With all that is available to young people today, it can be a bit overwhelming for parents. There is so much students can explore and learn from while at the same time, the consequences can be that much greater for misuse. It is important to remember, that in most ways, kids have not changed all that much and that technology is fundamentally still a tool. It is the way in which the tool is used that matters.
Here are resources parents can access for any age level of children. Information is available for children as young as preschoolers (2-4) and as old as teens (13+). We hope you find this information helpful as we better understand what it means to raise a digital child in an ever growing digital world.
Helpful Links for Families:
- Why Device-Free Dinners Are a Healthy Choice
- Cyberbullying Research Center: Minnesota
- Children's Internet Protection Act
- Technology Addiction: Concern, Controversy, and Finding Balance
- Google Safety Center for Families
American Academy of Pediatrics - "Media Use in School-Aged Children and Adolescents"
A recent report from the American Academy of Pediatrics entitled "Media Use in School-Aged Children and Adolescents" (October 2016) outlines a series of recommendations pertaining to screen time for children ages 5-18 years old. A full report is also available for download.
This study describes both the benefits and risks for media use by young people. In addition, recommendations are made for families regarding media use and students.
Recommendations for Families:
- Address what type of and how much media are used and what media behaviors are appropriate for each child or teenager, and for parents. Place consistent limits on hours per day of media use as well as types of media used.
- Promote that children and adolescents get the recommended amount of daily physical activity (1 hour) and adequate sleep (8–12 hours, depending on age).
- Recommend that children not sleep with devices in their bedrooms, including TVs, computers, and smartphones. Avoid exposure to devices or screens for 1 hour before bedtime.
- Discourage entertainment media while doing homework.
- Designate media-free times together (eg, family dinner) and media-free locations (eg, bedrooms) in homes. Promote activities that are likely to facilitate development and health, including positive parenting activities, such as reading, teaching, talking, and playing together.
Play your way to Internet Awesome.
Interland is an adventure-packed online game that makes learning about digital safety and citizenship interactive and fun—just like the Internet itself. Here, kids will help their fellow Internauts combat badly behaved hackers, phishers, oversharers, and bullies by practicing the skills they need to be good digital citizens.