In case you have been living under a rock, we are now deep in the digital era. Jill Shepherds says that the digital era is characterized by technological advancements that increase the speed and breadth of knowledge turnover within the economy and society. One word that stands out in this description is ‘speed.’ Everything in the digital world moves at a high speed. Everything happens on digital platforms. It’s here today and gone tomorrow. The speed at which things happen in the digital world poses a massive challenge to parents. Parents in this age have to change their mindsets and morph into digital parents.
Parenting is a relatively new concept. Back in the day, people just raised kids. Digital parenting is a super modern concept, and it is still a new vocabulary. Digital parents are adapting new parental efforts and practices to comprehend, support, and regulate their kids’ activities in digital environments. More and more scholars are looking into digital parenting to create new approaches which will help digital parents mediate their kids’ activities with digital technologies. Modern parents face new and unexplored challenges because they grew up in a different time, with different technological advancements.
Digital parents have to be on top of things. Kids are now connected to the internet by the smartphones they use, the games they play, and the apps they use. As much as parenting in the digital age is still a grey area and an evolving concept, we have gathered a few basic guidelines just for you. Here are five secrets we have for digital parents.
Embrace digital ways.
This is not a secret but a reminder. Most parents have tried to stay away from digital technology when bringing up their children. However, the future is digital. The faster you embrace it, the quicker you will guide your children. The pandemic just showed the significance of digital technology. For twelve months, kids depended on e-learning platforms to stay educated. They interacted with their friends on video conferencing platforms and played video games for their playtime. Technological innovations are showing great promise in helping children grow up and get educated. Concepts like educational games are making learning fun, something that all kids love. Digital parents cannot exist if they cannot embrace digital ways.
Engage your kids.
Talking to your kids might sound simple. Though, it is the primary indicator of a good digital parent. Engaging your kids goes beyond the regular casual instructional talks you have. Digital parents must maintain an open line of communication with their children. They should start engaging the kids early and often. Talk to your kids openly about the digital technologies they use, for example, the sites they visit. Start dialogues that evolve and shift as the kids work their way through different developmental stages. Remember to stay calm, be open, be direct and keep talking.
Be a role model.
Easy access to the internet means that your kids can see what you are up to on your digital platforms. If you want to inspire your children, you have to be their role model. Monitor your digital habits and build good digital behavior. Your children will pay more attention to what you do than what you say.
It will be unfortunate if you constantly declare how you do not like technology and how digital tech does not interest you. The truth is that it is not your world. The digital world is where your children live. These are the waters that they swim in. understandably, you do not know how TikTok works or why Fortnite is popular among your kids. However, you owe it to your children to learn about the digital world and help them maneuver it. Make it your life’s mission to stay up-to-date with all the digital trends, video games, and apps. You can join the Digital Parents- Kenya Facebook group. Here you can get all the latest trends and news. Talk to your fellow digital friends, your kids’ teachers, and your kids. Ask for help and advice, even from your children; educate yourself because this must be the first time in human history where the kids know more than adults.