Last week I took part in an information session and workshop at school, titled "Safe and healthy kids in a digital world". Obviously an ever evolving issue, plus something that many parents of today have concerns about, as we can't draw on our own experiences.
The session was held by the Secondary Counsellor at school, and was very informative. We got some tools to use with the kids at home, but it was also comforting to find out that school is very much on top of the children's safety on internet, how they interact via social media, their digital citizenship, cyber bullying etc.
At the end of the session us parents got to brainstorm together around how to help our kids being safe online, and how to limit their screen time etc. I for one, am constantly worried about our kids navigating the internet, and how to teach them how to be online smart. It made me feel really good when I realized during this session that Nathan and I actually already follow many of the advice given by the counsellor, and use many of the ideas brought forward in the brainstorming session!
We parents also got to play the same game that the counsellor had played earlier in the week with the Grade 6 (Lucas' grade) students. The objective was to recognize "tech logos" (YouTube, Twitter, SnapChat, Vine, Periscope etc) and also see how many of the famous YouTubers we recognized - compared to our children.
Most parents were pretty knowledgeable of most of the logos, but the YouTube stars... I was the only one who knew 'Pewdiepie', I was also only the only one who knew 'Miranda Sings' - not because I watch them, but because I'm onto what my kids watch! There was some I didn't know either, but it actually surprised me very much, just how little most parents knew about what their kids do while on the internet and on YouTube! (Do I have to add, that basically all the kids knew all the YouTubers...)
It's a scary world out there, especially online.