Your Kids and Computers: Tips for Parents
These days pencil and paper may not be required for homework. It is more common for school children, at all ages, to need access to a computer for studying and homework assignments. As a parent, what are some things you must consider before you turn over the keyboard? Read on…
Internet Safety: No matter the age of your child, it’s important to warn them about talking to strangers online, providing credit card or personal information or clicking on suspicious links. Also remember that your child or teen could end up on a site unintentionally. A simple web search on an innocent topic can bring up all kinds of links.
Monitor their use: One way to keep your child or teen safer online is to monitor their usage. There are software programs that allow parents to track their children’s usage and set limits to the amount of time they spend online or on the computer or when the computer can be accessed. You also want to have the ability to limit access to certain types of websites, for both the intentionally curious teen and the accidentally roaming child.
Communal access and protection: The smartest way to monitor the use of a computer is to place it in a centralized area of the home where parents can see what is being accessed. Investigate the options for having parental controls installed on all devices that your children have access. There are also hardware-based parental controls to monitor/protect internet usage throughout the house.
Ergonomics: The use of computers, tablets and mobile devices will only become more of a tool in our everyday life. Start early in training your children good habits with their posture and alignment when using these devices, whether standing or sitting. A centralized family computer may need two desks or an adjustable table with a kid-sized chair.
One very important final note: Our children were raised in the online community and are pros at finding their way around the online world. Protect yourself and your family by developing a “hacker proof” system that can be done by changing your passwords often.