Dealing With the Cyber Tsunami | Part 5

Dealing With the Cyber Tsunami | Part 5

Feb 28

Things Parents Can Do

We have talked all week about some things that parents can do to help with the cyber invasion of the home.  Setting up boundaries such as how much time is spent, where the devices and computer can be used, and modeling the behavior we expect. For the “how to’s” of monitoring the internet usage, check out our series on Privacy vs. Protection by clicking here.

There are other things that parents can do such as making sure to stay up on current cyber trends.   If you don’t attempt to be current it will be difficult to monitor what your child is doing online, as well as make informed decisions if they are asking to do things.  Make sure to interrupt sedentary periods with periods of activity.  If your child has been online chatting or gaming for a period, send them outside for some exercise.  Better yet go out with them for a walk. Introduce activities that challenge or force your child to think.  Family game nights are great for this.  When purchasing a toy or activity for your child, think through what it does for their development.  Even simple things can be helpful like encouraging your child to help you in the kitchen, rather then getting them out of your hair and occupied by devices.

 

These are just a few ideas of things a parent can do, for more listen to today’s podcast.

 
Dealing With the Cyber Tsunami | Part 4

Dealing With the Cyber Tsunami | Part 4

Feb 27

The Myth of Multitasking

Today’s technology has given us the opportunity to do more and all at the same time.  The problem is it was originally thought that technology would give us more free time.  That by being able to accomplish more it would give us more time to think, time to be with family etc.  Instead, it has caused society as a whole to cram more in.  This lifestyle of “multitasking” has caused us to be more distracted and allows us to not think, just do.  A great example of this is because I can now check my email on my phone, I will catch myself reading an email while my child is asking me a question.  It is easy to half pay attention to both.  Then I miss what my child what truly asking me as well as some times having to reread the email.  Sadly, I can even be frustrated with my child for interrupting me.  When if I wasn’t attempting to “multitask” and paid attention to the task at hand, then there would be no feeling of frustration towards my child.  I would truly be able to listen to what they were saying.  If we aren’t careful we can do this in a lot of areas.

Isaac Newton said, “there is a need for each of us to mature by transitioning from youthful distraction to the discipline of mature long term attention.”  Dr Archibald Hart applies it to our digital era when he writes, “What is unfortunate about our digital world is that unless its use is disciplined, where parents take control of their child’s digital world, it can never develop the level of attention that maturity demands.”

It is important for us as parents to set the example and not spend our lives attempting to multitask and miss out on the task at hand, our children.

 

Listen to today’s podcast for more on this.

 
Dealing With the Cyber Tsunami | Part 3

Dealing With the Cyber Tsunami | Part 3

Feb 26

Setting The Example

In putting boundaries around the cyber influence of our family, we as parents must lead the way in what this should look like.  This may be a difficult thing for some of us.  There has even been a new term created “Nomophobia”, no mobile phone phobia.  How many of us would turn around if we left our phone on the counter, probably most? Our smart phones have become such a part of us; a study has shown that some people experience phantom vibration when their phone isn’t even in their pocket. There have been several videos and stories circulating on social media showing how much we truly miss because of our smart phone obsessions.  We must set the boundaries for several reasons. First, for the example to our children of where the boundaries should be.  Second, we would never want to miss a moment of our child’s life because of distraction.  Third, we would never want to communicate that there is something out there that is more important then God and our family.

So what do the boundaries look like?  There must be a time set where there are no interruptions, for example car time, dinner time and family time.  There can be a place where every one’s devices are put up to charge at night, parents included.  We have all been somewhere and observed a family out to dinner, all sitting on their devices and not really together.  Don’t miss out on these precious years we have with our children! Make sure to set the boundaries for your home!

 

Listen to today’s podcast for more on this topic.

 
Dealing With the Cyber Tsunami | Part 2

Dealing With the Cyber Tsunami | Part 2

Feb 25

It’s A Parent’s Responsibility

It is a parent’s job to put the cyber world in its proper place in the family.  This is one of those important areas to sit and have a parental staff meeting about.  It must be decided the where, how, when and what for the internet will be used.  Like we have stated there are some beneficial uses, such as schoolwork.   Researching for things is much easier when the internet can be properly utilized.  Teachers have even been know to set up web-pages for big projects so kids can work as groups or use it as a resource.  There are even online tutors and countless supplemental learning resources can be found.  We have to be careful not to through the baby out with the bath water but that baby does have to be monitored.  Start with the question of where is internet use acceptable.  In a child’s bedroom is not the best place. It needs to be a family computer out in the open set up for accountability.  Secondly, how can your kids access the internet? Is it ok for them to use the internet on smart phones, game systems and tablets, or will it only be on the computer?  Next will be the when.  Set up boundaries and specific times especially with your teens, for whom internet usage will have a social aspect.  Phones should not be allowed in the room at night or at the dinner table, for example.   It is our responsibility to set up a plan for how the internet will be used but not abused in our homes.

 

Listen to today’s podcast for more on this topic.

 
Dealing With the Cyber Tsunami | Part 1

Dealing With the Cyber Tsunami | Part 1

Feb 24

The Research Is In

Why should parents take charge of the cyber input that is invading the life of their children?  First, the cyber world is here to stay.  Secondly, it is so dominant in our culture that it needs to be looked at.  Third, research is now coming out in volumes stating that while there is the good impact, there is also damaging impact and a potentially devastating impact.  This digital invasion came so fast in every area of our lives, we embraced it without thinking.  It was almost forced on us; it led us rather than us leading and controlling it

There has been a societal shift that has affected the day to day of our children.   First, it was television that drew kids indoors, then gaming, now it is the draw of the social aspect of the internet.  This impacts the way kids interact with each other.  Instead of going outside to play with friends they can now meet up in the virtual gaming world via the internet.  This has an impact on everything from the social skills of our children to their physical health.  We will spend the rest of this week looking into these dynamics and how they impact our families and children, be sure to check back!

 

As always listen to today’s podcast for more insight on this topic.