Monday, August 29, 2016

8 Tips for Parents to Monitor Kids Online Behavior

Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram, Snapchat, Minecraft and Pokemon Go are only a handful of the thousands of online social media channels and apps where kids can get lost and obsessed. Even though there are many benefits to kids using these sites and apps including problem-solving, increased socialization and creativity, there are many more downsides. 

In fact, just recently I read about a new type of depression called "Facebook depression." It's where de-friending and cyberbullying can affect a child's (and also an adults) self-esteem and self-worth causing symptoms of depression. Those Facebook pictures always look like people are having a great time. The question to ask, "Are they really?" or "Are they just posing for the camera?"

As parents, we not only have to prepare our kids for the real world, we also have to prepare them for the online world. The following are some tips to help monitor your kids social networking time and experience:

  1. Create kids rules for online safety
  2. Discuss what online reputation is
  3. Talk about online dangers
  4. Friend your child on Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram, Snapchat, etc.
  5. Set a power down time where kids are kids - technology-free
  6. Check privacy and restriction settings, especially Youtube and Ratings for apps, movies, music and tv shows
  7. Use online monitoring software such as Net Nanny
  8. Keep mobile phones and computers out of your kids bedroom when sleeping