Tips for Parenting in a Digital World

    • Maintain open communication with your child about technology use, regularly asking your child about his or her computer activities.


    • Social Media site such as Instagram and Snapchat don't allow children under age 13 to join. If your child is under 13 and has created an account on a social media platform, they likely violating the terms of service for that tool.  


    • Know your child’s passwords. This enables you to gain access to their e-mail, social networking sites, etc. in case of an emergency.


    • Regularly check privacy settings on all commonly used sites and networks. Ignoring privacy settings on sites like Instagram and Facebook means your photos, contact information, interests, and possibly even cell phone number and GPS location could be shared with more than a billion people.


    • Ask to get a tour of the sites your child visits.


    • Anything we do or post online creates a digital record, often called your "Digital Footprint." Nothing online is totally private, even if you intend it to be. Once digitized, it can be saved, sent and reposted elsewhere.


    • Google family members to be aware of your cyber footprint online. Set up a Google Alert for each family member for free. Note:  Google Alerts cannot be set-up using the a student email.


    • A good rule of thumb: If you don’t want a parent, teacher, principal, future employer or college admissions office to know something, don’t post it online. Ask yourself, "Do you want you Gramma to see or read your post?"


    • Encourage your child to only be friends online with individuals they have met in person. "Friends" aren’t always who they say they are; many people pretend to be someone else online including undercover police and pedophiles. 


    • Be cautious when posting personal information online. This includes: full name, address, phone number, email, cell phone, checking in on social media sites, where you are meeting friends or where you hang out. Discuss how easy it is for someone to find you based on what you post online.


    • Cyberbullying (threatening or harassing another individual through technology), is a growing concern. It takes many forms, such as forwarding a private email, photo, or text message for others to see, starting a rumor, or sending a threatening or aggressive message, often anonymously. Talk with your child about not partaking in this behavior, and encourage her/him to report it to an adult. 


    • For more information about common social media platforms you can print and reference the series of bookmarkers below. 

    Bookmarks to popular social media website

    - click for a printable version of these resources -