Digital Parenting Skills
Modern parents need to encompass some new sets of skills in their parenting style.
Parent Zone suggests the WWW approach to communicating with your child.
- Who is your child talking to online (classmates, friends in town/abroad, strangers)?
- What is your child doing online?
- Where are they going online (type of websites, platforms, etc.)?
- When is your child going online (with the sitter, grandparents, late at night, etc.)?
2. Active Mediation In Communication
Active mediation essentially means ensuring that your child knows it is ok to come to you to talk about what they are experiencing online, without fear that they will be punished.
Active mediation is particularly important when it comes to the use of the internet because children and indeed teens can encounter situations such as witnessing a cyber bullying incident while online, or come across a porn site at an inappropriate age and will need to feel secure in being able to discuss this with you without fear of sanction.
3. Critical Thinking
Put the thinking caps on and decide whether your family needs that new device, game, app, robot or what have you. Once you say yes, think of ways to use the technology or device safely and responsibly.
Then think of ways to maximize your privacy and data protection settings.
Rinse, repeat. Talk to your child about the pros and cons of using a device before you hand him/her a device, say for example a smart phone.
Do not assume that he /she knows the perfect use of it.
4. Avoid Confiscating Devices
Parents can often confiscate or ban the use of digital devices as a form of punishment.
This is rarely, if ever, effective and in some cases can lead to children using digital devices in other people’s homes or borrowing smartphones from friends to access the internet.
It is human nature that if something is banned, it becomes more intriguing!