Parents Universal Resource Experts – Sue Scheff – Military Schools

oakridgeAs a parent that had a son graduate a very prestigious Military School, I know the firsthand what an honor and privilege he was given. Many parents think of Military Schools as a punishment or where the “troubled” kids go – that is simply a myth. My son was accepted in accordance with his GPA as well as letters of references and interviewing with the school. It is almost as rigid as applying for some colleges. To further my opinion of Military Schools, when my son interviewed and applied to Universities, all the Admissions Directors were extremely impressed with his schooling at a Military School  and was accepted to all the colleges he applied to.

Has your child mentioned military academies to you? Have they expressed an interest in attending such a school? If so, you as a parent have an obligation to listen, and more importantly to help them make the right decision.  Many ADD/ADHD  students do very well in Military Schools.

A military school teaches various ages (middle school, high school, or both) in a manner that includes military traditions and training in military subjects. The military is a prominent force in America today, and with so much press it is very easy for a child to become exposed to this type of education as a viable option in their own lives. While this is perfectly acceptable on its own, like many of life’s choices it needs to be considered fully before a commitment is made. There are many factors that go into choosing the type of schooling that is appropriate for your child, and it is important that you and your child approach the subject together, as the both of you will have to reap the consequences of this decision in the future.

It is advisable to assess honestly the needs of your child, the requirements that will be placed upon them in a military school and what you as a parent bring to the mix. With many students the structure and positive discipline that military schools  offer are very beneficial. It not only encourages them to become the best they can be, it enhances them to grow into mature respectable young men and women. Military schools and academies offer a student the opportunity to reach their highest academic potential as well as build up their self-esteem to make better choices in today’s society, within a very rigid and disciplined framework. It is this framework that forms the backbone of the military school experience, and one of the chief distinctions between military educations and those of other schools. It is important to note that this structure will suit some students more than others, and this will largely determine a child’s chances of success in a military school setting. Military schools can give your child the vision to reach their goals and dreams for their future. The high level of academics combined with small class sizes create a strong educational background from which they grow into productive, happy adults.

If you have questions for me, please visit www.helpyourteens.com – and email or call me. Second semester is starting soon, it is a great opportunity to see if your child is a good candidate for Military School.

954-349-7260

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Sue Scheff – Parenting teens – Learning about Video Games

Do you know about the video games your kids just received for the holidays?  Be an educated parent – keep informed.  Connect with Kids offers great parenting tips to help you.

Source: Connect with Kids www.connectwithkids.com

Violent Video Games

“You can do anything. Just try to kill him.”

– T.J Trimmer, 12-year-old video game player

12-year-old T. J. Trimmer is playing one of his favorite video games- Mortal Kombat.

The goal, he says simply, is to beat your opponent. “You can do anything,” T.J. says, his fingers frantically manipulating dials and buttons. “Just try to kill him. Like right now I’m attacking this guy with, like, punches and kicks. There are all these special moves that you can use…You attack your opponent….it’ll do more damage to him when you have one of (these) weapons.”

But according to new research from Iowa State University, T.J. isn’t just hurting his opponents.

Researchers studies over 1,500 kids and found that the children who played violent video games were more aggressive afterwards than those who did not.

“They’re not just releasing aggression,” says child psychiatrist Dr. Adolph Casal. “They’re practicing aggression. When we practice something, we get good at it. If we don’t practice something, we don’t get good at it. So spending a considerable amount of time in an aggressive, violent situation on a daily basis, is going to improve our aggression skills.”

Of course, T.J. disagrees. “Like this way, you take your anger out on someone else, but you don’t really take it out on someone. You can take it out on this.”

Experts say parents need to set rules about which games they will allow their children to play and for how long. 

Tips for Parents

The video-game industry has undergone a dramatic change since the birth of Super Mario, the happy acrobat who once thrilled children for hours as they played with their Nintendo systems.  Today, dark and adult-themed games like Grand Theft Auto and Mortal Kombat are outselling kids’ games.  Even Nintendo has switched gears by offering games with edgier subjects like the zombies featured in Resident Evil.

Why has the landscape of the video-game industry undergone such drastic change?  Consider these statistics from the Entertainment Software Association:

  • The average game player is 35 years old and has been playing games for 13 years.
  • The average age of the most frequent game purchaser is 40 years old.
  • Forty percent of all game players are women. In fact, women over the age of 18 represent a significantly greater portion of the game-playing population (33 percent) than boys age 17 or younger (18 percent).
  • In 2008, 26 percent of Americans over the age of 50 played video games, an increase from nine percent in 1999.
  • Thirty-six percent of heads of households play games on a wireless device, such as a cell phone or PDA, up from 20 percent in 2002.

