Parents must be involved with children’s online presence Featured

With the many different social media platforms floating around on the Internet, parents and guardians are making moves to become more educated to better protect their children.
Sunday afternoon, Courtney Warren gave a Tech Talk to adults at First United Methodist Church in Cleveland and discussed different social media platforms and how parents can work with their children to stay in the know.
"With new social media apps coming out each and every day, we're seeing more and more freedom on the Internet. This can be a good and a bad thing depending on how your child handles their social media presence," said Warren, who encouraged parents to talk to their children about the different apps they use.
"An open line of communication is key when it comes to social media. It's incredibly easy for kids to have a social media account and a parent not know about it. Parents absolutely need to be actively involved in their child's online life just like they are involved in their real life," said Warren.
She said parents should have conversations with their children about what social media apps they have and how they use those apps.
"Don't just chat about them, have them show you and walk you through the accounts they have. Get them to explain to you how they use it and why they enjoy that particular app," she said.
Warren emphasized the importance of parents staying educated on different apps and current social media trends. She said parents need to do the research themselves rather than listening to articles on Facebook.
"You wouldn't let your child go to a place you're not familiar with so why are you letting them in an area of the Internet you aren't familiar with? It's our jobs as parents to stay educated on these up and coming applications.
"Before your child downloads a new app, take a day or so to familiarize yourself with the app. Remember that these apps can be dangerous but only if used inappropriately. Talk to your child about what you expect of their online behavior just as you would talk to them about how they behave in a restaurant or at school," she said.
Many parents refuse to get on social media or have their own accounts. Some say they don't want to mess with it and others say they avoid it and have their children avoid it as well.
Warren said that can only be a strategy for so long.
"My child was born in 2016 and her generation is Gen Alpha and most tweens and teens are now called iGen. According to a generational researcher named Mark McCrindle, Generation Alpha is part of an unintentional global experiment where screens are placed in front of them from the youngest age as pacifiers, entertainers and educational aids.
'They began being born in 2010, the year the iPad was introduced, Instagram was created and 'app' was the word of the year, so they have been raised as 'screenagers' to a greater extent than the fixed screens of the past could facilitate. For this reason we also call them Generation Glass.' This shows us why being aware of technology is even more important," said Warren.
"Parents, as plain as I can say it, you need to be on social media. I absolutely recommend having every social media app your child has.
"You can leave that up to you as to whether or not you are friends with them on the app but you need to know it well enough to be able to navigate it on your own. The time for abstinence is over when it comes to social media. It's here and we have to adapt," she said.

Last modified onMonday, 09 April 2018 21:33

Leave a comment

Make sure you enter all the required information, indicated by an asterisk (*). HTML code is not allowed.

back to top