Parents have always worried about their children, but modern parents have additional concerns to occupy them. With the wide spread use of cell phones, computers and social networking sites, parents have a whole new set of problems to protect their children from. Yet, technology can also be a valuable tool to keep children safe from traditional fears as well. Here is a list of common sense tips to keep your child safe in the computer age.
Whether your child is six or sixteen, monitoring his or her internet activity is crucial to preventing your child from being taken advantage of by online predators. The first key is making sure that you have access to any social networking profiles or games so that you can see who your child is speaking with online. You should also teach your child to never reveal personal information over the internet. Profiles on sites like Facebook are a goldmine for potential predators. Make sure your child isn't giving away too many details.
Safety and Technology
You can use a number of technological solutions to keep your children safe. If you child is old enough to carry a cell phone, many can feature apps that a child can use as a personal alarm that will alert you and call 911 if her or she feels threatened or if he or she is in a dangerous situation. Apps like Silent Bodyguard send out an alert to your child's contact list in case of an emergency.
Sports and Recreation
As summer comes ever closer, many children will fill their days with a variety of sports activities. Talk to your kids about the real dangers inherent in these sports. Some kids spend so much time video gaming that they don't realize they can truly be hurt. Be sure that your child has the proper equipment for activities like helmets for biking and life jackets for boating and water-skiing. Pools can be a source of danger for all children. Any child under the age of sixteen or a child that is not a strong swimmer should be supervised by an adult at all times. Small children should never been left unattended around pools, even if they are not swimming.
You have probably already told your child about the danger in talking to strangers, but you may need to redefine the role of stranger for online activities. Kids may not realize an online person they have been interacting with for a long time is just as unknown as someone they have never met before. People that mean to harm children can be very convincing, so you need to reaffirm that your child understands that it is only okay to speak to strangers when you are there to supervise.
Worry is a part of parenting, but new concerns about how to protect children in the technology age can be overwhelming. In general, using common sense and teaching children to be cautious can do a lot to help keep him or her safe. AuPair.org has more helpful tips and can help you find a trustworthy caregiver for your kids.
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