Best Ways to Handle the Challenges of Digital Parents
Parents report that the way they handle the challenge of digital parenting includes:
- 12-13 years old is the average age when children establish social media accounts which coincides with the age most teens get their first smartphone
- Almost 62% of parents use phones to call and keep track of their child’s whereabouts
- 50% of parents don’t negotiate a smartphone contract with their children
- 85% of parents know how to unlock their child’s phone, but only 60% know their child’s social media passwords
- 59% of parents check their child’s phone manually either daily or weekly, 36% check it weekly, 16% monthly, 20% rarely and less than 3% never check
- Only 26% of parents are aware of alternate social media accounts their child uses as a decoy to their “real” profile, but experts believe that most teens have decoy accounts
“Parents need to be proactive in finding these fake accounts,” says TeenSafe CEO Ralph Acosta. “Many teens have more than two or three public-facing social media accounts and a ‘Finsta’ or fake account where they post without inhibition thinking it will stay private.
The danger is that it doesn’t stay private. This study shows that there are many other steps parents can take to become digital-safety savvy including ongoing digital literacy, talking continuously as a family and protective monitoring.”
A new CDC ( Center for Disease Control) resource for educators and parents offers the following cyber safety strategies:
2. Develop rules. Together with your child, develop rules about acceptable and safe behaviors for all electronic media.
3. Explore the Internet. Visit the websites your child frequents, and assess the pros and cons. Most websites and on-line activities are beneficial. They help young people learn new information and interact with people who have similar interests.
4. Talk with others. Talk to other parents about how they have discussed technology use with their children.
5. Connect with the school . Parents are encouraged to work with their child’s school and school dist rict to develop a class for parents that educates about school policies on electronic aggression and resources available to parents.
6. Educate yourself. Stay informed about the new devices and websites your child is using. Continually talk with your child and explore the technology yourself.
Sources: TeenSafe and the CDC
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