Social Moms Digital Parenting Tips
Parenting in this digital age is far more challenging than it was in traditional eras. The digital children get their hands on smartphones, tablets, apps, software, gadgets and internet connected devices before reaching elementary school years. They never mind trying perilous social media apps like Snapchat, Instagram, Tinder, Ask.fm, YikYak and Kik accelerating the odds of exposing to cyberbullying, sexting, catfishing and social media addiction.
Parents play a significant role in instilling children with a healthy and positive attitude towards technology. We cannot expect our children to be good digital citizens if we are not demonstrating good citizenship. ‘Do what I do’ is more influential than ‘do what I say’ in parenting. Make rules and help your kids use the digital media safely and responsibly. This article discusses digital parenting tips for social moms may help moms to raise connected children and protect them from the cruelties of the digital world.
Friend/follower but not stalker
When your kid puts his first step on social networking platform, make sure you are his first friend. Follow him on Facebook and YouTube. It is good to stay close to him as he enters into the world of social media. But do not overdo it and give your kid space to experiment taking healthy risks and building resilience. Do not give an impression of stalking and spying as it could distress kids and cause them being secretive or filtering their posts.
Be a digital role model
Demonstrate the change you expect from your children. Resist the temptation to check your phone over dining table and texting during driving. Track and evaluate your own digital habits and adopt healthy digital behavior and balance. Your kids pay more attention to what you do than what you say. So show them something good to imitate.
Have Frequent Discussions
Talking to your children is the easiest thing but keeping the communication line open is what required. Have discussions with your children about the use of mobile phone, internet and social media. Be open and direct. If you notice a sudden change in your kid’s behavior regarding the use of mobile phone or computer, talk to him and stay calm if your kid reveals any disapproving experience. Have frequent discussions to encourage kids sharing both online and offline experiences without being nosey.
Use Parental Control
The internet comes preloaded with the inappropriate content you would never want your kids to watch. Take support of parental control software to block unrestricted access to the internet. You can block adult content and inappropriate websites and watch out the activities of your kids performed on their mobile phone and computer devices.
The software helps you spy on the social media apps used by your kids and get you acquainted with kids’ encrypted conversations, friends list, and social media happenings. In addition to social media accounts, you can track the Instant Messaging apps and email accounts of your kids to ensure they are not being bullied or involved in any wrongdoing.
Set Technology Rules
Compile a list of rules related to the use of mobile phones, computers and internet.
For instance, you can set screen time limits to prevent children from wasting excessive time on mobile phone, television and computer. Restrict them from using social media and communicating with friends after a reasonable time of the day. Do not allow bringing phones to dining tables or using it during driving. Make it compulsory for children to set their social media profiles private and not sharing their passwords or logging into their social media accounts on a computer or mobile phone device of someone else.
It is recommended to make following these rules compulsory for all family members and not just for children.
Your 7-year-old could better use the Instagram features than you do. Keep educating yourself on the technologies, apps and games your kids take interest in. It will help you ensure whether they are on the right stuff or not. You can learn from the videos and tutorials on YouTube and other websites explaining technologies. Simply enter your query on a search engine and you will most probably get your answers.
Explore Digital World Together
Hang out with your kids online, watch videos, share photos and have fun. Ask for their favorite apps and games and download them on your phone. See the world through their eyes but also guide them on their way. Let them learn to experience the new technologies independently and freely but being responsible and secure.
Banning Social Media is not the solution
Some parents think they can safeguard their kids by keeping them out of all social media. If you ban social media you increase the odds of your child being socially excluded. It is better for parents to let their kids practice developing social skills in the space where their peers are, and most of them are in social media.