Part II: Teaching and Parenting in a Digital Age


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Exploring the challenges around technology use, practical proactive strategies, and where to find support and resources to better understand these issues.

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Part II: Teaching and Parenting in a Digital Age

  1. 1. II – Teaching and Parenting in a Digital Age Raising Faithful Young People in Media Cultures Diocese of Laredo June 16, 2012
  2. 2. The Internet. . .. . . has become a fact of life. Approach it like you do other potentially dangerous activities – like walking home from school, driving a car, riding a skateboard – and teach your kids how to use the technology responsibly.
  3. 3. Digital Natives
  4. 4. Rethinking Learning: The 21st Century Learner
  5. 5. Step 1: don’t panic!There are a lot of hysterical, over-the-topreports on your local evening news about thelatest crazy, dangerous, end-of-civilization-as-we-know-it threat to all that is good and decent,but the truth is not quite so dangerous. Yes, badthings can happen to kids who are not savvyonline, but there are simple things you can doto help prevent them.
  6. 6. Internet Risk Factors1. Technological: Those that threaten your computer.2. Emotional: Those that imperil psychological well-being.3. Physical: Those that pose the potential for bodily danger.
  7. 7. Technological Risks • Viruses • Hackers • Email Attachments • Storage Devices • Page Links • Email Forgery
  8. 8. Technological Risks • Unlikely Scenario’s • Hoaxes • That all seem plausible When unsure about an email, internet plea or rumor: • Hoaxbusters • Snopes • Truth or Fiction
  9. 9. SPAM Definition • The word "Spam" as applied to Email means "Unsolicited Bulk Email". Unsolicited means that the Recipient has not granted verifiable permission for the message to be sent. Bulk means that the message is sent as part of a larger collection of messages, all having substantively identical content. A message is Spam only if it is both Unsolicited and Bulk. • Unsolicited Email is normal email (examples: first contact enquiries, job enquiries, sales enquiries) • Bulk Email is normal email (examples: subscriber newsletters, customer communications, discussion lists)
  10. 10. Emotional RisksPre-Internet World Internet World• Petty note passing • Instant messaging or text• Rumors messaging harassment• Overall back-biting behavior • Stealing Passwords • Abusive “hate” websites or Facebook groups • Sending pictures through email and mobile phones • Sending porn and other spam email
  11. 11. Catholic Social Teaching (CST)Seven themes of CST L & G of Human Person• Life and Dignity of the Human • human life is sacred Person • dignity of the human person is• Call to Family, Community, the foundation of a moral and Participation vision for society. • every person is precious• Rights and Responsibilities • people are more important• Option for the Poor and than things Vulnerable • the measure of every• The Dignity of Work and the institution is whether it Rights of Workers threatens or enhances the life• Solidarity and dignity of the human person.• Care for Gods Creation
  12. 12. Simple Question• Would you say what you are saying online directly to the person F2F?
  13. 13. Emotional Risks
  14. 14. What Can Happen• Instant messaging or • Look for constant text messaging barrages of negative or harassment threatening instant messages or texts. • Watch for “false names” – sometimes others create to spread rumors that your child will be blamed for.
  15. 15. What Can Happen• Stealing passwords • Remind your child to never release his/her password to others. • Keep it safe.
  16. 16. What Can Happen• Abusive “hate” websites • Bullies can easily create or Facebook groups “” or a Facebook group called “Jenny Robbins at East Middle School Is a Tramp.” • Use the site’s reporting function to have it suspended.
  17. 17. What Can Happen• Sending pictures • Often pictures of a kid through email and in a compromising mobile phones position – changing in a locker room, showering after a sports practice or using the bathroom. • Can be broadcast at school or world-wide.
  18. 18. What Can Happen• Sending porn and other • It’s easy for a bully to spam email use a friend’s email address to sign him/her up on any number of pornographic websites • Often flood’s the friend’s inbox with inappropriate material.
  19. 19. What Can YOU Do?• Listen and do not jump to conclusions!• When a child says that he/she is being bullied, or made to feel unsafe physically or emotionally, this should be taken just as seriously as the same situation in the physical world.
  20. 20. Once you know that “bullies” are ….Targeting Your Child – What Can YOU do?• Deny Access – but does not do much to solve the problem• Map the extent of the bullying: Understand the full picture• Step-by-step remediation: (1) If password was hijacked, change it! (2) Post to discredit anything that was said. (3) Review password strength. See password strength tips.
  21. 21. Once you know that “bullies” are ….Targeting Your Child – What Can YOU do?• Contact school authorities and/or parents: – If on school grounds – contact school administration – If “after school hours” – go straight to parents of the suspected perpetrator.
  22. 22. Remember….Ultimately – you may NOT be able to “fix” the problem!• Teach child how to handle the pressure without letting it affect his or her mental health.• You cannot prevent it! Giving the child the skills to handle a cyber-bullying attack can also give them the poise and street smarts that will help them be more effective in adult world.
  23. 23. Physical Risks
  24. 24. Physical RisksRisk from a sex offender:• Child spends large amounts of time online, especially at night.• Pornography found on child’s computer (supplied by an adult or other solicitor).• Child receives phone calls from adults you don’t know or is making calls (sometimes long-distance calls) to numbers you don’t recognize.
  25. 25. Physical RisksRisk from a sex offender:• Child receives mail, gifts or packages from someone you do not know.• Child turns monitor off or quickly changes the screen on the monitor when you come into the room.• Child becomes withdrawn from the family.• Child is using an online account that belongs to someone else.
  26. 26. Parental ControlsIf younger children (under 13):• MS Windows 7 – offers convenient and easy-to- configure parental controls. – Tools – Internet Options > Content > Content Advisor• Internet filtering software (nannyware)• Location Control• Make sure kids know they can come to you if they inadvertently see something they don’t understand or that frightens them.
  27. 27. Honesty really is the best policyHave frank, consequences-free discussion with kids about their online activities:• Ask – what sites they frequent the most?• What are they doing on these sites?• Why they like those sites?• Be their friend – FB etc. – but keep a low profile.
  28. 28. Also learn more about. . .Digital Citizenship - or Media - or to Teach Internet Safety to Younger Elementary Students – safety-younger-elementary-mary-beth-hertz or In Focus – The Catholic Guide to The InternetOSV Catholic Parent Know How – Internet & Families
  29. 29. Caroline Cerveny, SSJ-TOSF, D. Min.• E-mail:• ACyberPilgrim Blog:• Catechesis 2.0:• Facebook:• Twitter: @ccerveny• LinkedIn: