Saturday, April 30, 2011

101 Screen-Free Activities

At Home

1. Listen to the radio.
2. Write an article or story.
3. Paint a picture, a mural or a room.
4. Write to the President, your Representative, or Senators.
5. Read a book. Read to someone else.
6. Learn to change the oil or tire on a car. Fix something.
7. Write a letter to a friend or relative.
8. Make cookies, bread or jam and share with a neighbor.
9. Read magazines or newspapers. Swap them with friends.
10. Go through your closets and donate items to Goodwill, the Salvation Army, or a local rummage sale. Have a garage sale.
11. Start a diary/journal.
12. Play cards.
13. Make crafts to give as gifts. Try a new craft.
14. Do a crossword puzzle or play Sudoku.
15. Save money: cancel your cable TV!
16. Learn about a different culture. Have an international dinner.
17. Teach a child some of your favorite childhood games.
18. Study sign language.
19. Write a letter to your favorite author.
20. Cook dinner with friends or family.
21. Make cards for holidays or birthdays.
22. Play chess, bridge, or checkers.
23. Play charades.
24. Have a cup of coffee and a conversation.
25. Repair or refinish a piece of furniture.
26. Make a wooden flower box.
27. Wake up early and make pancakes.
28. Read a favorite poem. Read poems by poets new to you.


29. Learn about native trees and flowers in your area.
30. Plan a picnic or barbecue.
31. Go bird watching. Learn the names of local birds.
32. Walk the dog. Wash the dog.
33. Plant a garden. Work in your garden.
34. Take a nature hike.
35. Feed fish or birds.
36. Watch the night sky through binoculars and identify different constellations. Observe the moon.
37. Learn to use a compass.
38. Take photographs and then organize them into an album.
39. Do yard work.
40. Go camping.
41. Take an early morning walk.
42. Climb a tree.
43. Watch a sunset; watch the sunrise with a friend.

Around Town

44. Attend a community concert. Listen to a local band.
45. Visit the library. Borrow some books.
46. Visit a local bookstore.
47. Visit the zoo.
48. Visit the countryside or town. Travel by bus or train.
49. Attend a religious service.
50. Walk to work or school.
51. Attend a live sports event.
52. Look for treasures at a yard sale.
53. Try out for a play. Attend a play.
54. Collect recycling and drop it off at a recycling center.
55. Learn to play a musical instrument.
56. Go to a museum.

On the Move

57. Go roller skating or ice skating.
58. Go swimming. Join a community swim team.
59. Start a community group that walks, runs or bikes.
60. Organize a game of touch football, baseball, or softball in the local park.
61. Go for a bicycle ride.
62. Learn yoga.
63. Play soccer, softball or volleyball.
64. Play Frisbee.
65. Workout.
66. Go dancing. Take a dance class.

In Your Community

67. Organize a community clean-up or volunteer for charity.
68. Become a tutor.
69. Join a choir. Sing!
70. Start a bowling team.
71. Visit and get to know your neighbors.
72. Start a fiction or public policy book group.

With the Kids

73. Make paper bag costumes and have a parade.
74. Design a poster for Screen-Free Week.
75. Discover your community center or local park activities.
76. Blow bubbles.
77. Draw family portraits.
78. Build a fort in the living room and camp out.
79. Research your family history. Make a family tree.
80. Invent a new game and teach it to your friends.
81. Make a sign to tape across the TV during Screen-Free Week.
82. Play hopscotch, hide & seek, or freeze-tag.
83. Organize a neighborhood scavenger hunt.
84. Play board games with family and friends.
85. Clean up or redecorate your room.
86. Make puppets out of old socks and have a puppet show.
87. Write a play with friends. Perform it at a nursing home.
88. Construct a kite. Fly it.
89. Go on a family trip or historical excursion.
90. If it’s snowing, go sledding or make a snowman.
91. Create a collage out of old magazine pictures.
92. Shoot hoops with friends. Play a round of H.O.R.S.E.
93. Make a friendship bracelet.
94. Create a cookbook with all your favorite recipes.
95. Tell stories around a campfire.
96. Plan a slumber party.
97. Bake cakes or cookies and invite friends for a tea party.
98. Construct a miniature boat and float it on water.
99. Write a letter to your grandparents. Make a special card.
100.Create sidewalk art with chalk.
101.Everyone! Have a huge party to celebrate a Screen-Free Week!

