Keeping your kids safe is Job No. 1 for a parent. But with the increasing amount of complexity in the modern world, it is hard to keep up with all the sources of danger. Kids are under threat from internet predators, electricity, and social isolation, among many other things. Here is s quick guide to helping prepare your kids to be safe around technology.
Although the internet is a great learning resource and way of connecting to opportunities, it is also infested with a few bad apples that are looking to take advantage of the young and naïve. Children need to know what kinds of requests for information online are legitimate and which are scams or worse. Teach your kids to be skeptical without being entirely closed off, to evaluate situations based on common sense and the best information they can gather. At the same time, take care not to scare them; fear of technology is a serious impediment to their futures.
Proper Usage Times
With as many devices as are now a part of our daily lives, today’s kids need strong boundaries on how often they use their gadgets more than ever. Setting limits on the time spent on smartphones or the internet helps make sure that kids have time for other things that are important, like exercise, homework, and chores. It is also important to let them know what times are appropriate to take out their portable devices and which times are not. Having a dinner hour where family members are required to put their phones away is a great way to teach this and also have quality time.
Although electricity is possibly the most important human invention ever, it is a dangerous tool, one more than capable of seriously injuring the unwary. And the natural curiosity of children all too often draws them into its path. Let your kids know that electric appliances and outlets are not toys and therefore should not be toyed with. Teach them the proper ways to unplug anything, recognizing and properly disposing of leaky and faulty batteries and power supplies, and how water can heighten the effects of electric issues.
In addition to being potentially dangerous, your personal electronics probably aren’t especially cheap either. Kids love to play on smartphones and tablets and other grown-up toys, but aren’t always the best at taking care of them. With the best of intentions, your kids could end up breaking phone screens or keyboards. As part of a general program, you should make sure your children learn to treat the property of others with respect. Encourage your children to think about how they would feel if others were careless with their own precious possessions, and you’ll help them to develop empathy as well.
Though parental anxiety is certainly understandable, the fact is that most kids are able to grow up with relatively few problematic incidents. Cautious and productive planning, such as reading articles like this one, should let you help your kids down a path to safety and happiness.