Teach your children about Facebook

Kids, don’t share too much online

This Facebook page highlights the dangers of children being online and not prepared for it. In the real world adults generally teach children about how to conduct themselves to keep themselves safe. We need more conversations about how children can keep themselves safe online. We even need a decent global conversation about whether children should be on open social media at all at a young age. They can join Facebook at 13 but as the young girl says in the video , she just copied what her older sister did. We can also see that children understand the implications of the real world better than the cyber world. An understanding of cyber reality is not going to happen without education. The comments under the video are worth reading since they contain so much common sense. I don’t have school age children and have often wondered how I would manage this. At the time , computing was always done in the lounge. It was a social activity where we could share and learn. There wasn’t a mobile phone which had a capacity to connect to the internet and download images. It was just for texts and calls. It isn’t quite so easy these days so the best line of defence is open , honest conversations and education. When I was explaining the personal capabilities for ACARA to my Year 8 students Facebook came up because the personal capabilities include looking after yourself. We quickly looked at easy things to do to help and they were pleased to have some input. In many ways the world is letting children down because they have the choice of no social media or being thrown in the deep end and to the wolves, perhaps. They manage it in the way they think fit and that might not be based on sound judgement. We can give them that and we can also help them by creating safe online sites to practise social media skills without being at risk. Like anything else in growing up, it ought to be a well thought out, gradual process . We have isolated the issues, the problems, the pitfalls – why don’t we make some changes and create safe areas for younger people to learn? The debate about whether 13 is too young for Facebook needs to continue and we need to consider the options. It’s a teachable moment crying out for some decent resources. This video is about 4 years old. Have we moved on from where it is ?

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