CMA Seminars


Australian Council on Children and the Media (ACCM) presents

Dr Susan Linn: The Hostile takeover of childhood - protecting children from hidden online marketing 

A great opportunity for parents and teachers to engage with a leading expert on the commercialisation of childhood

Tuesday 7th May, 2019

7:15pm - 8:45pm

Concordia College Chapel
24 Winchester St, Highgate,  Adelaide, SA 5063

FREE event (but audience must register)

Attendees will have the opportunity to win a Space Talk phone watch




One of the most pervasive and troubling problems associated with children’s screen time is that most of the platforms and media aimed at kids are rife with overt and covert advertising. In this seminar, Dr. Susan Linn, founder of the Campaign for Commercial-Free Childhood and author of Consuming Kids will talk about how apps, games and digital devices benefit marketers at the expense of children.

In addition, Susan will discuss:

  • The ways that children are developmentally vulnerable to advertising
  • The sophisticated data collection and marketing techniques corporations routinely use to target kids on digital devices
  • Why children need us to create better policies to protect them from corporate marketing
  • Practical steps families can take to limit the harmful effects of commercialism on their children


 More information in PDF format

This event is proudly supported by MGM Wireless and Concordia College




Contact Details:      PH  08 8376 2111





Strategies for struggles with screens

A conversation with US “mediatrician” Dr Michael Rich &

Australian parenting expert Dr Justin Coulson

Facilitated by Dr John D’Arcy - AM (family doctor)

presented by Australian Council on Children and the Media

Parents say that ‘too much screen time' is a top health concern. Worries include how mobile phones and iPads impact on sleep, relationships, school performance, exercise, connection with nature, posture, and how to get children off games like Fortnite. 
Here’s a unique chance for you to discuss these issues with a top US expert in this field, and a leading Australian parenting specialist. 
Join the conversation…...  

About the speakers

Dr Michael Rich 
Center for Media and Child Health

Dr Justin Coulson

Dr John D’Arcy

Thursday 9th August 2018

7:30pm – 9pm

Presbyterian Ladies' College, Sydney

Boundary St Croydon NSW 2132 Australia

Tickets $35 Concession $30

For parents and teachers




Tots & Tech: Challenges for early childhood in a digital age

(This event has been cancelled) 

Friday 13th July (Brisbane)

9:30am - 4:30pm

How to deal with devices and screens is one of the biggest challenges for today’s parents.

They often look to trusted early childhood professionals for practical advice.

But the debates about harms and benefits can make this difficult.

This seminar aims to present the latest research about the impacts of screen use on sleep, posture, social, emotional, language and cognitive development, and on using technology to promote healthy play.  It will offer practical guidance useful to early childhood health, welfare and education professionals, parents and carers.   

Confirmed Speakers:

Associate Professor Michael Nagel - School of Education, University of the Sunshine Coast

Topic: Tots and Technology – A Toxic Combination?

Biography & Abstract

Professor Leon Straker, Curtin University

Topic: The potential impact of increasing media use on young children’s physical health and development

Biography & Abstract

Professor Sarah Blunden, Appleton Institute 

Topic: Screen time or dream time?

Biography & Abstract

Rita Princi -  Psychologist & Management Committee Member of the International Association of Clinical Neuropsychotherapy

Topic: Children and Technology! The effect on Social and Emotional Well-Being

Biography & Abstract

Professor Sheena Reilly - Griffith University

Topic: Promoting Child Language Development via Healthy Screen Time 

Biography & Abstract

This conference will be of interest to early childhood educators, academics, health professionals, parent organisations and policy makers.

There are limited spaces available so please book early!

EARLY BIRD: $205 (extended - closes 13th June, 2018)

BOOK NOW - Brisbane

Venue (Brisbane):

Queensland University of Technology
Victoria Park Rd, Kelvin Grove
Brisbane, QLD 4059

Contact Details:
Clare Phillips 08 8376 2111 or


Raising Boys with Steve Biddulph in Sydney

Thursday 5th October, 2017 at 7:30pm

A seminar with Steve Biddulph (psychologist and one of the world's best known parent educators).
Based on million-copy world-wide bestseller Raising Boys, Steve will talk about why boys are different
and how to help them become happy and well balanced men.

Marrickville Townhall
303 Marrickville Rd
Marrickville, NSW

Ticket Prices
General Admission: $35
Concession: $25 (full-time student, pension card holders - card must be presented on entry)

We regret that babies and children cannot be admitted to the theatre.









Parent seminars with Steve Biddulph

Two Adelaide seminars by Steve Biddulph (family psychologist and one of the world's best parent educators)

Concordia College Chapel
24 Winchester St
Highgate, SA 5063

Raising Girls Tuesday 1 November 2016 - 7:30pm

Based on his best-selling book. Steve discusses babyhood to womanhood - and how to help your daughter grow up wise, warm and strong.


