Learn about one dad's push for screen-free afternoons, the COSI Science Festival and a new book on diversity from a local educator.

It was the beginning of summer break, and Colin Gawel, proprietor of Colin's Coffee in Upper Arlington and a longtime local musician, was pondering his middle school son's summer and the impact of screen time. His brainstorm led to the creation of a Facebook page, “Summer Screen Free 12 to 3.”

“It's not been an issue with my son, but I've been watching him play Fortnite,” Gawel said. “I'm not opposed to the game. I was just thinking about ways to carve out some time and take a break. It seemed like a nice step to limit screen time”

Gawel sees the page as a way for parents to share stories and ideas, rather than a mandated no-phone-or-tablet-from-noon-to-3-p.m. pledge. “We're all facing similar challenges in that area,” he said. “There's no right or wrong way to parent. It's pretty much a work in progress.”

Search “Summer Screen Free 12 to 3” on Facebook to join the conversation.

COSI pulled out all the stops (think: exploding foam and flying balls) when it announced the new COSI Science Festival planned for May 2019. It's still in the planning stages, but will include four big days of science throughout Central Ohio, culminating with a science carnival day outside COSI.

Battelle has signed on as a partner for the event with an $850,000 funding commitment. If you've been laboring under the assumption that festivals are just for the culinary, performing, visual and cultural arts, the COSI Science Festival is out to dispel that notion. The goal: engaging the community to promote science literacy.

Local educator Samuel Johnson Jr. has published a new book on community and diversity for young people. “The We Belong Bunch: Pookie J's School Day” helps kids see diversity in their own setting. In the story, Pookie J is an African-American fifth-grader who wants to grow up to be a college professor like his father. The book is co-authored by Johnson's wife, Angela, a social worker.

Inspiring news for and about Central Ohio parents. Got a tip for our next issue? Send it to contact@columbusparent.com with Parent Pulse in the subject line.