Glenville-Emmons to host unplugged event

Published 7:23 pm Wednesday, May 1, 2019

GLENVILLE — Glenville-Emmons High School will host an evening of unplugged activities from 5 to 9 p.m. May 17 at the elementary school.

Glenville-Emmons High School social worker Sheena Possin conceived the idea after attending a workshop a couple years ago.

“The speaker was encouraging providers and parents to participate in a screen-free week to reconnect with their families,” Possin said. “I thought it was a great idea and would make an awesome community event.”

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She said that the Teen Advocate Group at the school, which focuses on a different social issue each quarter, was able to incorporate the event this year under its campaign to encourage the healthy use of technology.

So far this quarter, Freeborn County Sheriff’s Office Sgt. Tim Bennett spoke to the Glenville-Emmons students about internet safety and had an informational meeting for parents. The mock crash performed by National Honor Society students also had a distracted driving component in the crash.

This event is a little different.

“We are hoping with this event to raise awareness about how much technology interferes with our relationships and health and try to encourage parents and children to get off the phone, computer, tablet or TV and have that face time that we are missing,” Possin said. “We also want to provide resources for parents about age-appropriate screen time, safety and activities within the community that are screen-free or unplugged.”

As a social worker, Possin said she knows the negative consequences of children getting too much screen time.

“It is extremely important for students to unplug from their technology,” she said. “Children who have unlimited screen time can struggle with weight issues, behavior problems, dysregulated sleep and have decreased social skills.”

Possin said children and adults can benefit from more face to face interactions from a mental health and physical health standpoint. She also feels parents need to remember their children are watching them. They need to be able to model good positive technology use.

At the beginning of the night, when families register, they will be asked to turn in their cell phones for raffle tickets. Raffle winners will be drawn throughout the night for a variety of prizes. Activities planned include making friendship bracelets and paper airplanes, completing an obstacle course, playing yard games such as Plinko, Jenga and Connect 4, face painting, line dancing and carnival games, among others.

The Freeborn County Sheriff’s Office, Glenville Fire Department, Army National Guard from Albert Lea, Partners in Prevention and The Beach will also be in attendance and Bruno’s Corn Dogs and concessions will be providing food, as well.

Possin encourages parents with children of all ages to attend.