Playing Online: Tips for Parent to Keep Kids Safe
Kids spend a lot of time playing games online. This equates to kids having more chances to meet strangers and less time to do the house chores, school duties, and personal responsibility. This also means that there is a great chance that they expose themselves to inappropriate venue, unsafe people, and improper games.
Thus, you should do something about it. This doesn't mean that you ban online games from your kids; you just have to make some modifications on the way you let your kids play games online.
• Learn the basics. As parents, you have the responsibility to your kids and the things that influence them online. Make sure that you are familiar with the game ratings and the sites that offer online games that are appropriate for the age of your kids. It is better to read reviews from gaming sites to know appropriate games for your kids to play.
• Set rules. This must be done before your kids play for the first time. Discuss with them the specific time, day, and conditions they are allowed to play online; and the dangers of giving out personal information online including their name and the place they live. Make sure that they understand them pretty well.
• Use handle or nicknames. As was mentioned, your kids shouldn't tell their personal information to anyone online. Encourage them not use their real names online. Aside from the security, using a handle is cool.
• Watch and Suggest. Know what games your kids play and whom they play with. Make sure that the games are appropriate for their age. If they don't know where to find a gaming site for their age, find one for them.
• Monitor game messages and chats. Most interactive games online allow players to talk with each other. And there are instances where players use offensive words. Teach your kids to mute the voice message or block their messages from these players. You can also report these players to the administrator of the game through chat, email or feedbacks.
• Play with them. There is no better way to ensuring the safety of your kids online than by sitting and playing with them.
• Be open. Teach your kids to approach you if they encounter bullies online or if they feel uncomfortable with what they experienced during the game. Respond to them immediately.