A couple of decades ago, most parents wouldn’t even consider letting their children use the internet. Their kids would be more than happy to run free outside, play with toys, or watch cartoons on television. There was nothing on the internet of any value to a young child.
But now everything has changed. You see toddlers with their own iPads and children of all ages posting for their friends on Instagram and Snapchat. Young boys spend all the time playing online video games like Fortnite, while the girls try to emulate the latest TikTok dances. And although there can be many benefits of computers and the internet for young people, there are also inherent dangers involved with the overconsumption of technology.
Tech addiction is an epidemic in the Western world, and young children are spending less time being active outdoors. As a result, obesity levels are rising and many youths are experiencing decreased academic performance and physical and mental health issues. There are also many dangers online that parents often aren’t aware of. There have been many cases of attempted child grooming online, and harmful subliminal messages inserted into seemingly innocuous games and videos.
As a parent, it is your responsibility to keep your child safe online. Of course, you could completely restrict their access to phones and computers, but in the modern world, this is rarely practical. Most school children need computers for homework, and phones for keeping in contact while they’re out and about. But what you can do is monitor and limit their internet usage. To help you protect your little ones, here are three ways you can keep your children safe online.
Talk to your child
The most effective action any parent can take to protect their children from online danger is to talk to them about the risks. Most children will simply see the internet as a source of entertainment and a way of communicating with their friends. They will most likely not be aware of the vast quantity of inappropriate content and unsavory characters out there. Once they are aware of the perils, they are likely to be a little more cautious about how they spend their time.
Limit technology consumption
Before smartphones existed, children were happy to be exploring the world and getting filthy. To prevent them from squandering their childhood staring at a screen, limit their device usage to a set period each day. Promote more wholesome hobbies like sports, reading books, and playing outdoors. Their fitness and mental health will skyrocket as a result, and their social skills will improve from interacting with other children in the real world.
Monitor their activity
How can you know your child is staying safe when you have no idea what they are doing? They are most likely just chatting to their friends and playing silly games, but you want to be sure. For peace of mind, download a monitoring app by Family Orbit onto their phones to keep track of their activity and confirm they are not accessing anything they shouldn’t.