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Natural Awakenings

Unplug During Screen-Free Week: Turn to Healthier Activities

Mar 13, 2012 02:39PM

The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends zero screen time for children under 2 and less than two hours per day for older children. Yet, the Kaiser Family Foundation reports that 40 percent of 3-month-old infants are regular viewers of television and DVDs, and school-age kids spend nearly twice as many hours with screen media such as television, video games, computers and handheld devices as they spend attending school. To help kids, families, schools and communities turn off screens and turn on healthier activities, the Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood (CCFC) urges everyone to participate in Screen-Free Week, April 30 through May 6.

CCFC is a national coalition of health care professionals, educators, advocacy groups, parents and individuals, with a mission to reclaim childhood from corporate marketers. “The commercialization of childhood is the link between many of the most serious problems facing children and society today,” advises CCFC Director Susan Linn. “Childhood obesity, eating disorders, youth violence, sexualization, family stress, underage alcohol and tobacco use, rampant materialism and the erosion of children’s creative play are all exacerbated by advertising and marketing.”

Learn more about the weeklong event, efforts to restrict marketers’ access to children and how to help, at CommercialFreeChildhood.org.

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