It’s difficult right now to screen less, but students can learn to screen well. All 970 students will benefit as NJH implements a deliberate culture of digital health and wellness as part of SEL (social emotional learning) during students’ advisory periods. HEF is funding a partnership with LiveMore ScreenLess, a Minnesota nonprofit that “promotes digital wellbeing for and with young people through a collaborative and comprehensive community approach”. LiveMore will use research and data to promote the balanced and intentional use of technology.
Beginning by listening and assessing the current digital health, attitudes, and awareness of NJH students and staff through an optional, online anonymous survey, LiveMore will pinpoint how student learning and mental health are affected by screen time. The next step is to provide engaging education instruction for creating life balance and improved communication. LiveMore will help NJH begin to develop a school policy with and for students regarding digital health and wellness, while helping students feel more connected to their school community. LiveMore will develop three Digital Wellbeing 15-20 minute education sessions, incorporating social emotional learning principles and engaging, highly interactive, age-specific activities. Sessions will provide info, tips, resources for staff and students. A follow-up survey will help understand the impact of the new learning, any changes in screen time usage, and increased awareness of the impact of digital media on adolescent health. Train the Trainer is also part of this grant; NJH staff will be able to practice, model, and deliver these tools, activities and strategies to future NJH students, promoting digital wellbeing to the whole school.
LiveMore ScreenLess is supported by international and national research in the belief that misuse and overuse of screens is a substantive factor to the rise in teens’ mental health issues. Most young people spend 7+ hours per day on their screens, not including schoolwork.
North Junior High
Submitter: Ann Salzer