Computers, tablets, smartphones, and other digital gadgets can actually draw people apart from each other. If you were the mom, you’d often see your kids twiddling on their screens and most of the time they won’t even look at you while talking, as their eyes are often glued to their gadget. Internet can also be a tricky thing, as mothers probably see their kids using social media or apps that they have no idea about, not even to download – more so make it function.
The digital world can be a challenging space when it comes to fostering a closer relationship between moms and their kids. While others give up trying to connect to their children, the good news is that there are still a lot of ways for moms to nurture their bond with children through the use of technological gadgets.
Here are some things you moms can do with kids to make the most out of online technology:
1. Connect on social media
Teenagers can be one of the most aloof. Most of them value their social media connections immensely and that would mean their own private space away from the prying eyes of mom. Hindering their use of social media, whether it’s Facebook, Instagram, Twitter or Snapchat, will just create conflict. Allow them to express themselves online and add them on social media, but be careful not to appear overbearing or make sure not to embarrass them as you might get blocked. Try using social media to drop a message to them, but make it casual. The key is not to be “too much” of a parent inside cyberspace. A “like” here and there is also okay, but don’t “like” every little post or comment on every feed as they might get embarrassed in their social connections.
2. Take time to play and learn
Yes, it can be daunting to learn the new application games that kids are on nowadays, but mommy dearest, do try. Games are fun ways to connect with them and while you are both having fun, you might be able to give your children a lesson or two on the value of sportsmanship, cooperation, perseverance and patience, among other things.
3. Watch YouTube videos together
Members of Generation Z are the most obsessed with videos on YouTube. Even a two-year-old can already navigate through the range of videos that tickles his fancy. Almost all sorts of content are on YouTube, so it’s best to share usage of this with your kids while you are around to see what they want to watch. Is it a new toy review? Is it a new trailer of their favorite action hero movie? Is it a new funny YouTube sensation? Watch it together and share the fun and laughter, as this gives you a chance to understand and appreciate the things that catch their attention.
However, as a (working) mother, you may not always be around to teach your kids how to handle cyberspace, or tell them what to look out for and what to avoid. Saying these things to them only arouses curiosity.
Globe Telecom’s commitment in improving the quality of education and digital citizenship for a #WonderfulPH has paved the way for a partnership with Optus of Australia and Singtel of Singapore to launch the Digital Thumbprint Program (DTP), an educational workshop that teaches kids responsible use of technology. Moms who are interested in this program may nominate their child’s high school to be a recipient of the DTP workshops.
Globe Digital Thumbprint ambassadors will visit nominated schools to conduct the free workshops. The class needs to set aside at least 45 minutes of their time for the workshop to learn three topics: Digital Insight to help students discern proper online behavior; Digital Impact which tackles issues on technology's effect on students' social activities, and Digital Ambition to equip students with skills on how to use technology to achieve life goals.
To nominate a school for DTP, simply fill up the downloadable form from http://glbe.co/DTPNomination or email firstname.lastname@example.org. The Globe Citizenship team will use this information to contact the school directly to arrange a schedule with them for the DTP workshops starting this June. For additional questions on DTP, you may email email@example.com.