With all the talk about the technology available for parental control, the experts all agree that parental control starts with the parent. We examine what the parent can do to keep their kids out of trouble.
There is a lot of talk going around about all the different ways that you can keep your kid from wandering into chat rooms, viewing adult sites, watching R rated TV programs and just about everything else that you want to keep your kid from. But studies show that the best parental control to keep your kids out of trouble is you.
This may not be very popular with parents who feel they don’t have the time or shouldn’t have to watch over their kids 24/7, but in the old days, that’s how things were done. True, we didn’t have the Internet, we didn’t have cable TV with all its nudity and violence and we didn’t have pornography just a click away, but kids were still kids and there were plenty of ways for them to get into trouble. And the principals that applied then apply now as well.
The experts in this area recommend the following simple things to keep your kids from getting into things that you just don’t want them to get into. Again, these are experts’ views and not necessarily the views of this writer. We’re only reporting what the professionals say.
For TV it’s still the same as it was years ago. For starters, kids don’t get their own TV in their rooms. They want to watch something, they come into the living room or recreation room or wherever the TV is located and watch there with the rest of the family. Then, whatever it is your kid is watching, you as the parent make sure you monitor the program. If you’re concerned with your kid turning on a pay station then simply don’t have them in the house. We need to set examples for our kids. We can’t do that if we’re spending our time watching sex and violence ourselves.
Also, make sure you have designated viewing times. Most adult oriented material is shown after prime time begins. You may want to cut off the time your child can watch TV at around 10 PM. Earlier if your child is very young.
As for the Internet, this becomes a bit more of a problem because sex and violence are there 24/7. In the case of the Internet though it’s really no different from the TV. No computer access in the child’s room. The child uses the same computer as everyone else in the house, preferably in an open area where a parent can easily see what the child is viewing. Make your child aware of what is out there and tell him so he understands that he’s to go nowhere near these sites. Explain to him that it is very easy to check if he has been to a racist or porn site and the punishment for doing so will be severe. Again, you need to set an example for your child. If you’re going to know whether or not he has been to these sites, which you can easily check with your computer’s history, then you as the parent have to make sure that you are also nowhere near them.
Many may find the experts’ advice on this matter harsh and unreasonable, but they all unanimously agree that the problem with kids doing what they’re not supposed to do starts at home.
It’s the way it always was and it’s the way it will always be.