Around 200 parents, educators and members of the public attended the Media Literacy Council’s Parenting in the Digital Age Conference on 21 August 2019 to discuss issues pertaining to online safety for children and the consumption of media.
The keynote speaker at the Parenting in the Digital Age Conference was Sonia Livingstone, Professor of Social Psychology in the Department of Media and Communications at the London School of Economics.
Challenges facing Parents in the Digital Age
During her keynote, Professor Livingstone shared from her research on how parents have conflicting hopes and fears about how technology in shaping their children’s lives. On the one hand, technology can be seen as a pathway to the future while, on the other, there may also be concerns over the dangers of too much “screen time” or online activity to a child’s development.
Parents are also forced to consider the role they should play in the digital age. For example, there is a dichotomy between being a cheerleader, encouraging children to embrace technology, and a policeman, regulating their use of technology.
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Professor Livingstone also highlighted that parents need to go beyond simply monitoring the number of hours a child spends on a device and consider what the child is “qualitatively” doing while on the screen.
Resources for Parenting in the Digital Age
For parents who may be grappling with such issues, the Media Literacy Council announced the release of a revamped Clique Click parent guide at the conference.
The Clique Click guide offers tips for parents on how to help their children make best use of digital opportunities and navigate online threats.
It includes archetypes for parents to use to understand their parenting style and includes case studies, tips and suggestions covering topics such as cyber bullying, fake news and parental controls.
Mr Lock Wai Han, Chairman of the Media Literary Council said, “Children are still at an impressionable stage when they receive their first digital devices. As gatekeepers for their children, parents must play an active role in helping their kids harness the numerous opportunities that arise from positive digital media use. There is no one-size-fits-all solution. The Clique Click parent guide can help parents find out which mediation approach works best for their children, and in doing so, families can contribute to a safer, smarter and kinder online environment.”
Clique Click and other resources are available online at betterinternet.sg