As we celebrate this year children’s day, the kids should know these 8 digital skills now and not later. Technology expands the digital world every day. There is a constant wealth of information and new tools at every turn for people of any age. As the digital era continues to grow in leaps and bounds, the age of people accessing this information continues to get younger and younger.
The accelerated pace of digital technology can expose kids to dangerous risks like cyberbullying, violent content, social media addiction, scams and more. It’s critical that parents teach their children right from the start the ways to stay digitally safe.
Building identity and profile – When creating a digital identity whether short-term or long-term it can have an impact. Kids need to know how to set up a personal profile that’s safe and does not contain information like geographic location, date of birth or real last names.
Using time management – To avoid future screen addiction issues instill a balance of time spent on devices and time spent elsewhere.
Mastering safety – The digital world is full of things that no child should be exposed to. Unfortunately, kids can use the internet or social media to bully or express violent or inappropriate content. Online predators can use it to lure unsuspecting kids. Kids should know what’s acceptable and what’s not. Create high expectations and open a line of communication for kids to alert someone when something doesn’t feel safe online.
Learning security – Personal information should always be kept private to prevent unwanted visitors, hacking or even identity theft.
Practicing appropriate behavior – Kids need to practice digital kindness the same way they would anywhere else. They need to be mindful of what they post, what they search and what they share.
Using available resources – The internet is full of ways to learn, train, research and study. Kids should learn to navigate educational sites and know how to properly research topics for school papers or projects.
Knowing legal rights – Kids should be able to recognize what are privacy rights, hate speech, freedom of speech, as well as other rights associated with being a digital user.
Understanding the purpose – While digital devices are useful and informational and simply fun, they should not dominate a child’s life. They should learn the powerful tool digital technology can be while realizing it doesn’t have to become a dependency.
Akin is the author of the book "THE INTERNET: a town square for the global village.
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