What turns you on?

Just think of all the people, er, things you could do if you stopped watching television.

Just think of all the people, er, things you could do if you stopped watching television.

I don’t mean “turn on” in the Spicy Personals sense. I mean, what’s truly important to you? When the workday is done, what do you run home to?

The answers to the first questions are different for everybody. Family, friends, art, nature, pets, sports and hobbies enliven each of us in unique ways. However, the answer to the last question is the same for most Americans. After work, we run home to our televisions. According to the TV Turnoff Network, the average adult watches four hours of television per day. (This might seem normal, until you consider that hardly anyone would answer “television” when asked what was truly important to them.) Children ages 2 to 17 watch an average of 19 hours and 40 minutes per week. During that week, they will spend only 38.5 minutes in conversation with their parents.

Why do we give our time to television and let it shape our children’s worldviews? TV Turnoff Week is a good time to ask this question. TV Turnoff Week, an annual campaign by the TV Turnoff Network, has convinced more than 24 million participants to stop watching TV for an annual seven-day stint. This year, TV Turnoff Week began on Monday, April 19, and continues through Sunday, April 25. It’s a perfect time to see what your life would look like if you had those four hours back each day. Talk to your family. Start an art project. Take a walk. Watch less. Do more.

Why not attend the Friday “Fun” Dango? It’s a day of crafts, storytelling, gardening and snacks for kids and parents sponsored by the University of California Cooperative Extension. “Fun” Dango happens in shifts: Friday from 9 a.m. until noon and from 5 p.m. until 8 p.m. at the Parkside Church Facility at 3385 Richardson Drive in Auburn. Call (530) 889-7350 for information. The Martin O. Lawrence Library, located at 1000 Caroline Avenue in Galt, also will have free family programs throughout TV Turnoff Week. Call (916) 264-2920 for a schedule. Visit www.tvturnoff.org for information.