1:00 PM13:00

Tech, Talk, Tacos

They’re growing up and headed to middle school! It’s an exciting time with lots of changes.

We’re putting together a casual roundtable exclusively for parents of rising 6th graders to talk strategy for the transition to middle school, specifically when it comes to managing technology.  Homework is generally online. Kids are free to switch buses without a note, so communication home becomes important. Parents are no longer dictating their social lives organizing play dates because the kids are doing it on their own.  How do we help our kids manage it all?

Let’s taco ‘bout it.

*The chips and guac on us!  The margaritas aren’t. Food and drinks available for purchase. Taco’s highly encouraged. Event is free, but please RSVP to so we can save you a seat!

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to May 5

Screen-Free Week

Concord Promise and Turning Life On are psyched to partner with many local organizations to help keep kids busy over Screen-Free Week (SFW) and beyond.

What is Screen-Free Week? From April 29-May 5, kids and families are encouraged to unplug and avoid using screens except for school-related work.

Why? A healthy childhood depends on a surprising thing: play! Through creative play, kids explore their physical world, build their curiosity, and expand their imaginations. But often, time spent on ad-supported screens displaces the kind of creative play kids need to thrive.

During Screen-Free Week, kids and families can unplug and reconnect with the world around them. An hour that was once dedicated to TV can become an hour of make-believe, art, reading, or enjoying nature. Both parents and kids can use this week to reconsider the value of screen-based entertainment in their lives and establish year-round screen-free habits.

SFW gives families and communities an opportunity to come together and connect with each other. 

Who’s in? Our partners include The Toy Shop of Concord, Be Well Be Here, Gymnastics Academy of Boston, The Concord Museum, Discovery Museum, the Concord Free Library and deCordova Museum.

What can you expect? Events, discounted or free admission, talks and get togethers.

Screen-Free Events over SFW:

As always, we are psyched to partner with the Toy Shop of Concord who will be awarding Concord Elementary Students who stay screen-free with a $5 off toward $10 purchase. Click here for the form and rules.

Sunday, 4/28 from 1-4:30pm - Little Women 150th Anniversary Celebration at Alcott Orchard House. Outdoor celebration is free. For more information, visit the Alcott Orchard House website.

Tuesday, from 4/30 10-10:30 - Join us for songs, stories, rhymes, and play at the Fowler Library. This interactive program is perfect for busy families and will help develop the early literacy skills that your child needs. CONTACT: Stephanie Rivera  or 978-318-3350

Tuesday, 4/30 from 10-11am - Dress your Stuffed Animal at the Discovery Museum. Free with admission. Learn more on the Discovery Museum website.

Wednesday, 5/1 from 11:45-12:45pm - Free GAB Preschool Open Gym / Play. To register, click here.

Friday, 5/3 from 7-8:30pm - Free GAB Friday Night Open Gym. Registration required. To register, click here.

Saturday, 5/4 from 10-12pm - The Concord Museum has developed a program just for SFW! Slow-down and consider the world around you, notice overlooked details, and make connections.  Journaling can be your family’s invitation to creative expression, new thoughts, and broader perspectives. For more information and to register, visit the Concord Museum Website.

Saturday, 5/4 from 2-3:30pm - The Concord Free Public Library. As human beings, we all need time for free, unscheduled moments. What happens to our bodies and minds when we do or don’t experience them? How can we make room for free time in our busy lives? Join Be Well Be Here founder, Lara Wilson, to discuss simple ways to tap into Free Time: The Source of Your Force. Try some creative games and mindful wellness practices that honor your way in the world, relieve anxiety, and lead to confident self-expression. Learn how these methods of accessing your flow state – or “the zone” – boosts the force that already exists within you. Grade 7-10. Click here to register.

Sunday, 5/4 from 1-4pm - $10/person, $20/family ($15 for materials) - Family Nature Skills Festival at the Umbrella. Spend the afternoon learning to start a fire by friction, whittle sticks, make crafts and tools with natural materials. Learn how to see the forest through an animal’s eyes and move with stealth; listen to and identify birds; and learn about wild edibles. To register, visit the Umbrella website.

Events added and updated regularly. Stay tuned as we finalize details but mark your calendar!

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9:00 AM09:00

Keeping Tech in Check with Mindful Wellness

Join Concord non-profit founders, Lara Wilson of Be Well Be Here and Adrienne Principe of Concord Promise, on a journey to discover how mindful wellness can help our children (and us) manage technology for healthier lives. Today’s technology is designed to demand our attention nearly 24-hours a day, 7-days a week. Whether your child is engaging with smartphones, social media or gaming, developing the skills necessary to keep tech in check can be challenging. The pull of technology also affects our relationships, our productivity, and our children’s abilities to study and learn. Together, we will discuss current findings in human development research (including neurobiology and psychology), and our own life experiences to understand why it’s so hard to disconnect. Lara and Adrienne will offer real strategies that you and your children can experiment with to promote healthier relationships with technology for a happier, fuller life. 

