The Benefits And Risks Of The Internet For Your Children

Depending on who you ask, the internet is either the greatest thing in the world or the bane of modern existence. The truth is somewhere in the middle. Let’s take a look at the impact it can have on your children, so you can mitigate the risks and maximize the benefits.

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The Benefits

Online learning is incredibly useful. If parents are unsure about how to teach something to their child, for example, a mathematical problem, they can reference various educational resources. Online classes for parents also allow many of them to continue their education while balancing work and family.

How To Maximize The Benefits

Create a list of the best educational references and save them in your bookmarks. So when homework or other questions arise, you can go straight to one of the resources you know are high quality.

The Risks

Children don’t know the difference between fact and fiction, which poses a number of potential risks. They could share personal information and put themselves at risk. It could be as simple as trying to sign up for a paid subscription to a website that lacks good IT security. Another potential risk is their reliance on the internet as a form of entertainment. Too much time in front of a screen is linked to poor academic performance and behavioral changes.

How To Mitigate The Risks

The easiest solution is to monitor and limit your children’s access to the internet. Have open conversations and discuss what they’re reading and viewing. This will not only help keep them safe, but allow them to start recognizing bias in news stories and different web pages.

Watch the videos they’re watching and tell them when something is fact and when it’s fiction. Discuss the lessons the stories are trying to teach them and how they compare to your beliefs. Be open with your children and teach them about the risks of the internet.

The discussion on sexual predators should be age appropriate, but you can start the conversation by emphasizing the importance of keeping your personal information private. Regarding financial information, teach your children never to enter a credit or debit card information online.

Disconnect “one touch” ordering on e-commerce sites so your child can’t order a bunch of toys to the house. Consider putting older children on an allowance, whether it be for a gaming platform or e-commerce site.

Then they’ll learn that if they overspend on game downloads, they can’t buy in-game weapons or credits to get to the next level faster. You could also sign up with an internet service provider that helps you to filter content, so you can monitor what your children see and interact with on the internet. To compare internet plans and find the best fit for your family, visit iSelect.

Remember to also consider the age of your child. Children under two shouldn’t be watching electronic media. Preschoolers should watch less than an hour a day of content on any screen, whether it’s television or a computer screen. Limit screen time for older children to two hours on school nights and three hours on days kids don’t have school. And make sure you encourage them to spend time away from the internet.

If you are interested in even more technology-related articles and information from us here at Bit Rebels, then we have a lot to choose from.

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