Despite all our quibbles, complaints and frustrations, technology is a God-send most of the time. It’s hard to imagine what the world was like in those murky pre-smartphone days, or just how we occupied our time in tedious queues and waiting rooms! While we all love our tech and home broadband, when it comes to our families, we need to exercise a little more caution. To help you manage your kids’ use of technology at home in a practical and helpful way, here are a few essential tips:
Set times for internet use
Home broadband is really useful – from downloading movies to watching documentaries and tutorials to help with homework and school projects. Virgin Media fibre optic broadband is a great service, with reliable and high download speeds. To ensure your kids can enjoy the benefits without using it excessively, it’s helpful to set fixed times when they can use the internet. This will also help cut down on endless hours of online procrastination when they’re supposed to be doing their homework.
We’ve all been in those exasperating situations where you’ve reached the end of your tether from a day of screaming, crying and nagging children, and there’s nothing more tempting than the thought of an hour or two of peace and quiet while the little one is sat in front of a popular cartoon. There’s nothing wrong with children enjoying a little TV, but try to avoid using technology as a babysitter in difficult situations. As well as reaching for their favourite show every time, mix things up by giving them creative ways to occupy themselves too. A giant sheet of bubble wrap will keep little feet content for hours!
Keep things open
As your children get older and more aware of technology, it won’t be quite so simple for you to manage how they use it, and your relationship will depend on being able to talk to each other about it in an open and honest way. It’s best to start this early, by exploring websites and new devices together, and discussing the potential dangers and problems you can face online. It’s not just about the negatives though. Try sharing fun activities with technology too, to show a positive side to it.
Chores for tech!
This is a bit of a mean one, but is particularly effective on older kids who don’t want a fixed timetable on when they can and cannot use their mobile phone or laptop. A simple solution to controlling their technology access is to keep control of the home’s wireless password or home broadband password. Change it regularly – a new password every week will both keep your network secure and the kids on their toes! To get the new password, your children must complete an agreed number of chores, such as cleaning their room, or taking the rubbish out.
So there are our tips on managing your children’s use or tech. Hopefully that will help keep them happy and safe whilst enjoying the great benefits of technology. What are your top tips?
This is a promotional post with an image from Shirley Binn.