Being a parent is difficult, more so in these times that we live in. There are way too many distractions and too little time to sit down and think. Technology gives instant gratification, teaching children that they can get whatever they want instantly. But it’s our job as parents to guide them and teach them how to be responsible in using technology.
Keep Up with the Times (Educate Yourself)
Technological advancements have been progressed rapidly since the 90s, and a lot has changed since then. The things we know about technology when we were younger might not even be familiar to the children of today. For instance, children actually don’t know that the “save” button is taken from the image of a floppy disk. They don’t even know what a floppy disk is!
On the flip side, there are also many things about today’s technology that we have to catch up to. It’s important that we understand what type of information and technology the children are being exposed to on a daily basis. Staying well-informed and vigilant are important keys to protecting children from temptations and sins.
Technology Isn’t the Enemy
No matter how much we shield children from technology, it is the future that they will inevitably live in. That is why it’s important to accept that gadgets, online applications and websites, and all other technologies will have a permanent place in the next generation’s lives. As parents, we are tasked to teach children how to use technology responsibly. Your child’s computer isn’t the problem; how they would use or abuse it is what you need to look out for.
Get on Social Media Too
To better understand what the younger generation is being exposed to, it’s a good idea to experience it first hand. Before all that, make sure you have a strong conviction and a steady heart. You are responsible for leading your family in the right direction, and it’s important that it starts with you. That said, go on social media, read up on what trends may cause harm to your child, and get a better insight on what language they use online.
Know What Online Citizenship Is and Teach It to Your Child
Instead of demonizing technology, teach your children the positive uses for it. You can show that it can be used to learn new things, such as cooking or fixing furniture. Explain that it’s a method of communication as well. For instance, highlight the good things about technology, such as the fact that it enables them to contact their grandparents or cousins from far away. Help them understand that technology is a great avenue to do errands and make purchases, such as buying a lightbulb from Bryson or ordering a book off Amazon. After all, technology isn’t all bad — it’s useful, and that’s what we need to impart.
The key here is to teach your children the skills and knowledge to make good use of technology instead of abusing it. This will help them be better and well-adjusted individuals, especially in the 21st century. Online citizenship is something that’s important, and every child needs to be made aware of how to interact with the digital world properly.
Understand the Risks and Set a Limit to Their Use
Leaving your child unattended for hours on end in front of their computer or smartphone will simply lead to no good. For one, there’s the physical danger of their eyes becoming weaker and their body posture becoming bad. But there are also the dangers of looking at inappropriate content and communicating with malicious individuals. As parents, it’s our responsibility to protect our children from these, and setting a sense of limitation to their use will both protect them and teach them self-control and restraint. They will be tempted, yes, but learning how to overcome temptation is also a part of what they need to know.
When Something Bad Happens…
What do you do if your child does something bad? There are many parenting approaches to disciplining a child, but to condemn them would only further lead them to the wrong path. Instead, keep the communication open and allow them to express themselves. It’s also important to get insight on whether they feel regretful over what they did or merely regretful that they were caught.
Teach Them to Appreciate the Outdoors
Living a good balance between technology and nature can help your child to grow up more holistically. Help them see the beauty of the world, make them appreciate the time that they have with family, and encourage them to do activities outside of the virtual space. This can also help bring them closer to their spiritual side and better understand the world around them.
Technology is here to stay, and children will inevitably be exposed to it. Remember that completely banning them from using these innovations is not the answer. The internet and other technological advancements have helped humanity make great progress. As much as there are dangers around, we cannot ignore the fact that this is the reality we live in. The more important thing is not to lose sight of raising well-rounded kids.