This time our guest was Marko Puschner from the safe.si Internet awareness point, which is part of the Faculty of Social Sciences, about the safe use of internet with children.
How to introduce the internet and smart devices to your child?
It is important to assume that these devices are tools and sources of information. The biggest mistake parents make is to present smart devices primarily as a source of entertainment, when they can do much more than that - for example, they can be used as a useful way to communicate or as a tool for learning.
Pediatricians, with whom Marko Puschner works, believe that children under the age of 2 should have no contact with screens - not even the TV. After the age of 2, they should be introduced to them slowly.
There are a bunch of things to pay attention to!
''When a child starts surfing the internet on their own, it's like letting them to walk down the road alone.'' When is the right time to do it? The Internet opens a new window on a world that, as well as its benefits, also has a lot of inappropriate contents. The way we communicate is different on the Internet, and it is often with strangers who are much older than the children. Screen contact is very impersonal, and people tend to be more daring over the screen, not even realizing that insults can be very damaging to the person at the other end of the screen.
If we allow our children to access social networks, we need to make sure that they are aware of all the risks, understand them and know how to protect themselves from them. It is also very important, for example, that children understand privacy on social networks. Many people get into trouble because they do not protect their privacy. It is therefore up to us to judge when our children are mature enough to use social networks, but it is certainly not recommended before the age of 13.
Milestones in learning about the internet and smart devices
Up to 2 years: no contact with screens.
2-5 years: less than 1 hour per day. Supervised and with breaks.
6-9 years: up to 1 hour per day. Supervised.
10-12 years: In the earliest teenage years; from 1-1.5 hours per day; also with breaks.
13-18 years: Up to 2 hours per day - for fun/leisure time.
It is very important that parents and children talk about the internet and what is happening there. This is also a way to notice sooner if something is not right. Online violence is a hidden form of violence that can also take place in very closed circles, so that others only find out about it if the victim tells them.
Games like the Minimellows Wooden memory game are ideal for a fun break from the screens! With its travel theme, children train their brains to full throttle, reminiscence their experiences and learn interesting facts about the illustrations.