How to protect your child from the harmful effects of the computer and the Web?
Whether we like it or not, but our children will use computers, because all the most fashionable and interesting has long moved from TV screens to the Internet. When parents gradually cease to be the most important people in the world, and the opinion of friends and classmates comes to the fore, the World Wide Web becomes necessary for schoolchildren. It is here that the newest music is found, the most fashionable movies are downloaded, and the software is updated. And most importantly, this is where communication takes place - in chats and forums, on the pages of social networks, they get to know each other, find friends and like-minded people, fall in love and share the most intimate - that which for some reason cannot be discussed with parents or friends.
On the one hand, the Internet is fraught with great opportunities for a teenager: having posted a successful video or a talented song of their own composition, the guys literally wake up famous. Sometimes this is wide popularity in narrow circles of like-minded people, and sometimes it is real international fame. But, on the other hand, the Internet is also a lot of dangers: from banal plagiarism and virtual hooligans who offend chat users, hiding behind pseudonyms, to very real criminals and pedophiles. Therefore, it is very important to explain to children the basic rules of safety on the Web, and then carefully monitor their observance.
1. Install the computer in a prominent location. If the monitor is visible, the risk of the student visiting prohibited sites is much lower.
2. Make an agreement. Agree on how much time the child can spend at the computer, what sites can be visited. You can write down all the points and hang on the wall, stipulating pen alties for violation.
3. Teach children not to give out personal information. If your child uses chat rooms and forums, explain that you should not give your real name and surname, address, and friends' names to virtual acquaintances.
4. Forbid face-to-face meetings. It is best to forbid your child to communicate on the Web with those whom he has not met in person - at school, in the yard, in the country. But, if virtual acquaintances do appear, you can’t meet with them without the permission of your parents.
5. Talk to your child. Ask about online friends and what they do as if you were talking about real people.
6. Stay informed. It's important to know which websites your kids are using. Preferably sites where there are moderators who keep order. Many chat rooms and forums have the ability to communicate in private mode. Insist that the child does not communicate in private with strangers.
7. Set a strict condition: to download anything from the Internet (be it music, a movie or a new game), the child must get your permission every time.
8. Encourage your child to share concerns. If someone insults or threatens a child online, be sure to tell the parents.
9. Don't forget good manners. Talk to your child about politeness online. You can not insult or make fun of people in forums and chats.
10. Play together. If your child uses online games, the surest way to keep them safe is to play together with their parents, especially at first.
11. Pay attention to details in photographs. Explain to your child that photographs can reveal information about a person. You can not post photos on the Internet with easily recognizable details - house numbers, street names, car numbers, the name of the school on clothes.
12. Pay your child's attention tothat information on the Internet is available to everyone. What he publishes on his blog or on his page on a social network can be read by classmates, teachers, parents of friends, so you need to be careful not to write anything that could compromise the author.
13. Install filters. There are many programs that allow you to block unwanted material, such as MSN Prmium's Parental Controls or Netpolice. Speak to your ISP representative to find the best option.
14. Monitor compliance with the rules. Even if your child is a fairly experienced Internet user, regularly monitor whether he follows the rules of your agreement.
How to determine that a child does not just like to play computer games or communicate on the Internet, but is addicted to it? Dads and moms should be alerted by the following symptoms:
1. Violation of communication with relatives and friends.The child stops going for walks in the yard, does not invite classmates home. He no longer wants to tell you about his affairs. On your proposals to go to the cinema, go skating, the son or daughter is refused. All free time is now consumed by the computer.
2. Loss of interest in all other activities. Previously, the child studied well. Now he doesn't do his homework. It is impossible to force, and bad grades do not touch him. More recently, the baby was the first assistant to dad or mom. Today you can’t persuade even a little help. If the child attended some section, then he quits.
3. The child begins to lie. Assures parents that he was doing his homework, walking, although in fact he spent the whole day at the computer. Covers bad grades in school to avoid reproach.
4. The diet is disturbed. The child's appetite worsens. At home without parental control, an avid computer scientist forgets to eat. And if he eats, then, sitting at the computer, and something extremely unhe althy (chips, crackers, chocolate bars).
5. Sleep disturbances appear. It is impossible to tear a child away from the computer and put him to bed without a scandal. He does not sleep well, sleeps restlessly, he has nightmares.
6. Mental exhaustion. The child has frequent headaches and gets tired quickly. Attention and memory deteriorate. He is nervous, easily excitable.
As a rule, parents begin to take action only when all these manifestations appear before them in all their glory. The most typical reaction is to forbid the child to play, to eliminate the home computer. How to avoid such problems? Tip one: be close with your children, be aware of what excites and worries them. And teach your child to solve the problems of the real world, and not run away from them in the virtual world.
- 78% of students over 12 use the Internet every day;
- 63% of students download music and movies;
- 50% read the news and look for information to study;
- 45% play online games;
- 5% looking for a job.
Why does internet addiction occur?
Sometimes a hobby for a computer turns into a real addiction: it turns out that a child is not interested in anything in real life, and everything important is concentrated on the Web.
The main cause of computer addiction Psychologists consider insufficient attention to the child from the parents. Mom and dad are at work all day, the child is left to himself and is forced to look for a way to have fun. In the evening, parents come tired, often their strength is only enough to check the diary and find out if the child has done his homework. And the computer, unlike adult family members, is not busy with important matters, it is always in a good mood and is ready to play with the child.
