Members of a virtual book club in the Cariboo Chilcotin will have a chance to chat with the book’s author from all the way Down Under on the topic of kids and tech safety.
The livestream featuring Brad Marshall, Australian author of The Tech Diet for your Child & Teen: The 7-Step Plan to Unplug and Reclaim Your Kid’s Childhood, is set for the evening of May 13, which will be Friday afternoon for the special guest.
“It took a lot of co-ordination to find a time that worked with the time difference,” said Kimberly Vance-Lundsbye, who has facilitated the book club through her work with Cariboo Chilcotin Partners for Literacy.
The book club, made up of more than 90 members from around the region, has been running since February. Each week, the group meets online to discuss various topics from the book, including cybertrauma, video game addiction, social media and screen time limitations.
It’s the third book club Vance-Lundsbye has facilitated, focusing on a parenting book, and the topic of technology couldn’t be more relevant, she said.
“From a literacy perspective, it’s important to try to be ahead of a problem, rather than responding to it,” Vance-Lundsbye explained. “Tech is developing at a rate that is faster than we can even catch up to with these books. This particular book is easy to read and it offers an actual plan that people can implement with their families.”
Marshall is the clinical director of an internet addiction clinic called Northshore Kidspace just outside of Sydney, and works with children and teens who are struggling with too much technology in their lives.
He reached out to Vance-Lundsbye through Facebook after he noticed that he had sold upwards of 85 of his books in the South Cariboo.
“He wanted to find out why he sold so many copies in this small town in Canada,” she said.
After explaining the online book club, Vance-Lundsbye asked if he would be willing to join the group online for a question-and-answer session, and though it took some time to work out the date, he was happy to take part.
The book club has been brainstorming the past few weeks and have come up with six questions to ask, most of which expanding on topics that are covered in the book.
The livestream will be available to the public May 13 at 7 p.m. Anyone wishing to tune in can follow the Cariboo Chilcotin Partners for Literacy Facebook page or email email@example.com