The 2:1 Club - Information
The basic goal of the 2:1 Club is to teach children that technology is an earned privilege, as opposed to an expected daily occurrence. Statistics show that children watch between 2-4 hours of television each night. If you add other technology to this, half of a child's day may be exposed to some form of technology, therefore engaging the child in less physical activity.
Due to the rise in the childhood obesity statistics, a major concern for parents is the amount of sedentary time their children endure throughout the day. They may be sitting down while watching TV, playing video games, listening to music, playing on the computer, or talking on their cell phone. Some type of happy medium or compromise much take place to combat this problem.
"An estimated 9.2 million children and adolescents ages 6–19 were considered overweight or obese. According to the Surgeon General, 43% of adolescents watch more than two hours of television each day."
(American Heart Association, 2006)
Introducing 2 for 1
The principle behind the 2:1 club is not to completely take technology away from children, but to limit it. Very young children should not have the luxury of using technology so freely. It should be earned through physical activity. For every 2 minutes of physical activity a child performs, they earn 1 minute of technology time. This way, you are not taking away technology 'cold turkey,' rather, limiting the amount of time the children use it. For example, if a child rides their bike for an hour, they can play on their video game system for 30 minutes.
A basic contract between parent and child can be found on the downloads page. It is obvious a parent could not be with their children 24/7, so the honor system will come into play here. This means, you will have to trust your children somewhat to follow the rules while you are not around. Is this the 'end all' when it comes to the obesity epidemic facing the youth of the world? No, but it's a small start!
Necessity, not Luxury
There are some types of technology, of course, that does not need to be earned. Using a cell phone to bail a child out of trouble, or using a computer for homework would not constitute 'play' time. The children should understand the difference between 'necessity' technology time, and 'luxury' technology time. Necessity is needed for survival or to better oneself, while luxury is purely pleasure or play time.