Posted by Marti Weston on May 6, 2013
Libraries continue to play a significant role in the development of young readers, even as digital resources increase and children engage in more digital activities.
Recent research by the Pew Internet and American Life Organization finds that families with incomes under $50,000 consider libraries to be an important resource in the lives of their children.
Whether they are considering digital or non-digital opportunities, these families are more likely to rate library services as important than parents in families with higher incomes.
Some interesting research findings, quoted from the report:
- 94% of parents say libraries are important for their children and 79% describe libraries as “very important.” That is especially true of parents of young children (those under 6), some 84% of whom describe libraries as very important.
- 84% of these parents who say libraries are important say a major reason they want their children to have access to libraries is that libraries help inculcate their children’s love of reading and books.
- 81% say a major reason libraries are important is that libraries provide their children with information and resources not available at home.
Too see other graphs and learn more about the research released on May 1, 2013, read the report, Parents, Children, Libraries, and Reading.
Posted in libraries, parents and technology, reading, research on the web | Tagged: digital kids, libraries, parents, Pew Internet, Pew Research Center | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Marti Weston on May 5, 2013
Snapchat: the free mobile app that promotes itself as a disappearing act. Parents and educators need to know just enough to understand its attraction to children and adolescents and the potential problems that may occur
Teens and, yes, some tweens are now playing with Snapchat because it’s designed to make pictures disappear at their destination — in ten seconds or less.
I’ve tried to use the app, and pictures really do disappear. Voilà! The content is gone. So does this mean a child (or an adult) can go ahead and send all sorts of pictures?
Well, not exactly. Read A Warning about SnapChat, Teenagers, and Online Photo Sharing, appearing on February 11, 2013 over at the Forbes website.
After downloading and installing the Snapchat app on a mobile phone, a user chooses a picture, text, or drawing and decides how long to allow the a picture to reside on the recipient’s screen — anywhere from 1 to 10 seconds. For Snapchat to work the sender must trust that the recipient will allow the picture to delete and that the recipient will be trustworthy and respect the wishes of the sender. Any user is supposed to be 13 or older.
So yes, the content does disappear, but even a picture residing for just few seconds gives an unreliable recipient enough time to take a quick screen shot, preserving the image. Read this April 10, 2013 New Yorker article, Delete This Picture When You’re Done, by Matt Buchanan, who points out that the Snapchat site is handling over 60 million images a day. Another informative article is SnapChat: Sexting Tool or Next Instagram, a CNN report by Doug Gross. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in acceptable use, apps, cell phones, digital devices, nothing is permanently erased, parents and technology | Tagged: apps, cell phones, deleting pictures, digital devices, digital life, SnapChat | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Marti Weston on April 25, 2013
I keep thinking that grown-up politicians and celebrities will stop humiliating themselves when they use digital media.
But then another event occurs, and I am reminded that a good number of adults, just like many kids, have not absorbed four primary fundamentals or axioms of digital life.
- Nothing is completely private.
- Nothing can ever be totally erased — even when an app or site that says that it will disappear.
- Nothing put online anonymously will necessarily stay that way.
- Nothing personal should be communicated online if it cannot become public.
Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in acceptable use, digital citizenship, parents and technology | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Marti Weston on April 15, 2013
Check out helpful links for parents are at the end of this column.
We are all still reeling from the explosions at the finish line of the Boston Marathon.
For parents of digital kids, who with their children take all-the-time media access for granted, the greatest challenge is to figure out how to moderate what their youngsters see and hear in the days immediately following an event. It’s especially difficult because adults often want to be updated continuously by media resources.
Here’s a Boston Globe article with suggestions about how parents can help children feel safer and more secure after frightening events. Written by pediatrician Claire McCarthy for her MD Mama column, the piece also offers links to additional resources on parenting after scary, media saturated events. Dr. McCarthy reminds parents that they can get their updates from smartphones and laptops rather than keeping a radio or television turned on.
This graphic links to the MGH article.
“…as parents, we don’t get the luxury of processing and dealing separately from our children.”
Massachusetts General Hospital, where many injured people were taken, has posted How to Talk to Kids Following the Boston Marathon Tragedy, including the excellent graphic on the left.
You might also find it helpful to read blog posts, one that I wrote after the 2011 tsunami in Japan, Media Literate Disaster Discussions Balance Concern With Hope, and another, Talking to Children About the News.
Resources for parents and educators are also available at the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) website.
Posted in American Academy of Pediatrics, and media, digital kids, parents and technology, when tragedies strike | Tagged: Boston Marathon, BostonGlobe, Claire McCarthy, frightening events, media, parenting digital kids | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Marti Weston on April 14, 2013
I received this description about an unfortunate experience of a family traveling by commercial airline from the Campaign for a Commercial Free Childhood (CCFC), a not-for-profit children’s policy group that addresses and seeks to stop kids’ exposure to for-profit and exploitative commercial and media images.
The parents in the story below were attempting to prevent their children from seeing violent images in the movie, Alex Cross, playing on the movie monitors — a perfectly sensible thing for parents of today’s digital kids to do. Common Sense Media offers this review of Alex Cross.
Click to get more information about CCFC.
Seems like pretty poor customer service training and extreme lack of judgement on the part of the airline crew, if this type of request represents a security breach. The family had to waste time going through the ordeal of interrogation by law enforcement authorities in Chicago — authorities who, in turn, wasted their time questioning parents who were merely trying to protect their children from exposure to violent images. This took valuable time away from the real work of these law enforcement professionals — protecting us from violent criminals, but maybe the airline crew forgot this.
Here’s the story from CCFC. Read the rest of this entry »
Posted in advertising, media literacy, violent images | Tagged: Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood, CCFC, digital parenting, kids and violent media | Leave a Comment »