I am frequently asked for advice on how to monitor students in the modern world of technology. Entering the Thanksgiving recess, I thought that it would be appropriate to share some thoughts around working with young people to appropriately (and safely) utilize the powerful tools they have before them.
This past week a mother spoke to me at length about our 1 : 1 laptop program at MHS and the negatives associated with some of the programs on our computers (Our conversation, like many I’ve had, focused on ichat and chatting). What I realized is that she wasn’t aware of what I had come to take for granted, that there are what seems like an unlimited number of chat-like programs on the internet, and that blocking one does nothing to deal with the larger issue of student online behavior (I was able to find 37 free chat sites that require only an email to register in a 10 minute Google search).
Of course there is no easy answer here; the scope of what parents need to be aware of has grown considerably in this new digital age. In an attempt to support our parents and raise awareness, the MHS faculty and I will periodically share resources and information vai this blog. Please share with us what you do and do not find useful. Share also the successful approaches that you have used with young people. Together we can provide them with the tools necessary to navigate through this digital world of the 21st century.
Holiday Update: 5 Ways to Unplug over the Holidays http://www.commonsensemedia.org/new/5-ways-unplug-your-holidays?utm_source=newsletter12.15.11&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=feature1
On Guard Online – A variety of resources just for parents. http://onguardonline.gov/features/feature-0002-featured-info-parents
Ask the Mediatrician – Parent and pediatrician Dr. Michael Rich and his team of experts answer your questions about media and kids’ health. http://cmch.typepad.com/mediatrician/
Netsmartz – This online site is useful as it breaks cyber-issues into topics like Blogging, Cell Phones, Gaming… etc. http://www.netsmartz.org/EmailChatAndIM
Local Organizations supporting this work:
GWC4CY– Greater Waterville Communities for Children and Youth. http://www.youthmatter.net/gwc4cy.org/Welcome.html