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  • Resources for Keeping Your Kids Safe Online

    These days, a variety of resources exist for families SocialMediaImage concerned about navigating the intersection between parenting and social media. Most families understand the benefits to using social media. Kids can interact with their peers, do homework online and learn new skills. The last is increasingly important as work becomes more Internet-based and many people now work with colleagues who they may never meet in person.

    The collaborative nature of the Web teaches kids skills they will used for the rest of their lives. Of course there are some risks to using the Internet and we would like to help parents find a way to let their kids enjoy the benefits of using the web without bumping up against its uglier side.

    The burden of helping kids surf the web in a safe manner falls on the parents. Studies have  shown that parents who actively monitor their kids online habits provide a far safer Web environment for their children. For kids, often the mere knowledge that a parent is watching modifies behavior. For more information about how parents can create a safe surfing environment for their children, we have some recommended reading.

    • Web M.D. provides a fantastic source for plain English writing about how kids can use the Internet safely. Although this articles written specifically for teens, adults should read it with their teens, so they can discuss the article. Most of keeping kids safe online is about communication and the more ways you have to chat with your child in a non-threatening manner with your kid about what she is doing online, the more you can help her safely navigate the Web. Discussing the contents of this article opens up a dialogue about what your kids do online.
    • While children under 13 years of age are not permitted to sign up for Facebook and many other popular social media sites, the simple truth is that nearly one in three preteens has a presence on the Web. It is especially important to instill good web habits and young children. Safekids.com has provided a simple checklist for parents to talk over when discussing the Internet with young children.