Internet Safety for Your Children

First impressions aren't made with a firm handshake, they’re made with a Google search. Don’t miss this advice on Internet safety for your student!

Your first impression isn't made with a firm handshake--it's with a Google search.

So says Dan Schawbel, author of Me 2.0, in a recent article in Real Simple magazine. The article goes on to say, "A whopping 70% of U.S. business managers say they decided not to hire a job candidate based upon something found out about her online."

If the idea of a professional interview seems too distant for your middle or high school student to register, he or she should consider this:  A recent study released by Kaplan revealed that more than 80% of America’s top colleges use social media in their recruiting process. Seventy percent of colleges say that the Facebook profiles of candidates are medium to high priority in the admission process. This infographic shows exactly how social media is reshaping college admission today. An age-appropriate virtual persona has never been more important.

Even before kids are legally old enough for a Facebook account (that age is 13, by the way), students are using iPads and the Internet for school assignments. As their curiosity grows, they are sure to stumble upon inappropriate sites. How do you set electronic limits and safety rules for your children? How do you best monitor your child’s searching and networking activities?

For answers to these questions and more, you should mark your calendar, invite a friend and fellow parent to attend the free community presentation Internet Safety for Your Student at Canterbury School of Florida on October 1, 2012 in the Parish Hall on the Hough Campus at 1200 Snell Isle Blvd. NE, St. Petersburg 33704.

Session 1 ( 6:00 – 7:00 p.m.) is for parents of children under 12 years old.
Session 2 (7:00 – 8:00 p.m.) is for parents of teenagers.

To attend one or both of these sessions, RSVP to me at hlambie@canterbury-fl.org.

Also of interest: 12 Things Students Should Never Do on Social Media.

What kinds of limits do you set for your children when it comes to Internet and cell phone usage?

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

Rob Fowler September 26, 2012 at 12:45 AM
"What kinds of limits do you set for your children when it comes to Internet and cell phone usage?" Hmmm, when I was 13 in 1973, my parent's rules meant very little to me. Of course in '73 the worst we could do was pot, beer, sex, and skipping school. "Sex, Drugs, and rock-n-Roll" was our motto. But now, kids are around crack, meth, guns, gangs, and ridicoulous amounts of cash from the previous four items. PLUS they have texting and facebook. If we had 50 bucks in our pockets we thought we were rich! Yes, rules should be in place, but parents need to be tuned in to who their kids hang with, where they go, and what they do. Ask them and there is a reasonable chance they will lie. Kids will be kids, whether in 1973, 2012, or two hundred years ago. The key is first, understanding that they are kids who are around so many who are popular because they break the rules, second that with strong self-esteem they will be able to make their own decisions without peer pressure issues, and third that they, and you as parents, need to trust each other and demonstrate respect for each other. I loved my parents when I was 13, but wow were they naive! Today has more danger, so DO NOT be naive.
Heather Lambie September 26, 2012 at 04:09 PM
You make good points, Rob. It is so important that parents be educated as to the myriad state-of-the-art ways children can get into trouble (or cause harm to themselves or others) via technology these days. I hope EVERYONE who has a student will RSVP to hlambie@canterbury-fl.org to attend this free event on October 1 at Canterbury's Hough Campus to learn more about how to educate your kids about cyberbullying, using digital media to cheat on school work, thinking critically about media, appropriate online behavior, how online people or information may not be trustworthy, illegal downloading, what is appropriate (and not) to post online, which types of media he or she is allowed to consume, etc. PHEW! I'm out of breath. It's a lot to think about! We're lucky to have experts on hand here at Canterbury!
Shannon Mahaffey September 27, 2012 at 09:09 PM
Looking forward to the Internet Safety Seminar, It is hard to keep up with all of the online advances and the ways that they influence our children. Such a great topic to bring to parents attention!
Hochadels September 28, 2012 at 10:56 AM
Heather's points ring true, as do Rob's. As parents we want to stay connected to your kids, and stay informed. I think the opportunity for sessions like this is tremendous. Who doesn't want help with setting those consistent limits and having conversations in those "20 second sound bites" [rather than deep lectures] about values, using care in electronic media, and other social issues----to help keep our kids knowlegable and safe (and keep parents informed). As our kids/teens worlds' expand, so does their access - with their peers and otherwise. Its our job as parents to help give them their foundation so that when they are in their world and away from our influence, they can make better choices, and then the occasional failure to make a sound choice hopefully does not crash them too hard. I hope folks take advantage of the session Monday night-- a great way to connect in our community, and learn things that surely will help families, with hands on, practical media advice. Kudos to Canterbury for setting a path in our community to lead these timely discussions!


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