In its annual report at the end of 2008, the consumer watchdog organization the National Institute on Media and the Family (NIMF) gave the video-game industry nearly straight-A’s, with particularly high grades in the rating system and retail policies.

Parents, on the other hand, scored an “incomplete” by NIMF, due mainly to their lack of attention to the ratings system and because most don’t use the parental control features on game consoles.

As a parent, how can you prevent your child from becoming exposed to violent or sexually explicit media?  You can start by familiarizing yourself with the video game rating system. The Entertainment Software Rating Board (ESRB) rates every video and computer game for age appropriateness (located on the front of the packaging) and, when appropriate, labels games with content descriptions.  The ESRB’s current rating standard is as follows:

  • E:  Everyone
  • T:  Teens (13 and older)
  • M:  Mature audiences (17 and older)
  • AO:  Adults only

Children Now, a research and action organization, offers these additional tips for helping you to choose the right video games for your child:

  • Know your child.  Different children handle situations differently.  Regardless of age, if your child becomes aggressive or unsettled after playing violent video games, don’t buy games with violence in them.  Likewise, if your child likes playing games with characters that look like her or him, purchase games with characters that fit the bill.
  • Read more than the ratings.  While the ESRB ratings can be helpful, they do not tell the whole story.  Some features that you may consider violent or sexual may not be labeled as such by the ESRB.  In addition, the ESRB does not rate games for the positive inclusion of females or characters of color.  The language on the packaging may give you a better idea of the amount and significance of violence and sexuality and the presence of gender and racial diversity or stereotypes in the game.
  • Go online.  The ESRB website provides game ratings as well as definitions of the rating system.  In addition, you can visit game maker and distributor websites to learn more about the contents of a game.  Some have reviews that will provide even more information about the game.
  • Rent before you buy.  Many video rental stores also rent video games and consoles.  Take a trial run before you purchase a game. 
  • Talk to other parents.  Find out which games other parents like and dislike as well as which games they let your child play when he or she visits their house.  This is a good way to learn about the games that your child enjoys and those that other parents approve of, and to let other parents know which games you do not want your child playing.
  • Play the games with your child.  Know what your child is being exposed to and how he or she reacts to different features in the games.
  • Talk about what you see.  If your child discovers material that he or she finds disturbing or that you find inappropriate, talk about it.  This is a great opportunity to let your child know what your values are as well as to help him or her deal with images that may be troubling.
  • Set limits.  If you are worried that your child spends too much time playing video games, limit the amount of time or specify the times of day that video games can be played.
  • Put the games in a public space.  Just as with the Internet, keep your game consoles and computers in public family space so that you can be aware of the material your child is viewing.
  • Contact the game makers.  If you find material that you think is offensive or inappropriate, let the people who make and sell the games know about it.  Likewise, let game makers know if you think that a game provides healthy messages or images.  They do care what you think!

To make your search easier, the NIMF cites the following video games that are either positive for children or contain negative images for children to avoid:

Positive games for your child:

  • Guitar Hero World Tour
  • Rock Band 2
  • Rock Revolution
  • Spider-Man: Web of Shadows
  • Shaun White Snowboard

Games that are inappropriate for your child:

  • Blitz: The League II
  • Dead Space
  • Fallout 3
  • Far Cry 2
  • Gears of War 2
  • Legendary
  • Left 4 Dead
  • Resistance 2
  • Saints Row 2
  • Silent Hill: Homecoming

References

  • Children Now
  • Entertainment Software Rating Board
  • Federal Trade Commission
  • Interactive Digital Software Association
  • Iowa State University
  • National Institute on Media and the Family

Sue Scheff: Teens and the Economy

Layoffs Impact Christmas

Source: Connect with Kids

“It’s very, very tight at the end of the month.”

– Tom Hannaford, unemployed father

The telephone rings in Tom Hannaford’s in-home office. “Visual Solutions. Tom Hannaford,” he answers.

Hannaford is an independent contractor, but he is currently out of work.

“It’s really, really slow,” Hannaford says. “That little extra cushion that I bring in is not there, so it’s very, very tight at the end of the month.”

