In today’s world where children are growing up “highly digital”, it is important for the parents to help them learn the necessary and healthy concepts in terms of citizenship and digital use. The following are ten tips for parenting in the digital age.
- Delay them from engaging in social media
If possible, parents should act to delay introducing social media to their children as it greatly poses a dilemma. Parents must help them see the paradox of social media because if it is unwisely used, it can cost them something precious – such as their lives.
- Delay the use of smartphones
Once your children learn how to use smartphones, you can never tell what and how much things they can learn. You can never tell your kids are already exposed to nude selfies or sexualized conversations. So, resist the pressure of giving them a smartphone and delay their use of it.
- Manage the wifi
Keep it off when it is not needed. There are devices available that can help you cut off a specific device based on the ratings, content filters and bedtimes, instead of setting up parental controls on each device on your home. Switching off your wifi from time to time can teach your kids to use it wisely.
- Outside the home – smartphones are a big NO
When your kids are outside your house, they can still make and receive calls without a smartphone with the use of other devices such as a smartwatch. It has a GPS locator too so you can still locate their whereabouts.
- Introduce technology gradually throughout the years
Gradually introduce them gadgets over the years, not a major gadget at once. Give them a gadget that is appropriate to their age and need. In this way, they will not be overwhelmed with what their gadgets can do.
- Stay away from the screens when inside the bedroom
When it’s time for bed, it’s strictly a time for bed. No more cell phones, TVs, tablets, gaming devices, etc. Be consistent to help them break gaming addictions and endless social demands, hence, preserving their sleep patterns.
- Observe how they react to the digital age
Each kid responds to technology differently. Some will like social media while others will not. Parent your child based on what you have observed in them.
- Focus your parenting on emotions and affections
Teach your kids what really matters in life and how much you love them. Make them feel your life so they would turn away their attention to unimportant things such as gadgets, which can only destroy their lives in the long run.
- Keep memorable bonding moments with the whole family
Family days out, family vacations car rides together and eating together phone-free are great for catching your kids’ attention and driving them away from being exposed to the effects of digital age.
- Keep their faith in God
Being surrounded with technology and machines can make us feel like everything is robot-saturated – with no emotions and sense of true purpose. Keeping build your church in the family can help in preventing feeling this sense of social loneliness. The kids need to learn and discover the gift of life and their true purpose – offline.
Parents play a very big role in teaching their kids of the skills they need as well as in leading them to the right path. Stay aware of your kids’ internet activities and don’t hesitate to step in if necessary.