Technology in this digital age shouldn’t be a hurdle in raising kids. As a modern parent, I try my best to keep myself updated on the latest trend, not that I’m scared to be left behind – I just want to get ahead of my children to be able to guide them so they can simply have an authentic learning experience. For ages 4 and 6, they are absolutely brilliant.
I’ve always believed in “online netiquette” (thank you to the one who coined this term) which simply refers to the responsible use of our current technology to participate and connect with the global audience, irrespective of age. However, while technology presented itself as the most valuable innovation, it could also open a lot of risk opportunities when intentionally or unintentionally misused.
Most of us know that the cyber space can help anyone be creative and knowledgeable but on the flip-side, it can be a gateway to a horrific realm; dark web, bullying, child pornography, etc. This is where responsible parenting takes over. But what about finding balance in raising your kids despite having been caught up in the claws of these advancements?
I have listed down the best practices that I have been following; you may note that I have also read these online but based on my experience, I can say that they are fairly helpful:
1. Encourage technology in your household. This is not going anywhere; it will only improve and get more complicated.
2. Equip your children how to use it properly and responsibly. Allow them to think of how, when, why to use it and it should only be in moderation.
3. Set parental restrictions and filters. Enough said.
4. Encourage quality family time. It’s important to set limits when to use ipads. In our home, I don’t tolerate anyone who uses a tech device while having dinner.
5. Let technology serve its purpose. To strike a balance between fun and education, I only download what is applicable to my children. There are age restrictions for every application, check what is helpful for their learning and development.
6. Face-to-face engagement. This is what communication is all about; not through Facebook or Twitter. Don’t let technology rule you.
7. Technology should give us solutions, not problems. Know what is risky and not.
I know that finding balance in raising your kids is challenging but with proper supervision and safety strategy, it will be easy you to guide them find their moral compass.