Students at Beecher Elementary wrap up 'Screen Free Week'
ELMIRA, N.Y. (WENY) -- One local elementary school is helping students reconnect with playtime by disconnecting.
On a rainy Friday morning, one 5th grade class at Beecher Elementary School in Elmira spent what would have been lessons in front of computer monitors playing jump rope, basketball, and just running around.
The gym-time is part of 'Screen Free Week' which was actually started last year by the Computer Lab teacher, to go in-line with the national campaign.
"It's always, nationally, the first week in May so I thought it would be important to have the kids take a break in the computer lab because they're on screens way too much outside of school, so just a little break to do some physical activity," says Technology TA, Alicia Rosemark.
And while the weather kept the kids indoors, teachers used that as a lesson, in-and-of itself.
"We were outside every day besides today, because of the weather, so it was nice to show them that even though, whatever the weather is you can do inside activities. So we had some board games set up, we've been doing a jump-roping contest, so the highest boy and the highest girl for the whole school will get a prize," Rosemark adds.
It's also helping students find face-to-face connections with their classmates.
"We're all talking to each other and if we're learning [in computer lab], it's usually like we can't talk to each other, we have to focus, but now we can just have fun and talk to our friends," says 5th grader, Caitlyn King.
The whole week ends with what's called 'The Smile Mile' where the whole school joins together for a group walk.