Project Playtime Busy Bag Make & Take Workshops Offered

Free workshop to build a busy bag for your preschool-aged child

Parents with children aged 0 – 6 are invited to Project Playtime, a screen smart initiative happening in the East Kootenay region. Parents can register for a free Busy Bag Make and Take workshop where they will make 2 busy bags for their preschool aged children to use as an alternative to screen time. Offered in partnership by the Columbia Valley Early Years Coalition, Children First, and Success by 6, the event will also provide an opportunity to learn about the effects of screen use on young children.

BUSY BAG MAKE & TAKE WORKSHOP ( FREE* for families of children aged 0-6 years old. )

Nov 15 from 5:30 – 7:30 pm Sonshine Child Care Centre 326 10th Ave Invermere Child care provided

Nov 16 from 9:00 – 11:00 am Strong Start – no child care provided Martin Morigeau Elementary School 4891 Beatty Avenue, Canal Flats

*Registration required – call Greta Cell: 250-341-5625 or office: 250-342-5566 or email gcorrell@familydynamix.ca

Research clearly indicates children are spending too much time engaging with screens (i.e. TV, computer, DVD, ipads) and not enough time interacting with family, friends and caregivers.

Some studies suggest:

 On any given day, 29% of babies under the age of 1 are watching TV and videos for an

average of about 90 minutes. 23% have a television in their bedroom.1

 Time with screens increases rapidly in the early years. Between their first and second

birthday, on any given day, 64% of babies and toddlers are watching TV and videos,

averaging slightly over 2 hours. Thirty-six percent have a television in their bedroom.1

 Data varies on the amount of time preschool children spend with screen media, but even

the most conservative findings show that children between the ages of two and five average 2.2 hours per day. Other studies show that preschoolers spend as much as 4.1 and 4.6 hours per day using screen media.1

Dr. Michael Rich is an associate professor of pediatrics at Harvard Medical School, specializing in medicine and media. His “three major concerns with digital technology, or screen time, are how we sacrifice our ¬personal interactions with others in favour of an online existence, how our children are losing time for creative play, and losing their ability to manipulate the physical environment. Young children who spend excessive time looking at screens will likely be “impoverished” in the above three areas and—given the rapid brain development in the first three years—are in fact “pruning away circuitry they may need in the future.” media. 2

The Columbia Valley Early Years Coalition is trying to help parents with activities and strategies that will reduce screen time and increase together time. Greta Correll, Columbia Valley Early Years Coordinator, suggests “we all want to find the right balance as we raise our children in this digital age, and juggle work and family responsibilities. We want to encourage parents to

become aware of not only how much screen time is appropriate for themselves and their young children but also how to use screen time with them. We have some great resources we can share with parents to help them learn to limit their children’s screen time and how to manage their own screen behavior that they are modelling for their children”.

The Columbia Valley Early Years Coalition has promoted the healthy development of children aged zero through six since 2006. It’s vision is a community that recognizes and responds to the unique needs of children and their families. Members of this team are from a variety of government and non-profit service agencies. The Coalition is funded by Children First and Success by Six. The Children First Initiative strives to build the capacity of communities to support the healthy growth and development of young children and their families through a comprehensive and integrated service delivery system. Success by Six is a community-based, cross-sectoral partnership of people and organizations that share a common vision-children ready to succeed when they enter school.

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