As students head back to class, many schools are trading books for tablets.
That means students face more screen time in and out of the classroom, making healthy tech habits more imperative for parents.
Often times the digital world can be just as scary as the real world.
As classes start up again, tech experts urge parents to talk with kids about navigating online devices.
Linsly Donnelly works for Securly, an online tool for adults aimed at creating a more kid-friendly internet.
She says, there are two things parents should keep in mind.
“One is just the baseline safety. So being able to filter a device make sure everything that comes on that device is age appropriate,” says Donnelly.
Parents can track activity by using software like Securly or other apps to see who children are interacting with online, along with what they’re clicking on.
“Say hey we’re looking at these things, did you know that you were actually on a device for two and a half hours last night and it wasn’t YouTube for homework it was actually YouTube car crashes, car races, ya know things that’s not homework,” says Donnelly.
In addition, she says as technology becomes more intertwined with our daily lives, having open conversations about social media and technology use is critical.
“It’s here, you can’t really go ostrich and hide your head in the sand. as early as 2 or 3 about what are the right manners when you’re online. Everything you do online stays there forever,” says Donnelly.
Tech experts urge parents to create an internet contract with kids so they understand the responsibility that comes with owning a phone or laptop.
Most importantly, lead by example such as putting away phones at mealtime and bedtimes.
For more resources on healthy tech habits, you can visit www.stopbullying.gov.