parenting across the digital Divide

Do you ever feel confused when it comes to understanding our children’s technology?

If you answered “yes”, you can rest easy that you are not alone. Social media has quickly become an ingrained part of our children’s lives, with recent compiled data showing that 50% of parents willingly admit that their children know more about technology and the Internet than we do. This isn’t easy information to digest when we consider how connected our kids are to their devices and social media.

Our youngest generations do not remember a time before cell phones and high speed Internet. Children as young as three and four spend over six hours on the Internet daily and that time increases as children age. To further compound this issue, the age group of children between five to fifteen show an increase in digital connectivity. In 2011, only 7 percent of children were using tablets, but that number increased to 51 percent using smart devices in 2013.

Fast forward to 2015 and that usage undoubtedly has increased proportionally. They have had the world at their fingertips by using Smartphones, tablets, laptop computers, android devices and more! There is an influx of apps and sites, which can leave parents flummoxed and scratching their heads to stay informed about what activities their children are up to on social media.

As social media has evolved, many teens are leaving the super giant Facebook in favor of more obscure apps that parents don’t frequent. These apps range from disappearing messages, shared images, and anonymous features that can spin a parent’s head around. In this day and age, it can be difficult for parents to keep up to date on the ever changing trends and apps. 

As parents, we need to stay informed to ensure our children’s safety as they navigate the digital world. Cyberbullying, sexting, predators, stalking, and identity theft are all concerns our children will face when they log on to social media. Here is some vital information to help you actively monitor your child’s activity:

SocialParenting

By Erica Buteau

Change Agent. Daydream Believer. Maker. Creative. Likes love, peace and Jeeping. Dislikes winter, paper cuts and war. She/Her/Hers.

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