In today’s world, many of us can say that our kids are more technologically savvy than we are! The problem is: they aren’t necessarily as worldly aware as we are, and that can be a critical shortcoming in a world where everything is digital. And we have a hard enough time teaching right from wrong and keeping them safe in the real world!
There are probably many places to go to for answers to these dilemmas, but I have just read a book that puts just about everything in one place!
Author: Mike Ribble
Audience: Parents of 2nd-12th graders (ages 7-17), K-12 educators, school and district administrators, teacher educators
Cyberbullies, stalkers, identity theft, intellectual property theft, etc. This book covers it all very thoroughly, and with practical advice and applications!
One of the most compelling aspects of the book is the 21st Century Digital Compass illustration. Ribble depicts a six point compass with several moral viewpoints:
- I don’t know
- Depends on the situation
- As long as I don’t get caught
- It’s an individual choice, so what’s the big deal
Along with the diagram, Ribble gives several ethical questions and scenarios to go through for yourself and your children. As I looked at the diagram, I thought, “Wow! I could really extrapolate this into all kinds of life situations, as my girls grow into teens, and young women!” It’s also a good grounding force for me as an adult, to check my motivations and ethics.
Raising a Digital Child is an itellectually stimulating book that reads more like a textbook or a how-to guide for all things regarding digital citizenship. But what do I like most about it?
I love that the lessons do not stop at, “Do this. Don’t do that.” Mike really arms parents and children with a thought process to go through, as you decide what level of safety and ethics to uphold in a digital world.
He also includes a crash course in the lexicon of digital terminology your kids might be using. You’ll have a head start if you know, for example, that when they text the letters KPC, they are trying to hide something from you! (Keep Parents Clueless)
This book is an asset to any parent’s library, and I am looking forward to going through some of the activities with my girls as they get more digitally autonomous!