Posted in acceptable use, Bookmark It!, digital citizenship, digital parenting, family conversations, parents and technology

NetSmartz: Digital Suggestions for Summer Family Fun

This set of summer digital activities, 5 Things You Can Do Online With Your Child This Summer, arrived in my e-mail a week or so ago. The list includes simple, but open-ended activities, each one enjoyable by itself, but with the potential to lead parents and children in many additional and enjoyable digital directions during the summer vacation. The ideas come from NetSmartz.

NetSmartz is an interactive and educational program for parents and kids, connected with the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children® (NCMEC). NetSmartz uses its considerable resources and clout to educate, engage, and empower children and their families about digital care and safety.

Visit the NetSmartz parents’ site. — Visit the site for Kids. — Visit the site for teens.

NetSmartz also features a wide range of digital safety educational resources for educators and law enforcement professionals.

No blog, though, at least not one that I can find. Puzzling since they provide some excellent information on blogging. Why not an example of what good blogging looks like — maybe one for parents and one for adolescents?

Posted in Bookmark It!, digital citizenship, digital parenting, online safety, online security, parents and technology, resources to read

FTC Net Cetera and OnGuard Online Family Website – Bookmark It!

Visit OnGuard Online

Are you searching for reliable tutorials to help you learn more about managing digital-age parenting topics? Check out the short book Net Cetera: Chatting With Kids About Being Online. Simple, straightforward, and easy to read, this publication covers most of the relevant digital topics, and its comprehensive table of contents is a ready-to-use outline that can help to guide virtual world family conversations. Net Cetera, published by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), is also available as a PDF download. Moreover, the booklet can be ordered in quantity for a PTA, book club, church activity or other parent group.

The FTC website, OnGuard Online, which features Net Cetera, is also a repository of information that can help parents to address concerns with their digital children. Each subject is covered with three sections, starting with a review of the “Quick Facts.” A more detailed explanation follows with a section of links that connect to additional online resources.

Topics include:

  • Kids Privacy
  • Computer Disposal
  • Identity Theft
  • Scams
  • Social Networking
Visit OnGuard Online


This site, and especially the Net Cetera booklet, is useful for everyone in a family, including grandparents or other seniors.  The type can be adjusted so that it is larger, and many of the topics covered provide information that is critical for aging family members to understand, and perhaps grandchildren can help do some of the teachings.

Posted in Bookmark It!, digital parenting, homework, parents and technology

Presentations Without the Power Point Hassle — Bookmark It!

Just about every parent knows the experience. A child prepares a great PowerPoint presentation, takes it to school, and then it doesn’t work — for some reason. Maybe it was huge with way too many graphics and did not transfer correctly to a CD or flash drive. Or perhaps your kid made a presentation on a Mac, but glitches occur when the presentation is on a PC?

Click to visit Discovery Ed!

Solve this problem and explore several ways to refine the whole process — writing, developing, and presenting — on a quality website, and live life without the file transfer hassles. At any number of Web 2.0 presentation sites a user, signs in, creates, works steadily on a project, saves, and can access it again to continue working or presenting as long as a computer is connected to the web.

Discovery Education features a page with four of these presentation tools, including one that allows a user to upload a Powerpoint file to the web and then present it. Discovery provides thumbnail descriptions of  Prezi, SlideShare, Picsviewr, and 280Slides along with links to each of the websites. Continue reading “Presentations Without the Power Point Hassle — Bookmark It!”

Posted in Bookmark It!, digital parenting, parent child conversations, parents and technology, service-learning

Kids’ Service, Giving, and Philanthropy — Bookmark It!

Click to visit Learning to Give

Since the earthquake and tsunami in Japan two weeks ago, I’ve thought a lot about teaching children the importance of making contributions and volunteering all of the time, not just when a catastrophe occurs and relief efforts are all over the news.

Recently I discovered Learning to Give, a long-established website that helps children learn about volunteerism, giving, service learning, and civic engagement. The organization encourages parents, church leaders, and educators to make service learning and philanthropy a significant presence in the lives of children.

Learning to Give, which gets nearly half-a-million hits a month, features digital and downloadable resources for parents, teachers, and church leaders to use with children. Materials on the site include: Continue reading “Kids’ Service, Giving, and Philanthropy — Bookmark It!”

Posted in Bookmark It!, digital parenting, great sites for students, parents and technology

Google Art Project – Bookmark It!

Check out the Google Art Project and explore art museums from around the world — some that you may have already visited and others that you hope to tour sometime in the future. I know that some museums here I may never get to visit, so it’s great to poke around. A parent and child or a grandparent and child can have lots of virtual fun exploring, viewing, and learning about actual pieces of art in each museum. Read the February 2, 2011 Washington Post article, Google Art Project: ‘Street View’ Technology Added to Museums, to learn more about some of the museums participating in Google Art Project.

The Chapel Where the Waverly Consort Performed

Just over a month ago I spent an amazing afternoon at The Cloisters Museum and Garden, a real medieval castle, imported from Spain, that is now a part of the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City. We spent time walking around, especially taking time to look at the Unicorn Tapestries. Then we went into one of the chapels to listen and watch the Waverly Consort perform a Medieval Christmas story. I love The Cloisters Museum, though, I can count my visits on one hand, since I’ve never lived close enough go more often.

So I was delighted a few days ago (February 1, 2011) when Google Art Project appeared, essentially opening a virtual door to a group of museums from around the world, including The Cloisters. This nifty new web site uses some of the same technology that helps people surf around to street views with maps and Google Earth. I chose the Metropolitan Museum from the list of museums, went right over to a visitor’s guide link on the top right of the page, and arrived within moments at The Cloisters. A few more clicks and there I was in the same austere, but beautiful chapel where I listened to the concert last month. Very cool.

Continue reading “Google Art Project – Bookmark It!”