Should I actively limit and monitor my child's use of the internet and other media in the home?
Australian psychologist, Dr. Michael Carr-Gregg, says that computers can lure children into situations they are not equipped to handle. He refers to the internet as 'Cyberia', likening it to a new country and describes cyber kids as early settlers. He asks, "If you had a seven-year-old would you dump him in a red-light district in Amsterdam?"
- Award your children 12 half hour tokens on a Sunday night each week. Each child can use these tokens on the computer, watching TV, talking on the phone, or playing with a Play Station or Nintendo. Parents may use a timer and strictly adhere to the time. Siblings tend to ‘spill the beans’ on each other if there is any cheating.
- Install the computer in a communal area and make sure you look over your child’s shoulder from time to time.
- If you allow your child to establish a profile page on a social networking site, then check it regularly to ensure personal safety issues are not being violated.
- Turn off all media equipment and insist that dinner is eaten at the table, and encourage communication.
- Ensure your children get outside as much as possible and maintain friendships where regular communication takes place and imaginations are fed.
Source: Forefront Families "Implementing Boundaries for Cyberkids"
Browse Quick Facts
- Do most parents communicate with their children and adolescents about internet use and risks?
- How can I communicate with my child about internet use?
- How can I influence my child's use of the internet at school and at the homes of peers?
- What are the recommended ages for exposure to screen and computer time?