Play & Activity

February 2019

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A new report out today shows for the fi rst time a strong link between recreational screen time and children's inactivity, with children choosing to spend hours indoors and on screens instead of playing outside. The report released by the Association of Play Industries - A Movement for Movement – reveals that children have never moved so little and points to substantial evidence Elba Park is a site playing a lead role in The Land Trust's education work and was awarded Land Trust Education Site of the Year after delivering activities to nearly 1,000 school children over the last 12 months. Based in Sunderland the team at Elba have built excellent working relationships with local schools which has seen children enjoy activities such as geocaching, pond dipping, m e a d o w s w e e p s , c r a f t s , surveys and identification, bulb and tree planting and heritage activities. The Daily Mile is aiming to increase children's activity levels as Sport England invests £1.5 million of National Lottery money in the groundbreaking scheme. Sport England recently published its fi rst Active Lives Children and Young People report, which showed that more than 2.3 million children do fewer than 30 minutes of physical activity a day. This new partnership Green spaces become outdoor learning and training venues Funding to help children get active that screens are a key reason. There appears to be a 'rapid and dramatic' change from o u t d o o r t o i n d o o r t i m e , with a 50 per cent increase in children's discretionary screen time (DST) in less than a decade. By the age of eight, the average child will have spent one full year sitting in front of a screen. The report's author, Dr Aric Sigman, a health education S t u d e n t s f r o m P o r t l a n d Academy, a school for young people with special educational needs and disability, attend weekly sessions at the site with with The Daily Mile will fund the recruitment of national and local coordinators to support and encourage more schools in England to sign up – with a vision of helping all 20,000 primary schools in the country to take part in an active mile a day. A third of children in England do fewer than 30 minutes of physical activity a day. Sport England lecturer and leading expert on the effects of recreational screen time on children, says action is urgently required. "This report confirms what most parents already know, that discretionary screen time is their children's main activity. Whether it's watching TV, playing games on laptops and iPads or spending time on social media, recreational screen time is occupying hours post-16 students undertaking the Duke of Edinburgh award. The Land Trust Campaign calls for two-hour screen time guideline of their day, and has replaced outdoor play. P a r e n t s a r e l o o k i n g f o r support and guidance on how to go back-to-basics to limit discretionary screen time and get their children outdoors and playing again. The introduction of a two-hour limit for daily recreational screen time will offer specifi c advice to parents and with the support of government, we can start to tackle the increasing screen time issue." The Association of Play Industries Chair, Mark Hardy, says: "Unless the government takes steps to help parents reduce children's discretionary screen time, current attempts to tackle childhood obesity and poor mental health are likely to fail. "At the same time, we also need urgent investment in free- to-use outdoor play facilities, particularly in deprived areas where such facilities can have the greatest impact. Our recent Nowhere To Play report highlights the alarming decline in playgrounds in recent years." The Association of Play Industries' campaign is focussed on two main asks, calling upon the government to: issue an offi cial recommendation of two hours discretionary screen time per day for children; and invest in outdoor play provision, especially in deprived areas, to reverse the decline in playgrounds. Association of Play Industries L a n d s c a p e & A m e n i t y w w w. l a n d s c a p e a n d a m e n i t y. c o m February 2019 Latest news & case studies Wicksteed New outdoor gyms to get residents healthy Page 19 Weedingtech The friendly solution to weed control Page 20 API A Movement for Movement begins Page 19

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