Hannaford has tried to shield his children from his troubles, but they still understand on a very basic level what’s happening.

“He’s looking for another job because nobody has any work for him to do,” his 9-year old daughter Mary says.

It has been a tough year for the American workforce. More than 10 million people are out of work, hundreds of thousands of them laid off since the recession began last September.

For many people, the loss of a job translates into a less plentiful holiday season.

“We’re gonna make the sacrifices that we have to make to get them some special things,” Hannaford says. “Would we get them as many things as we might otherwise? Maybe not.”

Layoffs can be stressful and scary for adults and children. Experts suggest that parents explain their job situation to their children. Open and honest communication can be reassuring. As far as the holiday season is concerned: Focus on the family, not the gifts.

“Make it exciting for them to have this time together,” advises psychiatrist Dr. John Lochridge. “Downplay the gifts … and the activities become substitutes for gifts that are actually more valuable.”

However tight times are, experts tell parents to stay positive because their children are watching and learning.

“The kids need to see that you’re not giving up. You’re gonna keep trying,” Dr. Lochridge says.

Hannaford remains hopeful. “I’ve got enough faith to know that something’s out there. Something will come my way, and the economy hopefully is gonna turn around.”

Tips for Parents

Will the recession cause Americans to spend less on their children’s presents this Christmas? According to a recent survey by the American Research Group, the answer is yes. The average projected spending for this year is $431, down just 50 percent from last year.

Unemployment is difficult for the entire family, especially during the Christmas season. A laid-off textile worker in Georgia told the American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations (AFL-CIO), “The thing I hated most was telling my kids that things are going to be a little tight for awhile.” If you find yourself without a job this Christmas, the AFL-CIO offers some advice to keep in mind:

Your spouse and children may feel as helpless as you do.
Talk about your problems and plans with your family.
Children generally sense tension in the home. Explain your unemployment situation to them, and include them in developing your plans to deal with it.
Plan and work together as a family to reduce household costs.
Children can help by delaying requests for expensive extras.
By working a part-time job on weekends, teens can help reduce their parents’ financial pressure. This enables each member of the family to take positive steps to help.
Receiving fewer presents at Christmas may leave some children feeling deprived and depressed. However, parents can remind their children that Christmas is not just a season of receiving; it’s also a time of giving. Children may feel better about their own situation if they focus on ways to help others who are less fortunate. Consider these ideas to help children learn about the importance of giving:

Encourage your children to choose one item from their Christmas or birthday wish lists and donate it to a less-fortunate child.
Help your children donate a portion of their allowances and birthday money to the charity of their choice.
Instead of exchanging duplicate gifts, have children donate one of the items to charity.
Organize a food drive in your neighborhood. Even small children can help deliver and collect bags.
Organize a toy, book or clothing drive.
Help your children write letters or draw pictures to mail to the elderly or others in town who are not able to get out much.
Volunteer to read to the blind.
Walk, brush, feed and clean pets at a rescue shelter.

As a family, spend some time volunteering at a food kitchen. Let children help fix plates and clear the tables.

Work together to make baked goods as a donation to a church, community or charity fair.
Volunteer with Habitat for Humanity. Volunteers are needed to build, paint, cook and serve food.

Visit a local nursing home and “Adopt a Grandparent.” Newborns and toddlers can come along to provide company and lots of hugs. Older children can read to residents and put on plays or skits.

References
AFL-CIO
American Research Group, Inc.
The Gallup organization

Parents Universal Resource Experts – Sue Scheff – Teen Depression and the Holidays

teendepressionWe hear about many people that are suffering this year with saddness and depression.  Whether it is an economy that leaves us frustrated we can’t give our kids what we would like to, or simply the feeling of hopefulessness.

Teens can suffer too.  Teen Depression can lead to negative behavior and sometimes worse.

Learn more about Teen Depression.

Teenage depression is more than just bad moods or broken hearts; it is a very serious clinical illness that will affect approximately 20% of teens before they reach adulthood. Left untreated, depression can lead to difficult home situations, problems at school, drug abuse, and worse, violence toward themselves and others.

Certain young teens suffer from depression as result of situations surrounding their social or family life, but many are succeptable to the disease regardless of race, gender, income level or education. It is very important for parents to keep a watch on their teens – and to maintain a strong level of communication. Understanding the causes and warning signs of the illness can help parents prevent their teens from falling in to depression.

Learn more about surviving Teen Depression in Gary E. Nelson’s  book, A Relentless Hope: Suviving the Storm of Teen Depression.