Raising Boys Wednesday 2 November 2016 - 7:30pm

Based on million copy world wide bestseller. Steve will talk about why boys are different and how to help them become happy and well-balanced men








Technology and children: must-knows from the experts

Two seminars will be held on 16th May 2016 at

Mask Theatre, Tyndale Christian School
50 Fern Grove Boulevard
Salisbury East SA 5109


Join us as we hear from experts:

  • Dr Kate Highfield - Nationally recognised expert on how technology can be used
    as a tool in learning and play

  • Ben Riley - Cognitive Behaviour Therapist; Researcher on gambling-related digital media

4:00pm-5:30pm: Professional Development ($25pp)

  • How to use devices in an integrated way
  • How to think about a world that is becoming increasingly digital
  • How to let students share their expertise without teachers feeling threatened
  • Awareness of potential issues


7:00-8:30pm: Parents/Carer Session (Gold coin donation)

  • Being a step ahead of our children
  • Understanding the links between games and gambling
  • Being clued in about devices
  • Encouraging children to be smart users







Parent Seminar

Marketing to Children: Resisting the pressure







7.30pm, Wed 19 August 2015

Highgate School
4 Hampstead Avenue
Highgate, SA 5063












Professor Elizabeth Handsley
Professor of Law at Flinders University; President of the
Australian Council on Children & the Media since 2011

Regulating children’s exposure to marketing: the role of government, industry and parents

Dr Julie Robinson
Senior Lecturer, School of Psychology, Flinders University

Children’s responses to advertising: research and reaction

Chaired by Pam Simmons, South Australian Guardian for Children and Young People 


Cost $22 per person

ACCM members $20 (contact ACCM for your booking code)

Book your ticket at:

This seminar is hosted by Highgate School




Parent Seminar

“Guidelines for Good Gaming”

Physical and psychological effects of video and computer gaming


Thursday 19th March 7:30-9:30pm
Mercedes College, Springfield, South Australia


  • Prof Leon Straker- Professor of Physiotherapy, Curtain University
    The physical impact of electronic games – pros, cons and guidelines for wise use  
    (see below for links to publications by Prof Straker)

  • Dr Wayne Warburton- Senior Lecturer School of Psychology, Macquarie University
    The psychological impact of electronic games – pros, cons and guidelines for healthy use


Chaired by Amanda Blair - Mother, columnist, broadcaster and company director



Publications by Prof Leon Straker:




Choosing and using apps with children:finding good games and avoiding the pitfalls

A presentation for parents and all who work with or care for children (toddlers to teens) to mark the commencement of our new apps review service: Know Before You Load

7.30-9:30 pm Monday 7 April 2014
Colonel Light Gardens Primary School
Windsor Avenue, Colonel Light Gardens  SA


Dr Kate Highfield, Institute of Early Childhood, Macquarie University, NSW

Kate is an enthusiastic expert on children’s use of technology in learning and play.  She will discuss choosing and using apps with children and introduce our new app review service.

Dr C Glenn Cupit, ACCM’s Vice-President and former Senior Lecturer in Child development at the University of South Australia will discuss 'Apps and other media stuff: Using them to raise happy and healthy children'



Dr Michael Carr-Gregg - Managing media in families

Monday 19th August 2013, Immanuel Auditorium,Novar Gardens SA

There was a very positive response to this seminar from the 300 people who attended. We have received many requests for Michael's presentation and information about the websites he mentioned. What follows is a brief summary of the presentation made by ACCM staff, together with links to some of the important sites that Michael mentioned.

The role of parents

  • Parents should be mentors, not mates. Parents need to set boundaries
  • Much technology is new to this generation and parents have to develop new knowledge and skills to manage children’s use. This is part of being a parent.
  • Have conversations with your child about everything , including what happens on facebook.

Development and the media

  • The brain doesn’t fully develop until 23 yrs for girls and 27 for boys
  • Young children : 0-2 yr olds should have no screen time- they need to develop relationships and interact with real people
  • Once they are over 2, for every hour of screen time, children should spend 2 hrs doing some other activity.
  • Children need skills, knowledge and strategies to use the media in a good way. Parents and schools can help them to develop these
  • Keep TVs and other screens (including phones) out of bedrooms - poor sleep affects hormone levels and eating behaviour, leading to obesity

Managing new media

  • Social media: treat others the way you’d like to be treated; don’t post anything that you don’t want the 4Ps to see- parents, police, predators and your principal!
  • Manage passwords; never give them out; make sure they are hard to decipher; use a program to randomly set password for wifi so that you are in control of family use.  
  • Play computer games together. Pay attention to the ratings.  Watch for signs of changes in behaviour. Set time limits. Gaming consoles all have digital controls: parents need to ensure these are on.
  • Mobile phones?  Ask yourself, “Does my child have a good record of sound decisions?" before allowing one

Facebook issues

  • No child should be on facebook before the age of 13
  • Before child goes on or other social media sites, parents need to become experts themselves - look at the Facebook Family Safety Centre together 
  • Talk about issues such as bullying so that your child is comfortable to tell you about what is happening. Know your child - you should be able to recognise signs of mental illness such as depression. Remember, children who commit suicide have other issues as well - it is not just what happens on social media.

Useful websites:

Cybersafety:  Child Exploitation and Protection Centre (CEOP)  ;   WiredSafety 

Online counselling for teens: eheadspace 

Mood assessment:  Black Dog Institute



Past Topics

  • Daytime Nighttime Screentime: Getting the balance right!
  • Grand Theft Brainspace? Games, apps & mobiles -issues & practical strategies
  • Video games: The good, the bad and the gory
  • facing up to facebook® with Dr Michael Carr-Gregg: what kids are doing online and how to keep them safe
  • Too Much Too Soon: guiding your child through a sexualised world
  • Bratz Britney and Bralettes: the sexualisation of childhood
  • Raising Girls
  • TV, Computers & Your Child: raising happy, healthy under 8’s