration.html. Click here to find a listing of Screen-Free Week celebrations around the country. And if you’re on Facebook, please become a fan of Screen-Free Week to share your plans for the week and exchange strategies for limiting screen time.
If you haven’t started planning for Screen-Free Week, there’s still time to start. It’s not hard and lots of fun. Our 2011 Organizer’s Kit includes step-by-step organizing instructions, handouts, suggestions for screen-free activities, and tips for reducing screen time all year round. The kit also comes with two beautiful posters for promoting Screen-Free Week in your school or community. In addition to your printed booklet and posters, we’ll send you an electronic version of the guide so you can start planning your screen-free fun right away. Organizer’s Kits, posters, and Screen-Free Week t-shirts can be purchased here.
Screen-Free Week is endorsed by seventy leading health, education, and childcare organizations including the American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry, the American Public Health Association, the National Head Start Association, KaBOOM!, the US Play Coalition, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Center to Prevent Childhood Obesity, and the Parent Teacher Associations of Massachusetts, Michigan, Florida, and Missouri. You can read why experts and advocates support Screen-Free Week by clicking here. If your organization would like to endorse the week, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Here’s to a great Screen-Free Week!