Space is limited, please RSVP by visiting Keeping Tech in Check or contact Lara at 978-203-2825 or

Adrienne Principe is co-founder of Concord Promise, a local organization committed to supporting parents through partnerships and education in an effort to make smartphones in middle school the exception, not the rule. She is also founder of Turning Life On (TLO). TLO, an expansion and extension of Concord Promise, seeks to unite, inform and empower community members who care about healthy technology use in Concord and beyond.

A writer, teacher and meditator for over thirty years, Lara Wilson founded Concord's non-profit mindful wellness collaborative, Be Well Be Here, where all are welcome to co-create experiential integration practices for well-being. Following an 18-month cancer journey, Lara developed and taught mindfulness curricula in both public and private schools in the northeast and south. She has worked mindfully with cancer patients, students with learning issues, young athletes, disabled individuals, architects, celebrated authors, the elderly, medical professionals, bankers, CEOs, artists and strangers willing to give practice a try. Lara holds a master's degree in English & American Literature, a Graduate Certificate in Mindfulness Studies, and certification in restorative yoga and Reiki Level II. She has studied qi gong with various instructors, including Master Yang Yang, a clinical specialist at Memorial Sloane-Kettering Cancer Center in NYC. Lara’s experiences with integrative healing have been included in medical case studies, and were featured in an article about cancer, connection and community in the American Journal of Lifestyle Medicine written by a core faculty member of the Center for Mind-Body Medicine. 

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7:00 PM19:00

How to Make Devices Not Divisive: A Screen-Time Workshop

From the Center for Parents and Teachers:

Internationally renowned educator and author Kim John Payne, M.Ed will discuss how to maintain loving limits and discipline around screen-time and media; how to help our kids build good judgment so they do not become overwhelmed with media; strategies to help them navigate the peer-pressure and the status symbol of devices.

Free and open to all adults!

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3:30 PM15:30

Disrupting the Progression from Early Screen Use to Screen Addiction


Most conversations about children and screen time focus on a particular age-range, such as young children, tweens, or teens. This webinar will connect the dots between early excessive screen use and youth media addiction. Join experts Cris Rowan, occupational therapist and founder of Zone’in programs, and Hilarie Cash, Ph.D., founder and Director of reSTART Internet Addiction Recovery program, as they provide specific, practical, early interventions that prevent children’s screen use from impacting their future. They relate stories told by children of all ages about how unrestricted screen time and media content shaped their relationships, education and opportunities.

Cris Rowan, BScBi, BScOT, SIPT Cris Rowan is a pediatric occupational therapist, biologist, speaker, and author of “Virtual Child.” She is passionate about changing the ways in which children use technology. Cris’s concept of Balanced Technology Management urges more engagement in four critical factors for development and learning: movement, touch, human connection, and nature.

Hilarie Cash is Chief Clinical Officer and co-founder of reSTART Internet/Computer Addiction Services and co-developer of reSTART's Video Game and Internet Treatment Program. Hilarie is a speaker, teacher, and author and has appeared, among other places, on ABC News, CNN, NPR, PBS, the BBC, and in print in the Seattle Times, U.S.A. Today, U.S. News and World Report, and the New York Times.

This webinar WILL be recorded. Please register to receive a link to the recording when it is posted.


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6:30 PM18:30

Fenn Speaks: Jill Walsh, PhD, Social Media and Wellness Consultant

Fenn Speaks is a speaker and film series hosted by the Fenn School every year. This year we will delve into the topics of screentime, navigating the online world safely, and children anxiety that comes with today's pressures in school and at home. We hope that you will join us at Fenn this fall to hear about and discuss these important topics.

We will post additional information as it is available. 

To learn more about Fenn's Community Speaker Seriese, click here: Fenn School Events.

To learn more about Dr. Walsh, click here: Dr. Jill Walsh

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7:00 PM19:00

Fenn Speaks: Michael G. Thompson, PhD

Fenn Speaks is a speaker and film series hosted by the Fenn School every year. This year we will delve into the topics of screentime, navigating the online world safely, and children anxiety that comes with today's pressures in school and at home. We hope that you will join us at Fenn this fall to hear about and discuss these important topics.

We will post additional information about this event when available. 

To learn more about this event and other Fenn events, click here: Fenn School Events.

To learn more about Dr. Michael Thompson, click here: Michael G. Thompson, PhD

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7:30 PM19:30

Technology and Young Children with Nancy Carlsson-Paige

In this webinar based on her keynote at the Children's Screen Time Action Network conference, Concord Promise partner Dr. Nancy Carlsson-Paige will offer a full exploration of how and why screens interfere with developmental milestones crucial to children’s well-being. Using specific, real-life examples, Dr. Carlsson-Paige illustrates the difference between what children “learn” from screens and what they learn through physical, hands-on activities. Dr. Carlsson-Paige’s keynote was one of the most well-received sessions at the conference. Believe us when we say this is a can’t-miss!

For more information, see her website.

To register, click here.

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9:30 AM09:30

Concord Promise Parent Roundtable

Please join Concord Promise for our first Parent Roundtable of the school year. Let’s get together and talk about how we’re managing phones and screens for our kids. Parents need to connect with each other to share strategies - we can be such a great resource and source of advice and support. 

Plus, coffee. We all need coffee. 

