A study from The University of Texas at Austin found that the more time a child spends in front of the TV, the less he plays creatively. A kid who watches three hours per day might engage in fantasy play, art projects, and other imaginative endeavors a third less than one who doesn't watch any. "When a child is watching TV or playing video games, he's being entertained by somebody else's imagination and not using his own," says Dr. Miller. Cut your kids' TV, computer, and handheld game use to two hours maximum per day, and ignore the "I'm bored" complaints. The first time Carol Barnier, of New Fairfield, Connecticut, declared a screen-free day, her three kids protested. "But after an hour of flopping about and whining, their monotony catapulted them into activity," she recalls. Over the years, her strategy has inspired them to construct a medieval village from blocks and come up with their own written language based on symbols they invented.