What happens when teenagers go from sending 100 or more texts per day to zero overnight? When they go from using electronic media for eight or more hours a day to none overnight?
The Tech Timeout Academic Challenge is urging middle- and high-school students to find out by disconnecting for a few days from the digital world – no cell phones, no social media – to reflect on their dependence on technology.
Foresters, a life insurance provider, and Twisted Scholar, a Seattle-based production company, have teamed up to provide free kits to the first 1,000 schools requesting them at TechTimeout.com/AcademicChallenge. The kits will provide teachers with the tools to organize a challenge at their school. The site also has videos describing how others are meeting the challenge.
“We’re not asking anyone to give up all of their electronic devices and live tech-free forever,” Marty Riemer, a founder of Twisted Scholar, said in a press release about the program. “We know how important technology is to our society, but there’s a big difference between using it and overusing it…By taking the Tech Timeout Academic Challenge, we want kids to realize how important it is to unplug for a while before this dependence on devices carries over into their adult lives.”