HOW TO TALK TO YOUR CHILDREN ABOUT INTERNET SAFETY & CYBERBULLYING
When I was a child, I remember playing freely in our neighborhood roaming from house to house. My friends and I would spend hours outside riding our bikes, playing on the swing set and simply doing what children were meant to do – be children!
Back then, my parents did not have much to worry about. They simply opened up the door and out I went. We knew our neighbors well and watched out for one another.
Today’s society is very different. Parents have to worry, not just about what’s happening outside their homes, but also what’s streaming inside their homes. We need to be just as savvy on the internet as our kids are. But some days it simply feels like this!
With the invention of the internet comes both the good and the bad. Personally, the internet has helped me reach thousands of fellow field trip fans and families throughout Southern California.
Websites such as Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook have also changed the way I connect with my family and friends. For example, my parents signed up for Facebook just to see new pictures of their grandchildren.
As Field Trip Boy and Field Trip Girl get older, they are spending more time on the internet for school and personal use. My son enjoys watching how-to-draw videos on YouTube, designing roller coasters on the iPad and playing Minecraft. Field Trip Girl likes to play games on the iPad and watch the movie “Frozen” over and over again.
Teaching our children about internet safety and cyberbullying has to be on the top of our lists.
Purchase or subscribe to an online security software program. My husband and I are currently looking into getting a software program for all of our gadgets. It is important that we protect our little ones’ eyes for as long as possible.
Teach your children about internet safety. With the help of AVG Technologies, my husband and I are on step two.
AVG Technologies, an online security company with over 187 million customers worldwide, has partnered with non-profit Childnet International to publish Magda & Mo, a new children’s e-book series on internet safety topics such as cyberbullying and safe searching.
Starring Magda & Mo, two curious kids who want to play online, the interactive books are designed for teachers, parents and kids to read together and learn about making good choices online.
By following Magda and Mo’s adventures and helping them make decisions along the way, children can earn “donuts” for making the right choices when it comes to using the Internet.
The first story is called Animishmash and the Cyber Bullfrog (for ages 7+). This click-or-tell story looks at how to deal with cyber-bullying and how to be a good friend online.
Magda and Mo are playing a cool new game called Animishmash. But Bill the Bullfrog keeps sending them mean messages online. What should the two friends do about it?
The second story is called The Pirate’s Donut (ages 3+). In this click-or-tell story you can help Magda and Mo safely search the internet, learn new things and avoid scary stuff online.
Mo’s tummy is rumbling and he wants some donuts. But why do donuts have holes? Maybe Magda and Mo will find the answer on their parents’ computer?
Childnet International also provides great online resources for parents and children. They offer a variety of games, activities and e-books to go along with the topic.
5 – 10 Year Olds: http://www.childnet.com/young-people/primary
11 – 18 Year Olds: http://www.childnet.com/young-people/secondary
Have a conversation with your children about cyberbullying.
1. Do not talk to the cyber bully after the bullying incident has occurred. By not talking to the bully, your child has already taken away a good portion of the bully’s power.
2. Un-friend and block the cyber bully from ALL of your child’s online accounts.
3. Report the cyber bully to all the websites where they have been harassing your child such as Facebook and Twitter.
4. If the harassment continues, report the cyber bully to your local authorities. There are several states with anti-bullying laws now on the books.
As Magna and Mo always says “ask before you click!”
To learn more about how to prevent cyberbullying, please visit http://www.pinterest.com/socalfieldtrips/how-to-prevent-cyber-bullying/
Be safe my friends!
Disclosure: This is not a sponsored post. All opinions are our own. Images used by permission.