Girl watching TVCanadian kids don’t play as much as they used to for a lot of reasons, and ParticipACTION’s new national campaign takes on one very real barrier to play—the constant lure of screens.

In today’s culture of ‘getting things done’ the screen may seem like an easy solution, but video games, television, computers and smartphones have replaced time spent running, playing and being active outdoors.  In fact, Canadian kids spend an average of [highlight]seven hours and 48 minutes a day in front screens[/highlight]. Over the course of a week that is more time than their parents spend at work! The Canadian Physical Activity Guidelines recommend that kids between the ages of 5-17 years old should get at least 60 minutes of moderate to vigorous-intensity physical activity EVERY day. However, 95% of Canadian kids don’t meet these guidelines. Active play offers a great solution to help our kids learn to love and enjoy physical activity, away from screeens—in a way that is their own.

The ‘Make Room for Play’ campaign launched in January, and is a call to Canadian families to limit screen time and make more room for active play. There is a series of 30 second videos that grab parents’ attention and makes them think about their own family’s screen time habits at the cost of active play time.

And, for those that need it, we want to help! Even though our videos urge you not to visit our website, and to go outside and play—if you need tips or ideas on how to get started—please visit There are a multitude of useful tips you can use to make some changes in your family routine.

4 Useful Resources to Help Reduce Your Child's Daily Screen Time

  1. Try out our Cold Weather Activity Checklist
  2. Print and use our Screen Time Log to track how much time you could better spend being active!
  3. Read our Tips for kids in different age groups (early years, ages 5-12 or teens)
  4. Visit our blog for some practical guidance and how-to’s.

We all need to play a part in encouraging Canada’s kids to be as active as possible – to make room for play by turning screen time into real, active play!

And, we’d love to see your active play success stories, and hear your opinion on Make Room For Play. Join the conversation with us on social using the hashtag #MakeRoomForPlay.


participaction logoAbout ParticipACTION

Let’s get moving. It’s a simple message ParticipACTION is bringing to Canadians across this country. Moving more is the key to creating a Canada that is happier and healthier. Luckily, we live in a wonderful place where the opportunity to get moving is right at our doorstep, at home, in our local communities, and beyond. We want to change minds about what it means to be physically active. Imagine a country where physical activity is a vital part of every day life, and not one more item to check off a to do list. Our goal is to create a nation where daily physical activity is not only a priority, but also second nature – as natural as child’s play. And it starts with taking time to just move more. Bringing Canadians together and uniting them under the banner of creating a nation where physical activity is a vital part of everyday life – that is the future ParticipACTION envisions. And every step of the way, ParticipACTION will be there for you – we are your partner, your inspiration, your coach who never lets you doubt that you can do it. Come on, Canada. Let’s get moving.

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