Parents Universal Resource Experts – Sue Scheff – Teen Eating Disorders

eatingdisorderAs the holidays are here, parents should be aware of their teens and tweens concerns with body image.  Today’s peer pressure compounded with Internet Images of what a teen should look like, can add stress and frustration to a young teen (both girls and boys). 

Eating Disorders can sometimes be hard to recognize.  As a parent, it is important to be informed and know the warning signs.

Here is a great article from Connect with Kids  from this week’s parenting articles and tips:

“I would never want to look at one. I think that would be really depressing to tell you the truth.”

– Mary Hardin, 14 years old

What Mary doesn’t want to see, to millions others is just a few key words and mouse clicks away.

“Who’s the skinniest and how can they stay the skinniest (or) here’s how you can have only one thing to eat all day or how you can survive on water and gum,” explains Bryna Livingston, a licensed clinical social worker who specializes in eating disorders.

Livingston is referring to pro-anorexia websites – where girls are applauded for losing weight and surviving hunger – that are emerging on the Internet. On many such sites, anorexics journal thoughts and feelings and even post pictures of their thin celebrity idols.

“It’s a pseudo-support group, and the problem is you’re not really getting support,” says Livingston. “You’re feeding a competition. You’re feeding a disease, and you’re feeding what you want to hear so you don’t have to make any changes.”

For Mary Hardin, change was hard. She struggled with anorexia for three years. These websites, she says, spell danger. “I think (the websites) could have really made me worse and (made me) fall more into my eating disorder and encouraged me more,” she says. “That’s the last thing I needed was to be encouraged to be in an eating disorder.”

Experts say parents of anorexics have to show tough love, especially if their child is being enticed by these Internet sites. “I’d turn off the computer. I’d get it out of the house,” says Livingston.

Mary’s advice: “Listen to who you trust. Do you trust your family and your friends, or do you trust these people (on the Internet) that you don’t even know that are trying to give you lessons about your life?”

Luckily, Mary avoided the lure of anorexia websites when she was struggling with her illness. After years of therapy and family support, she says she is now healed. “It is possible to recover and to be a healthy girl with a happy life after it all,” she says. “There is hope to get through it.”

Tips for Parents

Many dangerous places exist in cyberspace, especially for those with body image difficulties. A quick, easy Google search can produce a long list of pro-anorexia and pro-bulimia websites – places where those who suffer from eating disorders (ED) support each other and establish a sense of community. There are at least 100 active pro-anorexia and pro-bulimia sites. Some statistics state that several of these sites have accumulated tens of thousands of hits. Many sites treat eating disorders as lifestyle choices, rather than the illnesses they truly are. Most personify anorexia (“Ana”) and bulimia (“Mia”) into companions – individuals one can look to for guidance and strength.

The medical community classifies eating disorders as mental illnesses. Experts say girls with eating disorders focus on their bodies in a misguided bid to resolve deeper psychological issues, believing that they can fix their inner troubles by achieving a perfect outside. Eating disorder specialists say pro-anorexia sites are particularly dangerous since those suffering from the disease are usually in deep denial and cling to the illness to avoid dealing with its psychological underpinnings. Websites that glorify eating disorders make treatment increasingly difficult.

  • Eating disorders have the highest mortality rate of any mental illness.
  • There are an estimated 7 million females and 1 million males suffering from eating disorders in the United States.
  • The Harvard Eating Disorders Center estimates that 3 percent of adolescent women and girls have anorexia, bulimia or binge-eating disorders.
  • Four-of-five 13-year-old girls have attempted to lose weight.
  • One study showed that 42 percent of first- through third-grade girls want to be thinner.

About 1 percent of females between 10 and 20 have anorexia nervosa. Between 2 percent and 3 percent of young women develop bulimia nervosa. Almost half of all anorexics will develop bulimia or bulimic patterns.
Without treatment, up to 20 percent of people with serious eating disorders die. With treatment, the mortality rate falls to 2 to 3 percent. The recovery rate with treatment is about 60 percent. Alas, only 10 percent of those with eating disorders receive treatment.

Pro-ED sites are just one reason why parents need to monitor children’s online behavior. In the web journals or logs (blogs) of these sites, users share near-starvation diets, offer tips for coping with hunger and detail ways to avoid the suspicions of family members. They post “thinspiration” – images from the media of their ideal celebrities, such as supermodel Kate Moss and the Olsen twins. They discuss extreme calorie restriction and weight loss through laxatives, diet pills and purging (self-induced vomiting).

