Change occurs significantly if we look at the past as we grow up now. Technology is one of the things that has had this significant impact. This technological development also affects the way parents educate their children today.

Technology has become an inseparable part of children’s lives today. Surveys conducted in various countries show that more and more children have access to the internet, and even have their own devices from an early age.

The existence of devices such as laptops, tablets, smartphones, the internet, and social media has changed many things. It changes how a person studies, works, does activities, plays, and interacts with other people daily. Therefore, we need to understand the role of parents in the digital era to keep educating children according to their children’s development.

There are five things you can do as a parent to educate children in this era with all the challenges and opportunities.

  1. Keeping Up with Digital Development

Many parents are not familiar with developments which results in a lack of understanding of existing developments. Therefore, it is important for you as parents to learn about digital developments. It may take you more time to understand it than the children.

Try to understand what is popular digitally nowadays, including the applications, games, and websites that your child frequently visits. This will make it easier for you to know what kind of content your child sees and finally understand it. We are responsible for preparing children’s future, which is why we need to be digital-literate parents.

Currently, there are many sources of knowledge that we can explore about childcare, both in the form of books, seminars, and online information sources. In fact, sometimes maybe we even need to learn from children who are more updated about the latest digital technology. Make the best of the opportunities that exist and do not stop to keep updating your knowledge all the time.

  1. Building Open Communication

We need to create open communication between parents and children. This needs to be built from an early age for the child. When children are young, it is easier for parents to monitor their activities on the internet. However, what about when they are teenagers?

Children will certainly spend more time at school or doing activities with their peers compared to their parents. Therefore, open communication from an early age will make it easier for parents to discuss with children about the various challenges of the digital age. Trust will also be built so that children will not hesitate to tell their parents when they experience problems on the internet.

Parents also need to communicate what is good and what is not good to do while in the digital world, especially when they are browsing the internet or posting something on their social media. Communicate about it using simple language and do it in a two-way interaction your children will not feel it as a burden or rules that need to be implemented.

  1. Using Parental Guidance Rules on Children’s Internet Access

This is very suitable for children who have not reached adolescence. There are many devices, games, and web browsers that can include parental control features. You can activate this feature on your and your child’s devices such as cellphones, tablets, and computers/laptops.

This will make it easier for you as a parent to keep track of what your child is doing using their device to explore age-appropriate things.

  1. Directing Children’s Activities Positively in the Digital Age

One of our duties as parents is to direct children to have activities that bring positive impact while they are using digital things.

For example, using gadgets to get closer to family. When your children are far from home, cell phones can be used to maintain good communication with family members.

Another thing we can teach children is to join online communities according to their interests and talents to foster self-confidence and improve their skills towards something. The number of online education channels provides an opportunity for everyone to gain knowledge from anyone and from anywhere.

Children today have broad learning opportunities with the use of technology. It is our role as parents to direct them to use it properly.

  1. Be Their Role Model

Children have never been very good at listening to their elders, but they have never failed to imitate them – James Baldwin –

You can do all things above when you are setting the same example when using technology. The habit of using technology in this digital era needs to be built and grow in children wisely and with full awareness. The goal is so that our children can become personally responsible in using technology.

Currently, a phenomenon that often occurs is that parents often use social media excessively but give limits to their children to use social media. Children do not see this well, because their parents don’t set the right example. Who else is their guide at home besides their parents?

Children imitate parents, so you must set a good example when it comes to using digital devices. When you give restrictions to children using cell phones while sitting at the dining table, you must also do the same.

With or without us knowing it, digital technology has indeed become an important part of our daily lives. Therefore, as parents, we need to follow its development. It is necessary to do and finish our personal activities, work affairs, household management, and most importantly, for the education of our children.

Good luck with having digital parenting, parents!

May 9, 2021

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