An order of old-fashioned entertainment hold the commercials - might not sound like much fun to most kids, but Sunset View Elementary students have big plans for their week without television.
"I'm going to make crafts," said Michelle Ashton, a sixth-grader.The Haws family is going to get library cards, according to Millie Haws, the mother of nine children, four of which attend Sunset View.
Other students plan to make paper airplanes or geodome forts. Yet others are looking forward to neighborhood "kick the can" games.
It's all part of the school's "No TV Week," aimed at stimulating creativity by first turning off the television. Students who go without TV for a week will be entered in drawings for various prizes.
"We are not saying they should throw TV out, but they should be wise and use it as a tool to enhance their life, not run their life," said David Johansen, a teacher at the school and organizer of the week's activity.
To help students replace TV entertainment, the school held a family creativity night Monday. Classes were held to teach activities such as juggling, story telling, dog sledding, origame (paper folding), hair styling, crafts and secret codes.
"We want to help them discover their own creativity and give them alternatives to watching television."
Johansen said a school survey found that the average Sunset View student watches television 22 to 25 hours a week.
"It is my personal view that we are stopping creativity in kids' lives by the amount of TV they watch," he said. "They would rather do something easy than fun."
He said creative activities allow the children to tap into their own potential.
"Children and their parents have become too dependent on television, and it doesn't stretch their minds. We want to encourage them to stop watching for one week - just long enough to learn what fun creative play can be."
Students will keep a daily journal of activities and enter their name for a drawing every day they go without TV.
Carousel Ice Cream parlor has agreed to give a root beer float to every student who goes without TV for a day. Drawings will also be held for restaurant certificates and watches.
"By the end of the week we hope they will have discovered some new hobbies or interests and that parents will take an increasing interest in diversifying the activities of their children," Johansen said.
Luke Haws, a fourth-grader, said it will be hard to give up TV, especially since he is off-track at the year-round school and spends all his time at home. "I was going to play Nintendo (Monday), but I remembered and turned it off."
Guiselle Ashton, the mother of three students at Sunset View, said: "We checked out some books from the library and decided to work on Easter projects. We plan on walking the dog more and visiting friends. We decided to make this a family thing. It wouldn't be fair for us to watch if they couldn't."