Another factor conducive to computer addiction,- communication difficulties: the child does not know how to make friends, does not know what to talk about with peers. He does not know how to behave correctly in conflict situations, he is unsure of himself, other children feel this, so he becomes an outcast - they call him names, they make fun of him.
Agree, it's much easier to communicate with a computer than with real people. He doesn't care what you are. He asks for nothing in return. Despite the fact that the computer itself is not the cause of the formation of addiction, it can provoke it due to its amazing properties. We have just named some of them. In addition, other factors may play an important role:
- The computer makes it possible to experience strong emotions (joy, anger, fear, admiration) without any effort.
- Computer games give the child a sense of omnipotence - you can build and destroy cities with a flick of your finger.
- Computer games give the child a sense of security - even if the entire army you led is destroyed, but everything is fine with you.
- Reversibility of events, unlike life - in a computer game you can replay everything if something doesn't work out for you.
- Modern computer graphics create such fantastically beautiful landscapes that the beauty of the real world seems dull and uninteresting.
- You can become whatever you want. A weak and indecisive boy in the game can choose the most dexterous and strong character. Internet communication provides even more opportunities for reincarnation. You are the smallest in the class, everyone teases you as "small" - write that you are the captain of the school basketball team. No one pays attention to you - tell me how tired you are because classmates are fighting for the privilege of carrying your briefcase home. You can become anyone, and no one can catch you in a lie.
- The ability to get out of a situation that does not suit you at any time: you can’t go through the next level in the game - you don’t have to fight, overcome difficulties, just turn off the computer. Did not like the interlocutor - disconnect from the Internet. In real life, it is far from always possible to simply turn around and leave, interrupting an unpleasant conversation.
There are many websites created for children. If the child is just starting to comprehend the computer, games and programs with simple tasks will be useful:
WWW.TEREMOC.RU AND HTTP://SASHKA.UCOZ.ORG/ - the kid will learn how to use a computer pretty well and click on the screen in the right place.
HTTP://WWW.RASKRASKA.COM/ - site dedicated to coloring. Cartoon characters, flowers, animals, puzzles, dot-to-dot and spot-the-difference tasks, and even a cash register of numbers that you can print and color.
HTTP://WWW.REBZI.RU/ - this site can open to the smallest all the delights of the Internet. This is a children's playground where everything is very simple, convenient and clear: just have time to read and click where you go.
HTTP://INTERNETENOK.NAROD.RU/ - a site for kids who have already mastered the possibilities of the Internet and now want to have a good and fun time. Play games, read funny anecdotes, break your head or solve a couple of riddles. The site has a lot of advantages, but the main thing is that it will not be attached to the child's personal life in any way, because it delivers only entertainment and no communication.
If your kids have long been ahead of you in terms of the number of mailboxes or open pages, then it's time to offer them advanced children's sites (unless, of course, they have already discovered them for themselves):
HTTP://CHILDREN.KULICHKI.NET/ - a very fun site made by children themselves (more precisely, as it is written on the site: "Children from 8 to 88 years old"). Children themselves upload notes, photos, video clips, flash games.
HTTP://PAE-ALINA.NAROD.RU/ - this site has a colossal forum where a child can always find someone to talk to.
WWW.TVIDI.RU - here you will find short cartoons that you will not see anywhere else, and interesting articles for school-age children, and the opportunity to create your own page.
HTTP://FANTASYFLASH.RU - a site for those who want to try their hand at creating their own website. In the "Lessons and Articles" section - tips on how to use the most common free services. Here you can also download a huge number of emoticons, calendars and cute pictures.
There are also sites for teenagers who have already learned the tricks of computer communication and are now looking for something new to communicate with friends:
WWW.KINDER.RU - the site has collected all the necessary information on various hobbies, interests, ages. For schoolchildren, there is a separate section with an explanation of puzzles and rules!
HTTP://KINDER-ONLINE.RU/ - a site for children from 10 to 16 years old who are interested in subcultures and strive to be independent. In kinder-online.ru, children communicate openly with each other, share their impressions and photos.
HTTP://WEBDETI.NET/ - an unlimited supply of articles, instructions, support materials. Even adults will benefit from reading some sections.
WWW.GRAMOTA.RU - if a student has difficulty doing homework in the Russian language, this information portal is a real find. Here you can check the spelling and meaning of words, clarify the rules, find proverbs, sayings and “memory cards” that will help you learn complex rules.
For parents who want to surf the Web with their children, there are also special sites:
HTTP://WWW.DETSKIY-MIR.NET/ - the child will find cartoons and games here, and mothers and fathers will learn the opinions of leading scientists, psychologists and pediatricians.
WWW.SOLNET.EE - the site provides a bunch of tutorials and textbooks for preschool and school age. So parents can safely open the site and learn to be the best teacher in the world for their child right from the monitor.
WWW.POCHEMU4KA.RU - half of the sections are usefulness and wisdom for schoolchildren, and the other half is the opportunity for parents to share their experience with other families and boast about the achievements of their child. Plus useful links and articles. WWW.KLEPA.RU/ - a resource where children will find a lot of interesting things, and the psychologist's help section will be useful to parents.
HTTP://FAMILY.BOOKNIK.RU/ - if your child loves to read, this is your site! "Buknik" has absorbed a huge number of texts, fascinating stories that a young encyclopedist will really like.