Internet Parenting Resource – Connect Safely
Many of you have been asking for advice on keeping your children safe online. While doing some research, I came across a truly fantastic site full of information on that very subject. The site is called Connect Safely and it’s full of great articles on privacy and safety for your children and teens, including advice on Video Games, Cellphones, and an extremely comprehensive Parent’s Guide to Facebook.
The guides presented on this site have some great things to talk with your children about and very practical advice that’s presented in a way that’s easy for every parent to understand. Most of the suggestions help you learn to be able to set some boundaries, rules and codes of conduct for your child or teen, but still allow them a reasonable amount of freedom while online.
That approach seems to be a bit rare, most of the advice you find online speaks to using tools to lock down everything that your kid has access too, creating a safe “sandbox” for them to play in. While that can be effective, it’s sort of like preventing your kid from scraping their knee’s by never allowing them to ride a bike. No matter how diligent you are in setting hard limits on them, at some point kids are going to find a way around those fences. If you can help them develop good habits and really teach them why their safety and reputation are important, they’re more likely to make the right choices.
Take some time to read through the articles on this site. I’ve skimmed quite a few and read a few more in-depth, and plan to dig in to many more of them soon.