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by Jane Kostenko, Nutrition Educator,
University of Maryland Extension Food Supplement Nutrition Education
Screen-Free Week is April 29-May 5, 2013
Spring has sprung! The weather is getting warmer, and children have lots of energy! What a perfect time to celebrate “Screen-Free Week”. Screen-Free Week is an annual celebration where children, families, schools, and communities turn off screens and enjoy more time with families and friends. Screen-Free Week isn’t just about turning off screens for seven days. It is a springboard for lifestyle changes that improve well-being by reducing dependence on entertainment screen media.
Here are some tips on how to do it…
Family Project during Screen-Free Week
-During the week before Screen-Free Week, ask each member of your family to track how much time they spend in front of a screen on any given day. Screens include computers, T.V.s, playing on cell phones, Ipads, and video games.
-Have each person then track their physical activity and other “screen-free” activities over the course of Screen-Free Week. If your family tracked screen time the week before, compare results.
Encourage Healthy Behaviors at Home
There are many activities families can do together that do not involve the T.V., computer, cell phones, or video games! Encourage students and families to try one of these activities this week:
Visit a farmers’ market or grocery store and select fruits and vegetables for meals and snacks throughout the week.
• Be physically active together – take a walk, walk the dog, ride bikes, go to the park, or play active games together.
• Visit the library and read “The Bernstein Bears and Too Much TV”, “Box-Head Boy and Aunt Chip” and “The Great Triple Creek Dam Affair” – all stories that provide ideas for time without television.
Have the whole family help with family meals. Even children can help with meal planning, meal preparation and clean up.
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