The internet has revolutionized the way we think and behave nowadays. Apart from keeping us connected with people who are poles apart, it provides us with a great source of information. To be honest, neither I nor my kids can imagine our lives without the Internet, but I was worried sick about how to save them from the dark side it holds. The commonly prevailing theft, pornography, and fake news on the Internet can be a hell of a lot more dangerous for your kids than you think.
Some parents think engaging kids in outdoor play and banning the use of the internet for them is a solution. But, it’s not! You can’t save your kids from using the Internet as it is everywhere. If they don’t use it at home, they will use it at school or at a friend’s place. The only thing you can do is aware them with the negative aspects and increase their maturity in the following ways.
1. Place your Computer in the Lounge
When your kids are below 15, avoid placing the computer in their rooms or anywhere private. Do not allow them laptops and install a common computer for them in the lounge or any shade structure in your home. You, too, might have to sacrifice a bit for them as they get attracted to devices when they see adults using them. In their presence, try to keep your laptops and tablets inside and use the common computer only.
2. Look at What they are Looking at
You don’t need to do it once they have grown up, but you have to be a little investigative when they are below 18. I try to browse through histories and my kids’ social media accounts to know what they are into. Once I found them browsing an inappropriate website, so I counseled them on how it can harm them.
3. Teach them Not to Publicize their Personal Information
Personal information is the most powerful tool for thieves and sexual predators for blackmailing and negative use. I have always taught my kids not to use their personal information including phone number, email address, photograph, passwords, and even real names on social media websites. Furthermore, aware them to only talk to people they know.
4. Block Unnecessary Material
Your kids may get access to some websites unintentionally. For example, they may reach some harmful pornographic websites while looking for their biology queries. You have to keep an eye and block such websites to keep them protected. They don’t know what they are looking at and it’s better they don’t till they grow up.
5. Be Friendly and Empathetic
The only way you can protect your kids from the negative aspects of the Internet is to be friendly with them. Don’t be too strict or bossy that they fear telling you things they experience. For instance, be frank enough to them so that they may open up to you in case they go through cyberbullying. That’s the only way you can protect your kids!