Green hour

A Green Hour is time for unstructured play and interaction with the natural world. In 2007, the National Wildlife Federation launched, an online resource providing parents the inspiration and tools to make the outdoors a part of daily life.

NWF recommends that parents give their kids a "Green Hour" every day.This can take place in a garden, a backyard, the park down the street, or any place that provides safe and accessible green spaces where children can learn and play. Scientific researchshows kids are happier and healthier when outdoor time is in better balance with indoor time.

Family Meals: Let’s Bring Them Back

We can’t overstate the importance of screen-free family meals. Eating together and engaging in conversation builds strong family bonds. It’s an opportunity to help kids get in the habit of reflecting on their day, sharing stories, telling jokes, and talking about what’s going on in the world. It’s often during family meal conversations that family stories and family history get
passed down from generation to generation. Family meals can ensure healthier eating,

1 especially when they are screen-free.

2 They are linked to healthier behavior and closer child-parent bonds, particularly among adolescents.

3 The more family meals teenagers have, the less likely it is that they will engage in substance abuse and other anti-social behaviors.

4 The meals also contribute to a closer, more honest, and more authentic bond between
parents and kids. Three out of four teenagers report that they talk to their parents about what’s going on in their life during family meals.

5 And eight out of ten parents report that they find out more about what’s going on in their children’s lives when they eat together.

6 It’s easier to maintain family meals throughout adolescence when they are an enjoyable tradition early on. If, however, you’ve drifted away from family meals and want to embrace them again, try to plan ahead so that eating together is not overly stressful for anyone.

For single parent families, or when two parents are in the workplace, meal preparation, and cleaning up afterwards, can feel burdensome. It makes a big difference if everyone—even the youngest members—has a role to play.

Distribute tasks like meal preparation, serving, setting and clearing the table, and washing dishes among all members of the family. Or work together—it’s more fun that way. Try to agree on the menu beforehand, so that there’s no tension about likes and dislikes of the food being served. For many families these days, work and school schedules make it impossible to eat together every day. If you can only manage to do it one, two, or three nights per week, aim for the same day(s) of the week and at the same times. Creating a regular schedule will make it easier to turn family meals into a lasting tradition.

And remember—concentrate on the food and each other. Avoid electronic distractions!

1. Woodruff, S. J., et al. (2010), Healthy eating index-C is positively associated with family dinner frequency among students in grades
6-8 from Southern Ontario, Canada. European Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 64(5), pp. 454-460.
2. Fitzpatrick, E. et al., (2007). Positive effects of family dinner are undone by television viewing Journal of the American Dietetic Association, 107, pp. 666-671.
3. Survey from the Center for Alcohol and Substance Abuse (2010). The Importance of Family Dinners IV. New York: Columbia University; Sen, B. (2010). The relationship between frequency of family dinner and adolescent problem behaviors after adjusting for
other family characteristics. Journal of Adolescence, 33(1), pp. 187-196.
4. Ibid.
5. Sen, B. (2010). The relationship between frequency of family dinner and adolescent problem behaviors after adjusting for other family characteristics. Journal of Adolescence, 33(1), pp. 187-196.

game night and screen-proof our home

What a fun night is game night!
My children got a few new game for their birthday and tonight they wanted to play Clue Harry Potter edition. So their father read the direction and we all played it. It was fun!
I hope you do have those game night in your home.
I would also like to share with you those tips to screen-proof your home:

1- Rearrange the furniture. Turn your living room and family room into places for interaction, games and conversation, not mini theaters.

2. Make children’s bedrooms.

3. After Screen-Free Week, set consistent limits about children’s screen-time.
• No more than 2 hours per day on weekends and no recreational screens during the school/work week would be great.

And remember, the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends no screen time for babies
and toddlers under age 2.

4. Set limits on your own screen time. The example you set is as important as your rules.

5. Institute screen-free (and phone-free) meals. Talk, laugh, tell stories, and enjoy your food.

6. Try not to rely on screens as a babysitter.

7. Involve children in household chores, projects, and meal preparation.

8. Designate at least one day each week as Family Screen-Free Day

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

who is watching those programs?

