The parents of the post-millennials are the pioneers who are raising a tech-addicted generation. Almost every generation struggles with new innovations but the earlier inventions were not as addictive as the smartphones and social media are. These digital technologies generate feel-good chemicals in human brains and deliver pleasure. As you use it, you feel pleasure and want to remain engaged in the activity to get more pleasure. As well as being addictive, these digital technologies also hold several risks putting down the physical, psychological and mental health of the user. Fortunately or unfortunately, today’s children are completely dependent on these innovations and take their influence on every aspect of their lives. Whether they are in school or at home, they have a technology to learn and play. It sparks up the need to manage their technology use to safeguard them from the potential dangers.
To ensure the digital safety of kids and make them stay emotionally connected to their parents and family, here are a few guidelines to follow.
A relationship strengthens when you give more importance to each other rather than to your mobile phones and social media posts. Give more attention and time to your kids and they would give it back to you. The more parent-kid bond will be strong the more probability would be of your kid coming to you in problematic situations instead of seeking sympathy from the strangers online.
Talk and Listen
Have regular discussions with your kids about the use of digital technologies and listen to their point of views. Ask open-ended questions like how a cyber-bully should be dealt with? How to get protection from cyberbullying? OR what can be hazards of sharing inappropriate photos or personal information on the web? This will encourage your kids to speak up about their experiences and make them feel comfortable sharing problems they might be facing due to the digital technologies.
Each new day brings a new app, software, update, game or a new technology that parents and kids can explore together. Kids love experimenting new things and this is because they never bother the safety loopholes of the mobile apps and software. Ask your kid about his new favorite app and give it a try so you could figure out the risks attached to it. If you find something interesting share it with your kid. Play games together; celebrate victories and defeats; set filters to your photos and discover entertaining and informative stuff together. See the world from your kids’ eyes and support them dealing with the risks.
Setting limits is crucial to restrain kids from being addictive to the internet and social media. Today’s teens never want to take a break from the internet but being a parent you are responsible to decide that how much is too much. Rules may displease your kids but these are significant to develop discipline. For example, you can set time limits for the use of mobile phone and apps. You can take the support of the TheOneSpy Mobile parental monitoring app to supervise your kids’ mobile phone, computer and internet use and set limits for using these technologies.
Encourage Tech Free Activities
Studies confirm that teens spend around nine hours a day using social media. Remaining stick to the screens does not only put stress on their eyes but also triggers psychological issues. Adopt physical and tech-free activities and encourage your kids to join you. Make plans for weekends and enjoy at least one holiday a month without letting your mobile phones disturb you. It will help your kids understand how relaxing the life is without the interference of digital assistants.
Be a Role Model
Model the behavior you want your kids to adopt. Limit your technology use when you are with your family. Do not bring your mobile phone or laptop to dining tables and give attention to your family on free times. Your kids would do the things they would see you doing rather than what you ask and want them to do.
Hope you would find these tips helpful in learning a few effective ways to raise your kids in the digital era.