We all want to bring up our children to become happy, well-adjusted adults who can make a valuable contribution to the society in which they live. When we were young, learning was mostly a matter of going to school and paying attention. However, we are now the first generation of parents who are bringing up children in the Digital Age and this has added responsibilities we could never have imagined when we were growing up. One of our blog posts back in February covered How to Make Sure Your Kids are Safe Online – an essential consideration as we need to ensure that our children have the computer skills they will need for both learning and working. Although we might not like our children using the internet, they will need to be tech-savvy enough to use computers if they are to keep up with their classmates and compete on a level playing field.
Most children will be aware of social media platforms, especially Facebook which seems to be used by the majority of the population from children right through to grandparents and great grandparents. Despite the fact that Facebook Terms and Conditions stipulate that you need to be 13 years of age or older to register an account, many children younger than that register by filling in the date of birth with a different birth year.
Many young parents nowadays are filling their Facebook Timelines with photos or their babies and small children and posting updates about their children’s antics – it’s a great way of sharing the joy with family and friends. If you don’t allow your child to register social media accounts when their friends do, you can be pretty sure they will register as soon as they are able anyway. Instead of trying to fight the onslaught of social media, it’s probably best to accept it and concentrate on making sure that your children are safe and responsible when using these social media platforms.
If you’re looking for some advice on how to raise children who are tech savvy enough to conquer the computer skills they are going to need in later life, there some very good books available.
Bringing Up Geeks by Marybeth Hicks is aimed at showing parents how they can help their kids to gain an enthusiasm for learning that will help them make great progress both at school and in life. The book identifies unhealthy social influences and will help parents to critically examine cultural norms for childhood and child rearing, offering concrete techniques that can be used by parents.
Raising Children in a Digital Age by Bex Lewis challenges some of the fears surrounding children and the internet and creates a healthy balance between scare stories and real issues. It will clue you in on issues you may not have considered about the internet and give you the confidence to allow your children to engage digitally while offering practical advice on keeping safe online.
Raising Generation Tech by Jim Taylor, PhD provides the latest research on technology, social media and popular culture. The psychologist author explores how technology impacts children’s values, relationships, thinking and decision making and offers parents realistic advice on providing their children with a healthy balance of technology and strong values.