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Less Planning, More Unplugging – Streamline Your Event + Enjoy More Screen-Free Time

In a world where screens are an integral part of our daily lives, it's vital to remember the importance of disconnecting and engaging in real-life experiences. That's where the concept of an Unplug-A-Thon comes into play, especially within our school communities.

This guide is designed for school parent groups looking to encourage healthy screen-time habits and raise funds in a meaningful way. By embracing the practice of unplugging, we can offer our families a refreshing break from digital devices by tracking "unplug" activities and inviting the community to support this movement through their donations.

What is an Unplug-A-Thon?

An Unplug-A-Thon is an event aimed at reducing screen time and promoting engagement in offline activities. It's a designated period when participants track non-screen activities and friends and family donate in support of the school and this global movement ot unplug. This initiative not only supports mental and physical well-being but also serves as a creative fundraising opportunity for schools and organizations. By participating in an Unplug-A-Thon, individuals and families commit to reconnecting with the world around them, away from the digital noise, through activities like hiking, cooking, playing board games, crafting, and so much more!

How It Works
Organizing an Unplug-A-Thon involves a few key steps:

  • Set a Date and Duration: Choose a time frame for your Unplug-A-Thon, ranging from a single day to an entire month, depending on your school's commitment level. Either way, make sure to keep your donation period open for at least a few weeks to meet your fundraising goal. 
  • Registration: Participants register for the event, often through a platform like FundHub, which can track their offline activity and manage donations, incentives, and promotions.
  • Activity Tracking: Utilize online counters or tracking sheets to record the time spent in non-screen activities. This can be self-reported or verified through various creative means, such as digit detox journals reviewed by the teacher, activity punch cards or bingo sheets, and photo journals to visually capture screen-free fun!
  • Fundraising: Encourage participants to gather donations to support their commitment to unplug or the number of offline hours logged.
  • Celebration and Recognition: Conclude the event with a celebration of the collective achievements and recognize top achievers - at the individual, class, and school level!


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Screen-Free Activity Ideas + Categories

Outdoor Adventures

  • Nature Scavenger Hunts: Create a list of natural items for participants to find, encouraging exploration and observation skills. Tailor the list to your local environment, including things like specific leaves, rocks, or wildlife.
  • Guided Nature Walks: Partner with a local naturalist or park ranger to lead educational walks, teaching participants about local flora, fauna, and ecosystems.
  • Family Bike Rides: Organize a community bike ride with different routes for varying skill levels. Include pit stops with refreshments and information about the local area.
  • Outdoor Game Tournaments: Set up classic games like capture the flag, relay races, or obstacle courses in a local park or at your school for a day of family-friendly competition.

Creative Workshops

  • Art in the Park: Host an outdoor art session where students can draw, paint, or play with clay or kinetic sand.

  • Music and Movement: Organize a drum circle or dance workshop in the gym.

  • DIY Craft Stations: Set up stations with different craft activities, such as bracelet making, pottery, or woodworking, allowing participants to hop from one to another. 

Community Service

  • School Grounds Clean-Up: Organize a day dedicated to cleaning up the school, followed by a group picnic to celebrate the hard work.
  • Gardening for Good: Partner with a local community garden or start one on the school grounds, inviting families to plant and tend to vegetables that can be donated to food banks or used in the cafeteria.
  • Intergenerational Projects: Collaborate with a local senior center to pair up participants with seniors for storytelling, crafts, or other shared activities.
  • Animal Shelter Assistance: Arrange for groups to volunteer at local animal shelters, helping with care, play, and maintenance tasks. Especially good for middle or high schools where students may need to acquire volunteer hours.

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Unplug-A-Thon Incentives

Personalized Recognition

  • Digital Detox Champions: Create special titles or awards for individuals or families who go above and beyond in their unplugging efforts, such as "Digital Detox Champion" or "Unplug Master."
  • Achievement Badges: Design virtual or physical badges for different milestones or activities completed during the Unplug-A-Thon, such as "Outdoor Explorer" for participating in a certain number of outdoor activities or "Book Worm" for hours spent reading.

Prize Draws

  • Weekly Challenges: Introduce weekly challenges with smaller prize draws to keep the excitement going throughout the Unplug-A-Thon. Challenges can be themed around different activities like creativity, fitness, or community service.
  • Social Media Shares: For participants willing to briefly reconnect online, encourage sharing of their Student Fundraising Webpages and share about their unplugged experiences on social media with a link for friends and family to donate. FundHub makes this super easy!

Special Experiences

  • Adventure Day with Educators: Offer a day of adventure with favorite teachers or school staff, where winners can choose activities like hiking, museum visits, or a fun educational trip, adhering to the unplugging theme.

  • Local Talent Workshops: Arrange workshops or private sessions with local artists, chefs, athletes, or other local sponsors for winners to learn new skills or hobbies directly from experts in the community.

Global Day of Unplugging and FundHub: A Powerful Partnership

Our partnership with Global Day of Unplugging empowers schools, teams, and organizations to host impactful Unplug-A-Thon fundraisers, blending the joy of unplugging with the fulfillment of contributing to a cause. Those interested in supporting the awareness campaign can join HERE.

School Example: Willow Tree's Screen-Free Read-A-Thon

Willow Tree's initiative is a prime example of a successful Unplug-A-Thon. During September, the "Friends of Willow Tree" encouraged families to embrace a screen-free lifestyle and immerse themselves in reading. This not only promoted literacy but also fostered family bonding. By tracking reading minutes through FundHub, the event made participation easy and engaging!

An Unplug-A-Thon offers a unique opportunity to step away from our screens and reconnect with the world and people around us!

With FundHub, embrace the freedom of unplugging while effortlessly managing your event from anywhere. Whether you're on a hike, at the zoo, or bouncing at a trampoline park, our mobile platform ensures you can oversee every aspect of your event right from your phone. Create engaging, personalized webpages for each participating group, showcasing photos, setting goals, and sharing heartfelt messages. Our easy-to-use activity counter allows you to track unplugging activities, offering real-time updates for individuals, classrooms, and the whole school. FundHub is dedicated to ensuring your event is not only impactful but also FUN, giving you the flexibility to manage it on the go.



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