  • Between the ages of 8 and 14, females naturally gain at least 40 pounds.
  • More than half of teenage girls are – or think they should be – on diets.
  • Websites were changing the very culture surrounding eating disorders, making them more acceptable to girls on and off the Internet.
  • Pro-ED sites thrive off the denial aspect of the illnesses while promoting the perceived benefits of having an eating disorder.

References

  • Anorexia Nervosa and Related Eating Disorders, Inc.
  • Harvard Eating Disorders Center
  • The National Institute of Mental Health
  • Reuters
  • Socialist Voice of Women
  • South Carolina Department of Mental Health

I also recommend you visit a survivor of Eating Disorders, Lori Hanson’s website at www.lori-hanson.com and check out her book, It All Started with Pop-Tarts.

Parents Universal Resource Experts – Sue Scheff – Parents At Their Wit’s End

Are you at your wit’s end?

 

Are you experiencing any of the following situations or feeling at a complete loss or a failure as a parent?  You are not alone and by being a proactive parent you are taking the first step towards healing and bringing your family back together.

 

  • Is your teen escalating out of control?
  • Is your teen becoming more and more defiant and disrespectful?
  • Is your teen manipulative? Running your household?
  • Are you hostage in your own home by your teen’s negative behavior?
  • Is your teen angry, violent or rage outbursts?
  • Is your teen verbally abusive?
  • Is your teen rebellious, destructive and withdrawn?
  • Is your teen aggressive towards others or animals?
  • Is your teen using drugs and/or alcohol?
  • Does your teen belong to a gang?
  • Do they frequently runaway or leave home for extended periods of time?
  • Has their appearance changed – piercing, tattoo’s, inappropriate clothing?
  • Has your teen stopped participating in sports, clubs, church and family functions?  Have they become withdrawn from society?
  • Is your teen very intelligent yet not working up to their potential? Underachiever?  Capable of doing the work yet not interested in education.
  • Does he/she steal?
  • Is your teen sexually active?
  • Teen pregnancy? 
  • Is your teen a good kid but making bad choices?
  • Undesirable peers? Is your teen a follower or a leader?
  • Low self esteem and low self worth?
  • Lack of motivation?  Low energy?
  • Mood Swings?  Anxiety?
  • Teen depression that leads to negative behavior?
  • Eating Disorders?  Weight loss? Weight gain?
  • Self-Harm or Self Mutilation?
  • High School drop-out?
  • Suspended or Expelled from school?
  • Suicidal thoughts or attempts?
  • ADD/ADHD/LD/ODD?
  • Is your teen involved in legal problems? Have they been arrested?
  • Juvenile Delinquent?
  • Conduct Disorder?
  • Bipolar?
  • Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD)?

 

Does your teen refuse to take accountability and always blame others for their mistakes?

 

  • Do you feel hopeless, helpless and powerless over what options you have as a parent?  Are you at your wit’s end?

 

 

Does any of the above sound familiar?  Many parents are at their wit’s end by the time they contact us, but the most important thing many need to know is you are not alone.  There is help but the parent needs to be proactive and educate themselves in getting the right help.

 

 

 

Many try local therapy, which is always recommended, but in most cases, this is a very temporary band-aid to a more serious problem.  One or two hours a week with a therapist is usually not enough to make the major changes that need to be done.   

 

If you feel you are at your wit’s end and are considering outside resources, please contact us. http://www.helpyourteens.com/free_information.shtml   An informed parent is an educated parent and will better prepare to you to make the best decision for your child.  It is critical not to place your child out of his/her element.  In many cases placing a teen that is just starting to make bad choices into a hard core environment may cause more problems.  Be prepared – do your homework.

 

Many parents are in denial and keep hoping and praying the situation is going to change.  Unfortunately in many cases, the problems usually escalate without immediate attention.  Don’t be parents in denial; be proactive in getting your teen the appropriate help they may need.  Whether it is local therapy or outside the home assistance, be in command of the situation before it spirals out of control and you are at a place of desperation.  At wit’s end is not a pleasant place to be, but so many of us have been there.

 

Finding the best school or program for your child is one of the most important steps a parent does.  Remember, your child is not for sale – don’t get drawn into high pressure sales people, learn from my mistakes.  Read my story at www.aparentstruestory.com for the mistakes I made that nearly destroyed my daughter. 

