Kids are kids, they should be guided and monitored! Don’t give the kids complete freedom when it comes to computer time. You’ve got to keep a good balance so you can make sure your kids are safe and healthy.
Most parents really wish that their kids would go outside, play a board game, or read a book. But kids nowadays are addicted… they just can’t resist going online for gaming, social networking, YouTube-ing and streaming stuff. There have never been so many distractions and entertainment options available! While it’s fun and necessary for kids to use computers, they should be monitored and balanced with other things.
Here are some sensible suggestions to balance kids’ computer time and keep them safe online.
1. Friend them!
Kids spend most of their time social networking. Studies show that88% of teenagers are one at least one social network. The best thing to do is go on that network and become an online ‘friend’ with your child. They might block you, they might censor their content but your presence will remind them to be careful online. Someone’s always watching!
2. Remind them to keep it impersonal
Social networking is fantastic! You can connect with faraway friends and even learn so much from people on social media. But. You need ground rules. Make sure that your kids keep personal information to a minimum and avoid competitions, giveaways and surveys. Also, sit them down and talk about the kinds of photos they can post. Make sure that their privacy settings are set correctly. Kids are so trusting, and there is an increasing risk of children making too much personal information public. Caution them and tell them never to divulge their full name, phone number, or address. It is also better to keep the name of their school and date of birth offline.”
3. Regulatethe computer
Time restrictions! That’s the key thing. You need to enforce them and make sure the kids know that you’re serious. You can also monitor their browser history and put on parental controls on their computers. And you can even regulate devices. Impose a rule that devices should never be allowed in bedrooms – keep that room for sleep, relaxation and book reading.
4. Go online together
You need to go online, so do they! You can work and study in the same room. When you’re in a room together, it may be better to face the other way to give them more space without distracting each other. Keep an eye on their screen though.
5. Adopt a Wi-fi curfew
Make sure that online sessions don’t go all night! Kids need to study, that’s great but you’ve got to agree on a finish time and then turn off the wi-fi. Disconnecting from the computer can mean reconnecting with the family.