Many parents who come to my events are excited about my becoming a tech-positive parent…up to a point. But they are also sick of battling with their kids. Some of them harbor an idealized version of the past, which can lead to a negative impression of technology. Here are some … Read more
What happens when one of your kid’s friends is doing something inappropriate with social media or the Internet? Having that “uncomfortable conversation” may not be fun, but looking out for each others’ kids is good for all of us as parents.
A new study out of Stanford is showing that kids can’t identify “fake news.” This is of concern to parents and educators, so here are some things you can do to address the issue and help kids read more critically.
Like it or not, your kids’ world is a Digital World. But just because they can operate the devices doesn’t mean that they are prepared for success. Let’s remove some of the misconceptions about kids and technology, and make a commitment to mentorship around the issues of digital citizenship.
The Mentorship Manifesto is a declaration of our responsibility to teaching digital citizenship to our kids. As parents, teachers, school leaders, or administrators, mentorship is the single most important commitment we can make to our kids.
Mayim Bialik is a TV star (The Big Bang Theory) and neuroscientist who also writes a popular blog on raising kids today’s world. I was delighted and surprised when I found out that she read my new book, Screenwise – and wrote a review on Kveller.com!
Is the Pokémon Go craze a good thing for your kids or not? Here’s how to co-create solutions with your digital native, rather than just feeling pressured to jump on the next trend.
Kids love Minecraft. Sometimes parents don’t understand why. Here’s a little insight straight from some avid Minecrafters, with a short list of some great resources for parents who want to learn more about their kids’ obsession.
Kids deal with small conflicts every day – it’s part of growing up. But for today’s “always-on” digital natives, there are additional layers of complexity. Constant connectivity complicates their social sphere. Here’s how you can be a good mentor and teach conflict resolution to your own digital natives.
Romance, Love, and Crushes in the Digital Age Pew Center for Internet and American Life is one of my favorite sources of useful data on how kids and families are using technology. In October 2015, they released a study showing that, (surprise!) kids are still falling in love, getting crushes, … Read more
I just had a chance to have a conversation with Annie Fox, M.Ed, the host of Family Confidential: Secrets of Successful Parenting. I’ve been a fan of Annie’s parenting expertise and youth mentoring for many years, so I was honored to be invited to be a guest on her podcast. … Read more
Distraction is a real issue with kids and tech. Having a plan can help mitigate the shortcomings of tech and help your kids find balance. When I speak at schools in communities across the country, parents approach me with their concerns. In every community, technology as a distraction comes up … Read more
In the last few years, since founding Raising Digital Natives, I’ve been working with parents, teachers and students at schools around the country. I was asked to work with a large group of students a few years ago, and I called in a trusted colleague, Karen Jacobson, a school counselor … Read more
The digital world has changed almost everything we do, and parent-teacher communication is no exception. You probably have more access to your child’s teacher than you ever did—and certainly more than our parents did. More access and more communication can be a great thing, but it comes with some … Read more
Social media comes in a variety of forms, but the goal is the largely the same for kids. It serves as a “third space” for teens and tweens—an additional place outside of home and school. It’s a place where young people can “hang out,” even when they are not with … Read more
A common refrain that I hear from parents that today’s kids “have no regard for privacy!” Their evidence? A teenager’s “rant” on Facebook. An inappropriate divulgence via Twitter. A photo that would be better deleted than shared. I still remember walking home from 7th grade when a friend said she … Read more
I just returned from speaking at SXSWedu. I had an incredible time—what an experience. SXSWedu is unlike most education conferences because of the diversity of speakers and attendees. There were app developers, policy experts, publishers, school leaders, teachers, students, and activists all at the same conference in Austin, TX. Not … Read more
I just wrapped up working with a great group of 7th and 8th graders and wanted to share their ideas so that you can use them with kids (and adults) that you know! If you ask a group of kids if they ever felt left out when they see images … Read more
