It seems an understatement to say the market of technology at our fingertips is rapidly expanding beyond the confines our home or workplace (i.e. IPods, IPhones, laptops, wireless games~Nintendo DS, Wii). I am amazed as I see children of younger and younger ages with their very own laptops, IPods and cell phones...a far cry from my fav technological games/device as a youngster--PacMan and Frogger on Atari! It is definitely an entertaining and stimulating time to grow up.
This reminds me of the Bible verse which underscores to whom much is give, much is required (Luke 12:48). Each Thursday on Roof with a View, we discuss ways to be thrifty and good stewards of what the Lord has entrusted to us. We've also discussed ways to pass stewardship on to our children. When thinking of the word "stewardship," "money" or "finances" are the first words that come to mind. BUT we can also teach our children to be good stewards of the technology and entertainment available to them.
Some tools for you:
The Parent's Guide from the Family Online Safety Institute is helpful. You can print a copy for your home by clicking here.
As encouragement for your children, print this kid friendly, colorful document to put it in a prominent place near your computer or in their room. Click here to print.
This parent/child online safety contract which will provide a great discussion tool for you with your children as well as provide some accountability. Click here to print.
If you are interested in more safety resources, click here. Focus on the Family has some great links including Internet Safety Software Resources and Media Safety Resources (even for the IPhone and ITouch). One cool thing I did not know about is this DVD player that filters sex, violence and profanity on regular DVDs! How's that for a family friendly movie night?!?
Only be careful, and watch yourselves closely so that you do not forget the things your eyes have seen or let them slip from your heart as long as you live. Teach them to your children and to their children after them. Deuteronomy 4:8-10
Feel free to share any tools that you have found helpful in keeping your family and home safe from technology and media. I'll leave you with a music video of which typing this post reminded me (it alludes more to marriage than technology but it's still a great video).