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7:00 PM19:00

Reclaiming Childhood in a Digital Age

Featuring: Concord Promise Partner, Richard Freed, author of Wired Child: Reclaiming Childhood in a Digital Age
Date: Wednesday, October 17, 2018
Time: 7:00 p.m.
Cost: $10 at the door, general admission, cash or check
Co-sponsored by: Waldorf PCA and Lexington Community Education

Children and teens urgently need our help navigating today’s digital landscape of video games, social media, and smartphones—which many kids just can’t put down. Join Dr. Richard Freed as he explains why technology poses the risk of addiction, how important family is for kids in resisting these pressures, and how to raise happy, healthy children in the digital age.

Richard Freed, Ph.D., is a child and adolescent psychologist and a leading authority on raising children in the digital age. Dr. Freed is the author of the book Wired Child: Reclaiming Childhood in a Digital Age, and his insights have been featured in The New York Times, Medium, The Atlantic, on NPR, and other media platforms. He speaks internationally to parents, teachers, and health care providers on how to promote children’s well-being in this age of machines.

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7:30 PM19:30

Celling Your Soul Virtual Film Screening with filmmaker Joni Siani

Through the story of real students participating in a ‘digital cleanse,’ Joni Siani’s award-winning Celling Your Soul explores what it means for young people to connect online and IRL. Whether you’re an educator, a student, or a parent, the film offers tools to address teen anxiety, smart phone use, and challenging conversations around building relationships in a digital age. A live Q&A with the filmmaker will follow the screening.  

Joni is an active Concord Promise partner. Her experience as a parent, college professor and researcher guide her straight-forward and well-developed film.

For more information, visit the No App for Life website

Register today:

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6:30 PM18:30

Campaign for a Commercial Free Childhood - Raising Healthy Children in a Commercialized World

Raising Healthy Children in a Commercialized World
Thursday, September 27, 2018
6:30-8:30 PM
2 Old Pickard Lane
Littleton, MA

Click here to register.

Commercialism is a factor in many of the key problems facing children today, including obesity, eating disorders, increased materialism, excessive media use, and the erosion of creative play. Marketing is so ubiquitous that protecting children from its harmful effects can seem overwhelming or even impossible. Discovery Museum and Oak Meadow School present an evening with Josh Golin, who will describe what we can do – as parents and communities – to give children the commercial‐free time and space they need in order to thrive.

Josh is the Executive Director of the Campaign for a Commercial‐Free Childhood, which advocates for the rights of children to grow up – and parents to raise them – without being undermined by commercial interests. Josh’s media appearances include Today, NPR, Fox & Friends, and NBC Nightly News, and he has been quoted in hundreds of publications, including The New York Times, The Washington Post, and USA Today. His writings about the commercialization of childhood have appeared in a wide range of outlets.

This event is free and open to the public. Click here to register.
6:30-7:00 p.m. – Reception with complimentary refreshments and hors d’oeuvres.
Professional Development Certificates for Continuing Education Hours available for $18 per individual.

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7:30 PM19:30

Children's Screen Time Action Network - Screen Schooled with Matt Miles and Joe Clement

Schools are under pressure to introduce corporate-branded, screen-based technology into their classrooms, and students are paying the price. Veteran teachers Matt Miles and Joe Clement have seen the impact first-hand – and they’ve done something about it. In this webinar, they offer strategies for teachers and parents to thoughtfully steer education away from technological hype and back to what matters: supporting students’ full development.  

Concord Promise partners Matt Miles and Joe Clement are entertaining to listen to. They also speak from experience as veteran teachers and are well informed. 

For more information, visit the Screen Schooled website.

Register in advance for this webinar:

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9:30 AM09:30

Coffee and Conversation

We're launching something new!

Please join us on May 22 at 9:30 a.m. at Concord Recreation in the Multi-Purpose Room at the Hunt Gym just to talk. No speakers, no experts... just us. Parents. Figuring it out together.

Let's talk about our concerns about smartphones and social media apps. Maybe some of you aren't concerned. Let's talk about that, too.

Oh, and coffee. There will be coffee. Because, obviously.

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6:30 PM18:30


April 2 at 6:30pm - Nashoba Brooks School, 200 Strawberry Hill Rd, Concord - Open to the Public

As children spend more and more time with technology, they are becoming “digitally socialized” - creating their identities online, texting instead of talking, building relationships on social media instead of through face-to-face human interaction. This is a major shift in the way we communicate. At this event, we will explore how research findings and experience are changing the way we think about and use technology. Parents will have an opportunity to ask questions and learn more about how we can embrace technology while also promoting the mental health of our children. Please join us!

Panelists include:

Elizabeth Englander, PhD, Director, Massachusetts Aggression Reduction Center, Professor of Psychology, will discuss new research findings on cell phone use in young children.

Danielle Heard, Head of School, Nashoba Brooks Schools, will share how educators are navigating the rapidly-changing tech world and how schools can create innovative policy and practices.

Sharon Maxwell, PhD, Author, will share information and practical tips for raising kids with human values in the digital world.  

Irene Todd, Concord parent of four, will share her personal parenting perspective of raising children with smartphones.

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