Parents often face new challenges and problems as children and young people become more proficient in using the Internet, technology and social media.
Parenting is inherently difficult, raising children in the era of Internet rampant is even more difficult, below are 10 tips for better parenting in the digital age.
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9 parenting tips in the digital age
Consider the age for your child to use technology
According to research, the use of digital devices by children from an early age has both positive and negative effects, depending on the purpose of using the device and how long it is used. However, experts recommend that children under 24 months of age should not be exposed to smart devices as often as older children.
Parents should consider restricting their child’s use of digital technology until school age. Because when children start school, they need to use technology and it is logical to introduce technology to them when they really need it.
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Using technology with your child
You should go online with your child regularly, watch the apps or games your kids play or the videos your kids watch, There’s a wide range of apps that both parents and kids can use, and proven to be a beneficial parental-child connection experience. For example, parents can play games on the phone with their children.
This will help you share experiences with your child, promote family relationships, and check if the content is appropriate or not. You can also show your child fun, interesting, or educational web pages and show them how to bookmark them for later use.
Communicate openly and regularly with your children about the dangers of the Internet (such as exposure to pornography)
It is extremely important that you foster an environment that encourages your child to be open about anything, even the most sensitive issues. If your child experiences something negative using a digital device, he or she needs to know that they can talk to you about the situation.
Talking to your child is always one of the most effective ways to help your child proactively stay away from the dangers of the Internet, but don’t forget that your child is at an innocent age, easily “tempted” to click the links. Links can contain inappropriate content such as pornography.
Research shows that most pornography and sex addiction begin in adolescence. Pornography adversely affects brain development, negatively changes the perspective of self-image and encourages attitudes and acts of violence against women.
To ensure your child’s online environment is safe and healthier, you should consider using an additional online content filtering tool – considered by many parents as one of the best free parental control software to hide 15 types of harmful content on the Internet, including:
- Horrifying content like gore, accidents, ghosts, violence, murder, terrorism, etc
- Content about stimulants, addictive substances such as alcohol, beer, marijuana, drugs, etc
- Content with aggressive elements, hurting others like Hate speech
This free porn blocker extension can help to minimize your child’s access to harmful content, ensuring a healthy online environment for your child but at the same time, not invading their privacy rights.
Educate your child about the importance of real-life interactions
Digital devices and social networks are seen by children as catalysts for real life. While social media broadens relationships, real-life social interaction is still important to both your physical and mental health.
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Humans are social creatures. Research shows that people who are more socially active tend to live longer. Help your child understand that there is no digital technology that can replace face-to-face social interactions.
Set clear boundaries
Some boundaries you can set for your child and help them stick to them are:
- Do not use Internet-connected devices one hour before going to bed
- Use in the evening after completing homework
- Do not go online before school
- Do not play on the phone or tablet computer when family and friends come to play
- Do not use the phone during mealtimes
Setting these boundaries will help minimize the negative effects associated with the misuse of smart devices. However, you also need to set an example for your children by strictly following the above rules.
Let your child understand who you need to stay away on the Internet
With the development of social networks, the sexual assault of children is becoming too common. These risks include children who are exposed to people they do not know or with adults posing as children online. For example, a kid might be persuaded to meet someone they don’t know, share personal information with a stranger, or provide contact details after clicking a message that pops up.
Or the predator entices the minor to engage in pornographic conversations. Or arrange to meet with a minor to commit sexual acts that are illegal, unlawful and unethical.
Encouraging your child to become independent can be of great help as they grow up. You can encourage your kids to go online safely, give them the freedom to go online unattended, and educate them about the dangers of being online and exposed to harmful content.
Interact positively with your child
Make sure to interact positively with your child regularly. This will help encourage your child to have a positive thought and learn to have fun.
This interaction may or may not be digital. But having fun and positively interacting without technology will show your child that life is full of fun and not just the internet. For example, you can:
- Organize family picnics
- Let your child play sports
- Take your child to the park
Always stay update
Since children are always curious about the world around them, you should allow them to show themselves new things about society. Encouraging children to show their parents new things, they will develop confidence in themselves from school. Encouraging your child to delve deeper into a topic they love using the Internet encourages them to use their digital device as a learning tool.
On the contrary, as a parent, you want to teach your children everything you know so that they develop as fully as possible. To do that, as well as to educate your child better, you need to fully equip your child’s development concerning the Internet world. Only when you understand, you can educate your children more effectively and better protect them from the dangers of the Internet?
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