Environmental Education Week has had me thinking even more than usual about Mother Earth and all she has to offer. My thoughts keep wandering to the youth we have the privilege of spending our summers with, specifically, what are they spending their time on outside of camp. Are they reaping the countless benefits spending time in nature provides? Or are they glued to their favorite piece of technology, taking in all the digital world has to offer?
Even better, maybe these brilliant youth have figured out an optimal balance of BOTH green time and screen time.
As an environmental educator dedicated to youth development, it is easy to hope that all of our youth are spending ample time outdoors, embracing their inner naturalist. At camp, we “unplug” from technology, so it seems so simple to live without screen time. Is this a realistic hope for our campers, or even ourselves, to stay “unplugged” all year? Not really. Is it beneficial for kids to spend time outdoors? Absolutely. On that same level, can it be beneficial for kids to enjoy screen time? Absolutely. The educational value technology can provide is undeniable. The key is, as with most things, moderation and a healthy balance of the two.
The Right Mix of Screen Time is a simple article that lays out some general screen time/green time guidelines. Research the benefits of green time. Research the benefits of screen time. Both are contributors to healthy development and can promote a healthy lifestyle.
Happy Environmental Education Week! Know someone who would LOVE to unplug for a couple of weeks this summer? REGISTER them today!