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SESSION 2 FOR S1 Pupils

BACKGROUND

On average young people in the United Kingdom spend same amount of time on screen-based activities as they spend in school. This session provides pupils with an overview of the Be Screen Smart project.  It also provides them with an opportunity to identify screen-free ways they would like to spend their free time while at home or in their neighbourhood.

OBJECTIVES

Pupils Will:

  • Identify screen-free activities they would like to do during their free time.
  • Understand the purpose of the Be Screen Smart project.
  • Discuss the impact too much screen time can have on health & academic performance.

TIME NEEDED

50-60 minutes

GETTING READY

  • Letter for Parent/Guardian
  • Be Screen Smart Pledge Card
  • Facts & Figures for Youth

 Activity Steps with Pupils

  • 1. Ask pupils, “How do you typically spend your free time? What do you do?” Have a volunteer record the activities on the flipchart. Note that there are no wrong answers.
  • 2. Ask pupils, “If you didn’t have electronic games (e.g. Play Station, Gameboy), computer, tablet, smart phone or TV, how would you like to spend your free time around home, with friends or in your neighbourhood?” Ask for a volunteer to record the ideas on the flipchart. (Keep this list as you will need it again during Session III.)
  • 3. Ask pupils, “Do you feel that you’re in school a lot? Did you know that the average Scottish youth spends roughly same amount of time in school and on screens for entertainment use?”
  • 4. Tell pupils that over the next few weeks, they are going to be involved in a project called Be Screen Smart! Explain that this project is basically about their free time and how they’d like to spend it. Add that during this project, they will explore how they spend their free time and be challenged to think of “screen-free” ways to spend their free time. Define “screen-free” activities as those that do not include the TV, computer, tablets, laptops, smart phones or computer games. Note that use of the computer for homework is OK!  
  • 5. Ask pupils if they completed their Screen Time Tracking Form. If not, tell them they’ve got one more chance to do it. Tell the pupils to complete the form before you meet for Session III. (Please check the calendar before setting the date for Session III in order to allow enough time for pupils to track their screen time on two weekdays and one Saturday or Sunday. You’ll need from four to seven days before scheduling Session III.) Share the date of your next session.
  • 6. Split the class in to two groups with one preparing arguments for why too much screen time is good for a young person and their families, and the other group preparing arguments as to why too much screen time is not good for a young person and their families. Allow pupils to prepare for 15 minutes then debate for another 15 minutes. After the debate distribute the Facts & Figures for Youth hand-out. Ask for volunteers to read a few of the facts and then discuss the facts together as a group. Ask pupils to share what they have learned with their parent/guardian and to give their parent/guardian the Be Screen Smart letter & Be Screen Smart Pledge Card which needs to be signed and the tear of slip brought back to class for session III.
  • 7. Break pupils into groups and ask them to use the Facts & Figures for Young People hand-out to write a commercial or advertisement for reducing screen time in order to make more free time to do other fun activities.