Technology is a wonderful thing and enhances our lives in many ways, however, there’s a growing feeling that as a society we need to balance when and how much we use it. From texting while driving, checking phones through the night, restaurants full of people staring at screens while they ignore each other and children glued to screens instead of reading or playing out. It’s all having a direct impact on health and interpersonal relationships.

To combat this, a special day across North Tyneside took place to raise awareness of the negative effects of overuse and addiction to electronic devices, ‘North Tyneside Unplugged’. On Thursday 7th December over 40 schools, 30 businesses and thousands of families all switched off for the day.

Please direct any enquires regarding NT Unplugged to teachictnt@ntlp.org.uk

To help with our continued research into the subject please take a minute to complete our short feedback form and tell us how going unplugged was for you.

What people said about NT Unplugged:

"A brilliant day, really well-received by parents, staff and students. Great resources and really well marketed. Loved it!"

"I thought (the resources provided) were really high quality, informative and clear.  It’s certainly made me think and reflect on my usage - and judging by the students’ reaction to the assembly (an entirely unsolicited round of applause!), it’s made them think as well."

"Our school thought that this was an extremely worthwhile thing to do - for us as a staff but also for our whole school community."

"I spoke to so many more people (on the Unplugged day). I spoke to pupils about how difficult we found it and why which I think is very important to highlight. I learnt a new skill in the time I couldn’t work so gave myself a proper lunch break."

"(There was) much more conversation between me and my children. We did arts and crafts and had dinner together without any interference. It was great!"

"I've realised that it's MY usage as an adult that is problematic at times!"

"The talk from Dr Martin Lee at Cullercoats Primary about the effects of devices on children was shocking. I think this should be rolled out to all parents and it should be part of the primary and secondary curriculum to inform children of these effects."

"I think this should be done at least every 6 months by the school to reinforce these valuable messages."

Wondering how you could cut down on your phone usage?  Here's three top tips that are easy changes to make.

meals2
alerts
bed

Resources

We have prepared a collection of free resources for you to use in your school and with the families of your school. They can be used however you like; in the build up to your unplugged day or on the day itself. Click on the links below to view the resources provided.

All resources are in Google Docs format. However, everything can be downloaded for offline access and editing as Word, Powerpoint or PDF documents.

  1. Open the resource kits below
  2. Click the links to open each resource
  3. When the resources open, go to the 'File' menu
  4. Choose 'Download as' and select the format of your choice.

No Phone Zone

npz-wp-logo
martin-lee-2-768x635

North Tyneside Unplugged is working in partnership with nophonezone.co.uk.

Dr Martin Lee is a Consultant Rheumatologist and Associate Senior Clinical Lecturer currently working for Newcastle-Upon-Tyne Hospitals and Newcastle University. He has a specialist interest in Young Adult and Adolescent care.

Dr Lee has published more than 40 papers and abstracts on topics including adult and adolescent rheumatology, sleep and smartphone overuse in a number of peer-reviewed journals including New Scientist, The British Medical Journal and Rheumatology. He is Deputy Chair of the Barbara Ansell National Network for Adolescent Rheumatology (BANNAR) and Co-Chair of the British Society for Paediatric and Adolescent Rheumatology Special Interest Group (BSR-BSPAR-SIG).

Dr Martin Lee created the concept of No Phone Zone in 2016 based on his reflections that the overuse of smartphones (particularly at bedtime and during the night) was having negative effects on his patients’ sleep hygiene, mental and physical wellbeing, interpersonal relationships, productivity and online safety.

Supporting Partners 

We're really grateful to all the businesses that are helping to spread the message and support the North Tyneside Unplugged project in different ways.

Olives

Olives at the Station Bar & Restaurant, Whitley Bay

PER

Pirate Escape Rooms, Whitley Bay

GF

Gravity Force Trampoline Park, Sunderland

ntc

All North Tyneside Council Leisure Centres

3

BBC Radio Newcastle

bbcLN

BBC Look North News

bella

Bella Italia, Silverlink Retail Park

f&b

Frankie and Benny's, Silverlink Retail Park

nandos

Nando's, Silverlink Retail Park

m&s

Marks and Spencer, Silverlink Retail Park

pizza

Pizza Hut, Silverlink Retail Park

Pan

Pantrini's Fish and Chips, Whitley Bay

download

The Crab and Waltzer, Whitley Bay

ntbf

North Tyneside Business Forum

eden

Eden's Cafe, Whitley Bay

PD

Puddle Ducks Swimming Lessons, Tyne and Wear

cullcabk

Cullercoats Bike and Kayak, Cullercoats

RF

Reflex School of Taekwondo, Whitley Bay

SEG

Segedunum Roman Fort, Wallsend

kikis

Kiki's Kabin soft play, North Shields

splat

The Splat Centre, Whitley Bay

linksart

The Links Art Gallery Cafe, Whitley Bay

treehouse

The Treehouse soft play, Whitley Lodge

boatyard

The Boatyard Cafe, Cullercoats

RPS

Rockpool School Education, Whitley Bay

costa

Costa Coffee, Whitley Bay, Silverlink and Royal Quays

cc

Cullercoats Coffee, Cullercoats

redezvous

Rendezvous Cafe, Whitley Bay

Pulp

Pulp Fiction Future Food, Whitley Bay

kith

Kith & Kin Coffee and Kitchen, Whitley Bay

KH

Kirkly Hall Zoological Gardens, Ponteland

22405972_492074817831442_8631340470100815911_n

Room 305, Whitley Bay