GREAT TIPS FOR THAT FAMILY TECH TALK AND WHY YOU SHOULD HAVE THEM!

As a first grade teacher, I found it helpful to begin the year making a classroom rules poster with the children. Though I generally directed the conversation, the children offered up many suggestions and, therefore, felt they had buy-in.


HOW DO I KNOW THIS WORKS?

I knew, because I saw him in action. The cutest little guy was coming to me from kindergarten the next year, and he cussed up a storm when mad or frustrated. So, on that first day, as we came to the end of our list of usual suggestions (Be Kind, Listen to others when they talk, especially the teacher), I delicately added one more thought that normally would not be necessary: DO WE WANT A ROOM WHERE BAD WORDS ARE SPOKEN? Thus, added to the bottom of the list were the words: NO SWEAR WORDS! And, not once, did he use a bad word.

Now, this might not be as simple in a family where technology is concerned, but talking as a family about tech expectations will give you a foot up.



SUGGESTIONS:

  • Keep in mind, each family will be different based on parenting styles, values, educational needs, social needs, and children's ages.

  • Let kids discuss their individual needs, ask questions, and give opinions.

  • Let kids know your concerns and explain why. Share your own tech issues (we all have them).

  • Help kids feel comfortable enough to bring up anything that they might see, even at a friends house, that is not age appropriate or just inappropriate. Discuss your family values together.

  • Also, discuss the benefits of technology when used correctly. Share new findings like health apps, virtual tours, or cooking tutorials that might be fun for a family night. Make it fun.

  • Make clear your non-negotiable rules, but let them know why. Such as too much screen time interferes with family time or getting physical exercise.

  • Finally, make it a monthly tradition or more often, if the situation calls for it. Remember, your family meeting may go off in unexpected directions. Each child may be facing situations, depending on their age, that you may not even know existed. Have a special time and learn together.



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