 

In searching for schools and programs we look for the following:

·         Helping Teens – not Harming them

·         Building them up – not Breaking them down

·         Positive and Nurturing Environments – not Punitive

·         Family Involvement in Programs – not Isolation from the teen

·         Protect Children – not Punish them

 

 

 

 

 

 

Parents Universal Resource Experts – Sue Scheff – Parenting Teens Online

As usual, Connect with Kids offers valuable articles for parents.  This week they touch on the critical subject of our kids and the Internet.  I know first hand the pros and cons of Cyberspace, however the challenge is getting our children to understand how important it is to protect yourself online and know that the Internet has a vast amount of great information but like with many things in life, you need to be aware of the pitfalls that may come with it. 

Source Connect with Kids

“I wasn’t like other kids, you know, they had the Internet at home and I didn’t, so I felt like I was being deprived of something.”

– Ashley, 16 years old

Sixteen-year-old Ashley has always been a good student, but two years ago, she became a better student.

“In my history class, where we had to do a lot of research, I went from a B to an A,” she says.

What made the difference?  Ashley believes it was her increased use of the Internet.  She always had Web access at school but not at home.

“I wasn’t like other kids, you know, they had the Internet at home and I didn’t, so I felt like I was being deprived of something,” Ashley says. 

Researchers, funded by the MacArthur Foundation, observed over 800 teens and their parents.  The study found that, sure enough, parents think that spending hours online is unproductive for kids.  But, the study also found that online teenagers are learning- socially, technologically … and academically. 

“They are spending more time looking at text, so certainly they are going to be exposed to more reading opportunities,“ says Christine Colborne, an English teacher.

“You have to read through the websites,” Ashley says.  “You have to read through the links and everything like that.  So it does improve reading skills.  And I think it improves vocabulary.”

But some experts warn parents to be cautious.  Simply having online access is not a guarantee your child is learning.

“Many students are on the Internet simply in chat rooms.  They are on the Internet looking up graphical material.  They are looking up websites that are not text intensive where they are purchasing things or they are looking up pictures or downloading pictures,” Colborne says.

Ashley’s parents have set up filters on her computer that limit her access to inappropriate sites.  Still, she says having the Internet at her fingertips at school and at home has opened a world of opportunities.

“I’m able to meet new friends, new people … to explore new subjects that I never knew about,” she says.

Tips for Parents

Another study by Michigan State University found that contrary to popular belief, spending time surfing the Internet can actually be beneficial to children.  The study, which analyzed the Internet use of 120 parents and 140 children, found no negative effect on users’ social involvement or psychological well-being.  In fact, researchers say that Internet use actually increased the children’s grade-point averages and standardized test scores.  

As a parent, you are faced with the monumental task of monitoring the activities of your child in a world of virtually unlimited sources of information.  One of the most expansive, confusing and frightening sources of information available to children today is the Internet. 

You can take a number of steps to communicate the appropriate use of the Internet and other technologies to your child.  The Cyber Citizen Partnership offers these tips for setting Internet limits for your child:

  • Be aware of your child’s computer skills and interests.  Remember that it takes only a little knowledge to wreak a lot of havoc.  Often, kids will develop technical skills and look for ways to challenge themselves.
  • Focus your child’s interests.  If you recognize that your child is interested in exploring computer technology, you can reinforce positive behavior and encourage positive applications of this interest. Ideas include encouraging emailing with friends and family to become comfortable with appropriate and respectful online communication; recommending that your child adopt a position of responsibility in school as a computer monitor to assist classmates with computer use; fostering creative computer use by developing a personal or family website; or suggesting participation in school or community programs that teach in-depth technological skills or offer challenging technical opportunities.  
  • Explore the Internet together.  Ask your child to teach you about the Internet, visit educational sites, email questions and participate in online discussions together.
  • Take advantage of teachable moments. ­ When events or activities arise that provide the right time and place to do so, take advantage of these moments to help your child understand the issues involved in good cyber citizenship.  For example, take time to read news articles about hacking or cyber crime incidents to your child and discuss the impact it has had on those involved.  Use personal situations to frame the context of these discussions (e.g., ask your child how cyber crimes or irresponsible online behavior could affect friends and family).  Address cyber ethics messages as your child conducts research online or shares his experiences on computers at school.

References

  • Cyber Citizen Partnership
  • Michigan State University
  • University of California-Irvine