Screen-Free Week is an annual, international celebration when schools, families, and community groups pledge to spend seven days without entertainment screen media.* Instead of watching TV, surfing the web, or playing video games, they read, play, think, create, get physically active, and spend more time with friends and family.*Screens are so important to modern life that sorting out what’s entertainment and what’s work or communication can be difficult. You absolutely don’t have to stop using your computer for work or school—but if screens of any kind are interfering with your family time (including meals), you may want to think carefully about how you’re using them.
Regardless of whether children are consuming “good” or “bad” programming, it’s clear that screen media dominates the lives of far too many kids, displacing all sorts of other activities that are integral to childhood. Excessive screen time is linked to poor school performance, childhood obesity, and attention problems. And it is primarily through screens that children are exposed to harmful marketing.
Screen-Free Week is a fun and innovative opportunity to reduce our dependence on entertainment screen media, including television, video games, computers, and hand-held devices. It’s a chance for children—and adults—to rediscover the joys of life beyond the screen. Check out commercialfreechildhood.org for more useful resources.