The new digital tools of the 21st century offer unprecedented opportunities to create. Our most innovative schools are transforming from sites where the “empty vessels” (our children) are filled with knowledge to spaces where kids co-create knowledge with the teacher serving as “Lead Learner.” Libraries are changing, too. They are becoming … Read more
Happy new year! My TEDx is up! 2014 was an incredible year at Raising Digital Natives! I’m delighted that I got to speak with many of you in the last year. Excited to share my recent TEDx talk with you. TEDx was created in the spirit of TED’s mission, … Read more
I had so much fun on Milwaukee’s The Morning Blend (NBC Milwaukee). The wonderful host, Molly Fay has three kids, and she, along with her viewers, wanted to know how much parents should monitor their kids posts, texts and shared images. As I’ve mentioned before, I am a big believer … Read more
Channel Two News called me recently to ask about how families can help their kids navigate the word of smart phones and constant connectivity. I had a great conversation with Erin Kennedy in my office, and the crew also filmed one of my parent talks at a school. Additionally, they … Read more
One of my favorite parts of Raising Digital Natives is presenting to parent groups, teachers and administrators. Frequently, parents and teachers share their experiences with me, so I learn as much as I teach. Being exposed to the concerns parents and teachers have about kids in the digital age is … Read more
As technologies evolve, so do the rules of etiquette. While you might be confident about teaching your kids etiquette in the real world, you may feel that it’s more of a challenge in the online world. It takes some time to learn the new rules, and they seem to change … Read more
As parents or teachers we can get too focused on PREVENTING digital mistakes that can ruin friendships and reputations. We need to offer mentorship to our kids on how to repair things (when possible). We can model this in our own social media lives. Kids need to see that relationships … Read more
Many parents ask me—should I spy on my kids or is that an invasion of privacy? Apps like “My Mobile Watch Dog” and “TeenSafe” give parents the power to read all their kids’ texts. But then what? I tell parents: Mentoring is more powerful than monitoring. I always start by … Read more
In my last post, I talked about “app development” workshops that I do with 4th–7th graders to illuminate the issues that technology introduces into our lives. We start by identifying a common problem, then trying to solve the problem with a designed solution. We talked about apps to help with … Read more
When Raising Digital Natives works in school communities, I do a lot of classroom work with students about navigating friendships and social interactions in the digital age. My favorites might be 4th and 5th graders—they are often aware of the problems, and have a genuine desire to come up with … Read more
Conflict is difficult, even for adults. But for today’s kids, it’s particularly complex. The interpersonal conflicts that you remember as a child are all still there, but the landscape has changed somewhat. Digital devices in the hands of our kids offer more connectivity (good!), but it comes with many more … Read more
Remember picture day at school? I hated picture day. There was a permanence to it that was terrifying. I knew my parents would have that wallet-sized photo of me forever, so I felt like I had one shot to get it right. Smile right, wear the right clothes, and make … Read more
Happy New Year (and Back to School) from Raising Digital Natives Back to school is a great time to make those tech-resolutions for a more balanced, more empathic, more thoughtful use of technology in the coming year. Now…that sounds great. But I’ve been locked in my home with my child for … Read more
Guest Post By Raising Digital Natives Intern, Gemmie F. (20 years old) Since downloading the Snapchat app last fall, it’s become one of my go-to ways to communicate with the people in my life. I love it. I don’t care if my roommate is in the next room, if I want her … Read more
Perplexed parent: “My child wants to use Omegle, Ask.Fm, Instagram, Keek, Yik Yak, Vine, Snapchat, WhisperText, Dead Space, Fruit Ninja, (insert latest, greatest app here). I’ve never heard of half of these, don’t know what they do, and am not even sure what my yes or no means! Guidance, please?” … Read more
I am so glad to see Super Awesome Sylvia, getting some major press. Everywhere I go, I recommend her show to parents and kids. I met Sylvia and her Dad at DML 2012 and was so moved by their collaboration. It is so great to see a child and parent … Read more
