How to raise a Digitally Responsible Children
Mom when can I have a tablet/phone? Mom when can I have WhatsApp, Facebook, youtube channel? These are the requests I have received regularly from my daughter for the past 3 years. In the early years, the answer was simple: “You are still too young for that.”
In 2016, when I was having trouble finishing up my thesis, I spent hours and hours on social networks, and one day I came across a motivational video by Eric Thomas (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GLcJHC9J7l4), where he says: “many of you would be more successful if you switched off your phones. At that moment, I thought that did not apply to me, but then, out of curiosity, I decided to time how much time I spent on the Internet doing nothing, I did not include the time that I was productively busy. I was shocked by the result and the wasted time. But I was even more shocked by the difficulty I had in keeping myself off social networks. I am an adult, now imagine how difficult it would be for my daughter who is still a child and therefore has no matured sense of responsibility.
The danger that the digital world brings with it, such as digital bullying and pedophilia, can negatively affect the development of a child if she/he is exposed to the digital world without proper preparation. One of the reasons for my resistance is the fact that I am well aware of the negative effects that poor use of technology can cause to an adult. Now imagine a child? Many of us are not more productive and successful because of the hours we’ve wasted on social networks, doing nothing. As a consequence time management, organization and planning of the different responsibilities are negatively affected. The weird thing about this is that it happens unconsciously.
I wanted to take away the tablet but, after careful consideration, I decided not to. In fact, it would not take long for her to have access to one of these electronic gadgets. If it would not happen at home, it would definitely happen at the school or at a friend’s house. Therefore, I decided that she could keep the tablet, being the only device she has until today, but with restrictions. I have determined a maximum time that she can spend on the tablet per day. We have also talked a lot about the reasons that led me to stipulate these rules. My daughter has a habit of asking “the why” for each rule, so what I’ve been doing is talking and letting her know the reasons why I think it’s too early for her to use these social networks.
I hope you liked the article and feel free to leave your comments in the comments section bellow. Also, do not forget to dream and always fight for the realization of your dreams.