In this world of digital technology, what can you do to raise digital-savvy kids? Continue reading this to find awesome tips that will help you.
As true as the statement “the world is going digital” is, it is an understatement. 😃🤣
The world IS digital. We felt this more during the coronavirus pandemic.
EVERYTHING was online – Meetings, work, school, church/religious activities, etc. Even my last baby had his Naming Ceremony online with family and friends including our Pastor. 🤩🤣
This new generation, Gen Z, is the most digital generation of our time and age.
Many children know how to use laptops and phones at a very young age.
You need to watch my 1-year baby handling the phone. 😱😱
Many are already content creators with large followings, many engage with people from different countries and backgrounds on a daily basis.
Saying the world is a global village seems so cliché but it has never been truer.
There are so many positive things about the digitalization of the world.
For example, people now make money from any social media platform; you can make a change in society by using your voice…and social media platforms.
But like every good thing, there are disadvantages especially if said good thing is being abused.
The essence of raising children is for them to be socially acceptable.
This feat is more difficult now with the intrusion of the media.
Children now have online role models.
And cartoon role models too. LOL.
This article will tell you how to navigate through this digital world and raise very good children.
But before we go into that, there have been debates about how much screen/media time is too much for children.
First of all, screen time falls into four categories.
And they are not always unhealthy. But there has to be a limit and according to the WHO, there should be little or no screen time for under 5 children.
There are 4 Categories of Screen Time
This is just watching the TV, listening to music, Reading online or with a device, etc
This encompasses chatting, video calls and face times, using social media, etc.
This is browsing the internet, playing games, buying and selling, etc
This is using digital devices and some apps and platforms to make music, videos, art, etc.
10 Ways to Raise Digital-Savvy Kids
1) Be Digital Savvy:
You can’t teach something you don’t know about.
Be knowledgeable about the digital world.
As a parent, you need to be versatile in many things.
Know about the media and how it works.
Look for age-appropriate programs and social media pages that you can engage your child with.
Know how to use some digital devices.
2) Have Relevant Discussions About The Media with Your Children:
As a parent, you want your children to come to you if they have any questions or need help.
You want them to be comfortable enough to talk to you about anything.
One thing you need to talk with them about is the media.
Be familiar with the sites they usually visit, know their online friends, etc.
If you keep a social media account, discuss with them why you do and what you’re using it for.
Be ready to explain why you post some pictures and videos too.
3) Watch the media Together:
Watch videos and TV together.
This helps you to discuss certain things.
For example, you can ask your child how he/she feels about a particular video or picture, etc.
This is also important because you can tell your children to watch out for stereotypical words or descriptions for gender, race, and even religion.
In a world that frowns upon trans- and homophobia, teach your kids to not use derogatory words in describing them.
More also, watching a video with your kids is a good way to maintain healthy relationship with your children.
4) Create Media Together:
Do videos and take pictures together.
Engage in some online challenges too.
This way, you not only show them how to engage with the media, you actually get to spend quality time with them while also monitoring their social media.
5) Monitor Your Child’s Social Media:
Your child should trust you enough to follow you or to let you follow them.
And if you don’t have a social media account, your child should trust you enough to show you his/her social media feed.
As a parent, it’s your duty to know the kind of people following your child and who your child is following too.
Also, know the kind of mails he/she is subscribed to and channels he’s following.
You can change the settings of his social media to limit the number of people who see his posts.
6) Engage Your Child with Educative Media:
Set your child up with things that will actually impart knowledge to our child.
There are a lot of things you can learn from the media.
You can make your child learn to make things from social media, or show him/her some educational games.
There are motivational speakers for your teen to listen to, etc.
By all means, keep your children engaged especially during the holidays so that they will become digital savvy.
7) Teach Your Child How to Engage with Posts:
Always tell your child to be polite when engaging with people.
Anything that goes online never comes back.
Teach them to not say hurtful things to people or in the comment sections.
Teach them to not share some kinds of questionable pictures or videos online
This is one of the biggest issues with the digital world.
People hide behind their keyboards and say harmful things.
This can cause depression, anxiety and even suicidal thoughts.
The same way your child should tell you if anyone bullies them in the playground is the same way they should tell you if they’re being bullied online.
Tell them to always tell you if people say hurtful things to them or leave hateful comments on their posts.
Also, watch your child carefully for signs of depression or feelings of not being enough.
This is especially for teenagers who are more affected by cyberbullying.
Teenage is a critical age because they are trying to form an identity for themselves.
Don’t let the harmful media form their identities for them.
Don’t let the media tell them what it means to be a man or woman or a black man or white person or whatever.
There are harmful stereotypes out there.
Help your teen to have his/her understanding of the media.
Also, help in making sure that online people don’t bring down your teen’s self-esteem and make him question his worth.
9) Fake News:
There’s fake news everywhere.
Ensure that you teach your child to not spread any news until he/she is sure that it’s a fact.
Children and teenagers still believe their parents over the media especially when it comes to news.
As a parent, know the real news and tell your children.
They’ll take yours over what they see in the media.
This word is a combination of phone and snubbing.
This is just when people snub you because they’re using their phones or other devices.
Teach your children to know when to put the phone down, put off the TV and close the laptop.
Teach them the importance of face-to-face conversations.
Let them know that it’s important to be present when people are talking to them.
Tell them that many memories are not created online and some times, the most important things or people are offline.
Raising children in this world as it is today takes a lot of skill.
The essence of raising digital-savvy kids is to ensure that they have the right relationship with the media.
You do this by teaching them how to minimize social media risks and how to navigate the digital world positively.
PS: I do not encourage introducing Children under 13 years to Social Media. The starting age for most Social Media channels is 13 years.
Remember that motherhood is a journey made easy when we have the right people in our corner. 🧡
That said, click on this link to take you to the amazing world of motherhood http://bit.ly/AMumandMoreFBFamily
Keep being #fabulous💋