Balance Screen Time with Play Time for Healthy Kids

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March 29, 2016 - With so many children getting more screen time than is considered healthy for good emotional and social development, parents learned tonight about the challenges of limiting screen time and techniques to re-engage children in active play. Rana Pishva, doctoral candidate in clinical psychology and clinical intern at Children’s Centre Thunder Bay, addressed over 100 participants at the Building Super Kids event held by Healthy Kids Community Challenge Thunder Bay at the Italian Cultural Centre.

Only 5 per cent of Canadians 5 to 17 years old are getting the recommended 60 minutes of moderate- to vigorous-intensity daily physical activity. Over the last decade, the proportion of kids who play outside after school has dropped by 14 per cent.

“Today's children are growing increasingly attached to screen-based technology. It is where the core of our youth’s social lives and identity are being developed,” says Pishva.

To get children on track towards a healthier future, Pishva advised parents to focus on increasing their off-screen time instead of engaging in power struggles with them around on-screen time.

“Parents are struggling to reengage their children with the outdoors, physical activity, and the family unit,” said Pishva. “But with the proper support, tools and confidence, they can effectively reconnect with their children and disconnect them from the screens.”

The goal of the Building Super Kids Speaker Series is to provide parents with the inspiration and knowledge to make changes that positively impact the health and happiness of their children. For more information on the Building Super Kids Speaker Series and Healthy Kids Community Challenge events, visit healthykidstbay.ca. To get involved in the Healthy Kids Community Challenge please contact the Healthy Kids Community Challenge Coordinator at 625-5962. 

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