As a work-at-home, homeschool mom, I use technology all of the time. It is a daily tool for our family’s businesses as well as our daughter’s education. We live in the age of technology…it’s at our children’s fingertips from a very young age. Because of this, it’s super important for us to teach our kiddos how to be safe when using technology. So today I am sharing five safe technology tips for kids, in hopes that it might be helpful to you.
1. Talk about it regularly.
Families can create an open, evolving conversation about positive, safe decisions when using digital tools. It’s important for our kids to know that there are dangers and strangers online just like in real life. Remember to talk about it regularly and in a positive way so that kids are more likely to listen.
2. Use security and privacy settings as well as parental controls on devices.
Get familiar with the settings on your devices…computers, lap tops, phones, ipads, etc. Set them accordingly. LifeLock is one example of an Identity Theft Protection plan that helps safeguard your finances, credit, and good name.
3. Make a list of acceptable sites/apps.
Clearly explain and define boundaries on digital devices. Make a list as a family of acceptable sites and apps your kids are allowed to visit and use. My 6 year old has her own 2 folders on our ipad and she knows that those are the only folders she’s allowed to visit. We also have a (short) list of sites she is allowed to visit which we keep posted by our computer.
4. Monitor closely.
Although digital devices can be good distractions for kids while we put away the groceries or get dinner started, it goes without saying that we still need to closely monitor children while using digital devices.
5. Tell your kids about the #ShareAwesome campaign!
Today’s families use digital technology in every aspect of life – from learning and socializing, to gaming and shopping! Broad access and use of technology is awesome – and opens so many new opportunities for so many students. But like any aspect of life, there are things you need to know to make positive, safe decisions. The #ShareAwesome campaign seeks to build an understanding among parents and students that no matter the device, the app or the networking site – the skills we need to be safe and positive online are similar to what you need offline.
The #ShareAwesome contest invites social media users to share a smart and safe decision, uplifting accomplishment, or positive action for the good of others using hashtag #ShareAwesome on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook. Students who enter a photo between September 15 – November 30, 2014 will be eligible to win fantastic prizes, including tablets and a $2,500 scholarship! Visit ShareAwesomeNow.org to learn more.
So what’s your #ShareAwesome moment? How does your family use technology for good?
I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls Collective and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.