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Screen Free Week – May 1-7, 2023

Screen-Free Week is celebrated every year in the first week of May and takes place from May 1 to 7 this year. This week, celebrated all over the world, is an invitation for everyone — children, adults, and entire communities — to switch off completely from staring at screens and take a well-deserved break.

Millions of people participate in Screen-Free Week as part of the initiative to “turn off screens and turn on life.” A growing number of people have been observing Screen-Free Week every year to allow themselves a break away from the digital world. By doing this, they get to experience the wonders of life beyond screens.

History of Screen Free Week

Screen-Free Week is celebrated in the first week of May every year. People who participate in a screen-free week do so to connect with other people and communities, as well as explore the world beyond the digital sphere.

Screen-Free Week involves people switching off their devices and engaging mindfully with the world around them. It is an opportunity for people to exercise their imaginations, explore their neighborhoods, and indulge their curiosity about what and who is around them.

Screen-Free Week began as TV-Turnoff Week to get U.S. children away from their televisions and out into the world around them. People have become increasingly concerned about the lack of physical exercise among children in the U.S. since the advent of television.
Additionally, the organizers of Screen-Free Week recognize the importance of play for children. Play is scientifically proven to be a great way to learn about the world around us and how things work.

With the development of technology, T.V.s aren’t the only screens that people find themselves in front of. Office workers are in front of screens all day as part of their jobs and now almost all recreation has become limited to screens. This means that even when people are off work, they’re watching shows on their computers.

The increasing digitization of our lives has made things more convenient, but it causes its own problems. The blue light of the screen results in insomnia in many people, as the brain believes that it is daylight. Additionally, it has caused a greater disconnection between people and communities. So, Screen-Free Week is an attempt to encourage people to get away from the thrall of their screens and out into the physical reality of their lives.

Screen Free Week timeline

1978
Jerry Mander Encourages Eliminating T.V.

Mander, an activist, and author, writes the book “Four Arguments for the Elimination of Television.”

1994
TV-Turnoff Week Starts

An organization called TV-Free America champions TV-Turnoff Week, which is promoted by magazines like “Adbusters.”

2008
The Week is Renamed

Adbusters renames TV-Turnoff Week to Digital Detox Week since it is evident by now that media is being consumed through more devices than just television.

2010
C.C.F.C Takes Over

TV-Free America, now renamed to Center for Screen Time Awareness, asks Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood (C.C.FC) to take over, and the week is renamed again.

Screen Free Week FAQs

What is the meaning of screen-free?

Screen-free means staying off screens like T.V.s, computers, and gaming consoles.

How do you commit to a screen-free week?

The best strategy is to put rules into place and ensure that all members of the family follow them. Put all phones, gaming consoles, and laptops away so that you can’t be tempted to check your social media.

What is the maximum amount of screen time for kids?

No more than two hours of screen time per day for kids between six to eight years.

Screen Free Week Activities

  1. Go camping with your family

    Get as far away from your screens as physically possible by going camping with your family or friends. Take some time to enjoy the great outdoors!

  2. Pick up a book

    We all have books we’ve been meaning to get around to reading. Screen-Free Week is a great time to settle in and finally read them.

  3. Try a new hobby

    Screens prevent us from picking up things that might interest us. If you’ve been wanting to take up knitting, painting, woodworking, or anything else, this is a great time to start.

5 Interesting Facts About Screen Time

  1. The kids aren’t alright

    Research concludes that today’s children spend twice as much time in front of screens than they do playing outside.

  2. The C.C.F.C. has a new name

    The host of Screen-Free Week, Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood (C.C.F.C), is now known as Fairplay.

  3. Screen time can cause body aches

    A growing number of people report neck and shoulder pain as a result of staring at screens all day.

  4. Too much screen time affects attention

    Attention spans are growing shorter every year and screen time is likely to blame for it.

  5. Empathy can be impaired

    If people spend too much time watching T.V., or working in front of their screens, their ability to empathize and connect with other people gets affected.

Why We Love Screen Free Week

  1. We want a break from screens

    Screen-Free Week offers everyone a great opportunity to get away from screens and rest our eyes and our minds. It’s also a chance to reconnect with the outside world.

  2. We want kids to play outside

    Children typically spend more time in front of screens than they do in school. We think it’s important to have a week set aside to create healthy habits, like playing outside.

  3. We want to get our hands dirty

    Technology is convenient, but we miss working with our hands. Screen-Free Week is a great way to get into gardening, baking, sewing, and other hobbies.

Screen Free Week dates

YearDateDay
2022May 2Monday
2023May 1Monday
2024May 6Monday
2025May 5Monday
2026May 4Monday
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