We’re often asked by parents about e-safety for their children. Parents want to ensure children are able to use technology in a positive way for schools work, creativity and socialising with friends, but they also want to keep their children safe from inappropraite sites, unwanted attention and cyberbullying. We asked Dawn Pearce who lives in Shrewsbury, has a daughter aged ten, and owns 1to1 IT Training to share some simple tips.
1: Keep internet enabled devices in a main family room!
The simplest way to this is keep the PC/Laptop in the kitchen or living room. This probably obvious to any parent by now but hardly anyone I know with children has a bulky PC; most have very lightweight laptops or a tablet. These are very easy for your child to sneak off out of out of sight while you’re engrossed in your favourite TV programme! So be aware of the different web devices your children use.
2: Keep an eye on the clock!
If you’re worried your children are spending too much time online, you can try limiting how much time they’re allowed to spend on the internet, or give them set times in the week when they can go online. The easiest way I found to this is set up a separate user account on your pc for your child and use parental controls which can be set to lock a child out at certain times of the day… I use mine set at before and during school hours and locked until 4, and then locked again at 6pm allowing plenty of time for homework and a quick game!
3: Set ground rules and talk about them with the children after computer time!
Be clear with your children about what you expect them to do and not to do online, so they know from the outset what the rules are. You can also ask them to show you the kinds of things they spend their time doing online. Make sure you discuss with your child the games they play, the searches they’ve done and the things they’ve learned! Remember to tell your child to SHOW YOU ANY MESSAGES that may have upset them so you can give advice and guidance to your child.
4: Stay up to date!
There’s not much point in setting rules for your child if you don’t know how to use the latest game or software OR in the worst case, how to use the computer itself! Keep yourself tech savvy, after all parents know everything right?! If in doubt ask other parents for advice or find a course or private tuition suitable for you and your child’s needs.
5: Don’t spend the hour looking over their shoulder!
Let older primary age children have free reign of the internet and the computer (within parental controls, keep safe search on and check pages visited afterwards) you wouldn’t do it if they were reading a book!
For further information about keeping children safe online get in touch, we’ve got a wide range of information we can send you.
For further information on 1to1ITTraining visit http://www.1to1ittraining.co.uk/