CSI, Law and Order, Crimunal Minds... but who is watching those programs?

Those scenario are sick! I had to watch one or two to make my own opinion and I can tell you that I got nightmares! I am still haunted by those sick people depicted and analysed and exposed to us over and over again.

What is wrong with those producers?
Don't they see what they are doing by showing so many crime and deviated people?
All my friends around me cannot stand those programs.
I can just imagine that those enjoying seeing those are kind of sick themselves.
Even more scary for me is that considering that commercials repeat over and over the same message to persuade viewers to spend money on their product, how those program are working? Showing over and over crime and perversion?

I am convinced that they are nourishing all perversion in so many individual watching them.
What kind of messages television are carnying?
I understand the interest for police work like depicted in the old fashion show, Columbo or Agatha Christie. But all those series are sick!

Obviously adult are not responsible enough to simply not watch otherwise those shows will not proliferate . Isn't that time for the producers to take charge? Is profit going to be the lead to our new word?
Feeding people junk because it give a bigger profit that healthy?
Showing sick show because of the profit, denying all the impact those may have on our society?

I am sure that people sleep a lot better after watching an happy show like, let say "Dancing with the star" than after watching a sick one like Criminal minds. This one seems the worse to me right now as he really make the criminal the stat of the show, digging in his mind and perversity.

So yes I am asking, who is watching those sick programs?

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

cyber addiction

Just in third grade and already spending hours every weeks playing video game: seem familiar? If you know a child like this you should read this article:

We all enjoy the benefits of the Internet, and for many of us it is also an indispensable tool for work, education, and communication. While time spent on the Internet can be hugely productive, for some people compulsive Internet use can interfere with daily life, work and relationships.

When you feel more comfortable with your online friends than your real ones, or you can’t stop yourself from playing games, gambling, or compulsively surfing, even when it has negative consequences in your life, then you may be using the Internet too much. Learn about the signs and symptoms of Internet addiction and how you can get balance back in your online life:

Monday, April 11, 2011

Screen-Free Week is almost here!

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.

Q: Why turn off all the screens completely? Can we do it for just one day?
A. Turning off the screens for seven full days helps participants realize that life without screen-time is not impossible and may actually be more fun. A week-long turnoff allows sufficient time to develop habits likely to be more productive and rewarding. A one-day turnoff is easier—but doesn’t give people enough of a break from the noise to reassess the power of screens in their lives.

Q: Are all screens bad? What about PBS?
A. One purpose of Screen-Free Week is to leave behind judgments about the quality of programming and focus instead on creating, discovering, building, participating and doing. Regardless of the quality of media, there is no denying that, for most children today, time spent with screens overwhelms all other leisure activities—and that too much screen time is harmful. Use Screen-Free Week as a catalyst for enjoying the world.

Saturday, April 02, 2011

a new book which seems interesting

I did not read it yet but this book seems interesting.

FAST MEDIA, MEDIA FAST is an exciting guide for taking a liberating media fast in an age of increasingly fast media. It is the first book to provide readers a practical, user-friendly and thought-provoking guide to gaining a newfound control and understanding of their relationship with the media. This researched, seasoned manual provides specific guidelines, important areas for thought, creative options and life-changing opportunities.

FAST MEDIA, MEDIA FAST also shows how to take control of the media choices in our lives. This book is not a judgmental, media-bashing sermon, but rather an inspiring guide to cultural nutrition. In fact, most people do not typically choose to eliminate all media from their lives when they return from a fast, but rather make more informed and conscious choices about what to consume, how much, when, and why. Fasters also return more rested, revitalized, and thoughtful, often excited about new directions and purpose, or about being better organized and centered.

The reader of FAST MEDIA, MEDIA FAST will find out how to eliminate or minimize problems – stress, overwork, waste, burn-out, fuzziness, speed-up, apathy, emptiness, ebbing relationships -- which come from media overdoses in our modern world. She will learn that there are alternatives which allow us to regain control over our lives. FAST MEDIA, MEDIA FAST acquaints us with how fast media are changing our lives, and what we can do about it. Many readers will rediscover original thinking, creativity, what they always wanted to do, and to become deeply fulfilled in their lives.