Advancement of technologies and growing popularity and access of the Internet has led to the emergence of blogging. Blogging propagates the idea of providing room to express oneself the way he/she wishes over the Internet. Today blogging has received overwhelming acceptance from every age group. Irrespective to age factor, even kids can take part in this modern medium of communication, that is almost synonymous to fun and enjoyment. Hundreds of topics are there for kids to blog. Through the step wise process of blogging, kids gradually learn the art of handling new age communications – how to write blog and choose topics, aptly use the interfaces, proper knowledge about various blogging software, etc.
Improvement of Skills with Blogging
Blogging can prove to be largely beneficial for kids in multiple ways. Apart from writing skills like framing sentences and referring to particular things, blogging help kids to connect with other people and provide them a platform to explore their creativity. Blogging can also effectively integrate the concepts of computer and literature, a must in today’s education. Blogging invariably leads to more and more researches. Thus blogs for kids under 13 can enhance their passion and curiosity level.
All these positive aspects of blogging have earned the approval of the parents who allow their children to spend more time online. But with virtue, comes vice and kids blogs are no exception. Security and safety issues regarding kid’s blogs have been a genuine concern with more and more kids making improper usages of the Internet.
Risks and Measures to be Adopted
Most certainly blogging is a largely influential means with the potentials to ignite the creative faculty of the kids. But kids blog sites reveal that all kids do not remain kids while blogging. Internet provides the kids an easy access to chatting, online videos, audios and other media. Kids often prefer to abandon the straight paths for the forbidden zones, their innocence being the ultimate victim. Curiosity that often leads the kids into the worlds of cyber bullying, adult features, pornography, sharing confidential information, etc. and finally culminates into addiction.
Children Need Guidance
Children need to be guided on the proper usage of Internet and must be taught to regard the limits. But for that the primary requirement is effective communication between the kids and the parents and teachers. The risk of improper Internet usage by kids increase as guardians often do not comprehend their language. Generally, the social networking sites give the kids the first exposure to the online world. These sites can be a potential threat to the ignorance of the children, tempting them to probe into the unknown world. Parents can check some of the kid’s blog sites to identify these sites. Online activities of the children must be controlled by kid-specific guidelines.
Watch Out for Inappropriate Sites
Some websites may seem to be private but in reality can become public and reveal information to the kids. Kids who have once treaded into the forbidden world tend to visit these illegal and inappropriate sites again and again. They lack proper knowledge on the importance of anonymity. Parents’ indifference towards technologies and modern Internet linguistics adds further to the worries. Parents must understand that kids can take advantage of their lack of knowledge, and most likely for the wrong purposes. Internet is the easiest and largest source of information. If parents are not adequately tech-savvy and aware of the Internet languages, then they would never be able to monitor kid’s activities. The more difficult it is for the parents, the more convenient it is for the kids.
Basic Rules to Follow
A safe blogging experience for the kids can be ensured by parents and teachers with some simple rules and actions. Following are some basic rules on how to supervise blogging activities of the kids:
- The blog posts by kids must have the approval of the parents. Parents can advise and guide the kids on better selection of the topics for blogging. Parents should regularly go through every individual blog entry by their kids.
- Parents must access email accounts. It is significant that the comments can be moderated through email accounts. With this parents can edit any comment that they feel is inappropriate. Indecent comments must never be responded and should be deleted at the earliest.
- The kids need to be apprised about the importance of keeping personal details personal. Name, age, location and other private information are not meant to be disclosed in the blogs. Using nicknames are preferable for blogging. Kids must also be taught to avoid including personal pictures in the blogs. Pictures are often misused that might lead even to cyber crimes.
- Online payments should never be handled by children.
- Blogs can be made private. Barring public views these blogs allow access only to friends and family. It would be easy for parents to monitor the kids’ activities with just the links of the kids’ friends to verify. Any negative aspect must be immediately shared with the children so that they understand the after-effects.
- Parents need to be a step ahead of the kids. Kids must be allowed to explore the world, but not entirely on their own. Parents can frequently visit the existing popular kids’ blogs and preview the profiles of their friends to keep track of their activities.
- Kids must not be allowed to delete temporary Internet files and browsing data.