Every time I give a talk, people ask me what is “normal.” I also get lots of notes like the one below and they are challenging to answer as I believe this is not a one-size-fits-all situation. Here is how I responded to one thoughtful dad who came to a … Read more
They want them, you want them. They are exciting and the old ones get dated so fast. What is a parent to do? Please check out my post on PBS Kids about tech gadgets, and feel free to ask questions in the comments section. I’ll be responding for 14 days! … Read more
I got an interesting call the other day, asking for commentary on a brand new application that allows you to see tweets, instagram streams and any other geotagged, shared material. If you want to see what your neigbors are posting, or what people at your child’s school are posting, just … Read more
Last night I gave a talk about “building a media ecology in your home” to parents of 3-9 year olds. I had a number of wonderful conversations with parents afterwards–but one in particular really made me think. First of all, I am happy to say, this conversation happened with a … Read more
Please feel free to come by and see this or one of my other upcoming talks! Remember, this year only, I can speak in metropolitan NYC or in Chicagoland without needing travel funds. See you on the road! http://www.peccalendar.org/ Is There an App for That? Parenting Your Digital Child Deerfield Parent … Read more
Derek Baird posted an insightful article on his Barking Robot blog titled: Nancy Lublin: Social Media That Saves Lives In her TED talk, Nancy Lublin, CEO of Do Something describes in harrowing detail how kids responded to her advocacy texts with serious and heartbreaking calls for help. “I think it [texting]might … Read more
SHOULD PARENTS MONITOR THEIR KIDS ONLINE? A million dollar question…this article in the NYTimes profiles a couple of families who monitor their kids, sometimes using software like net nanny Big Brother: No It’s Parents If so, should they let their kids know they are doing it? Should they have their … Read more
So Nick Bilton of the NYTimes (and others…) have identified the new app, snapchat as being tempting for sexting. The marketing does seem to favor temptingly topless young women…Any thoughts on other possible uses for snapchat? The idea of a photograph that only exists in the moment has a haunting … Read more
I just went to a great talk by Mike Lanza about his book Playborhood: Turn Your Neighborhood Into A Place For Play. He is more strongly opposed to screentime than I am, but I thought many of his points about facilitating kids’ resilience, independence, leadership and fun by creating inviting playspace, … Read more
Allison Arling gave an engaging talk at Sandbox Summit at MIT. To summarize her talk: The Intelligence Group’s research makes some bold claims regarding Generation Z. These kids, born since 1995, are focused on “brand me.” They are parent influencers, making decisions about purchases with parents. Their integration of the … Read more
This blog post is about fascinating folks I encountered at the Digital Media and Learning Conference last weekend in SF. I went to a great panel on “Democratizing Learning Innovation” that included innovator and Tinkering School guru Gever Tulley as well as Sylvia and her “tech ninja” dad, and some other … Read more
I just attended a super inspiring talk at Erikson’s Technology in Early Childhood (TEC) Center. They hosted two designers from PeaPod Labs, a company that creates apps for young children, to give a short demonstration of their work, talk about their design process, and discuss ways we can collaborate to … Read more
While my main endeavor is to help parents integrate the research on media and kids, and raise thriving digital natives-I was just part of an excellent discussion at ORD Camp 2012 about analog play. I was reminded, by a bunch of super smart techie dudes (all dads) that forts are … Read more
While this article is cautionary in its tone, it raises deeper questions that all of us who use social media should consider, especially if our kids are participating too! Considering that there are 7.5 million kids on Facebook underage (under 13) these questions are vital.
The FCC will hold a back-to-school forum on the “the opportunities and challenges” of technology use by teens in a digital world, and says it plans future events targeted at other age groups. The Sept. 8 event will include FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski and representatives from MTV and Common Sense … Read more
Should you let your toddler use your iphone? Should your ten year old have a facebook account? How can media help your kids be informed without becoming overwhelmed? What is a caregiver’s role in all of this? On this site, I will be posting interesting articles and information by smart … Read more