CHANGING GAME: The world of technology changes so fast and parents can easily get left behind.
CHANGING GAME: The world of technology changes so fast and parents can easily get left behind.

Staying abreast of social media trends 'crucial' for parents

A WARWICK video game developer has told parents video games are one way that parents can connect with their children and foster positive media use.

Speaking to a group of attentive parents from the School of Total Education, Ben Wardele said parents really need to look at the games children are playing.

A panel of four speakers helped equip parents to guiding their kids through a challenging and unfamiliar world of social media.

SOTE principal Shane Power said it was crucial for parents to stay in touch.

"Technology is changing so rapidly and parents need all the help they can get to stay abreast of what the technology challenges are," Mr Power said.

"Children are digital natives but for parents it is a new thing they have had to learn about."

Mr Wardele spoke about the Electronic Standards Rating Bureau which regulates interactive media so parents can make informed decisions about what children are exposed to.

 

TECH SMART: Senior Constable Kirsty Moore was one of four speakers to address parents at the School of Total Education on Friday night.
TECH SMART: Senior Constable Kirsty Moore was one of four speakers to address parents at the School of Total Education on Friday night. Marian Faa

The bureau has a "conservative" rating system which classifies video games according to age in a similar way to ratings for movie and television programs.

His advice to parents was to get involved and talk to children about what they most enjoy about their games.

He said parents could use games as a way to connect with their children and take interest in what they are consuming.

Warwick Senior Constable Kirsty Moore also spoke about how children are using technology in this day and age, looking at current trends in kid's social media usage.

Tips for managing social media time were also shared with the group.

Setting a digital bedtime (90 minuted before bed) and establishing a "landing zone" where all devices go in times of non-use were helpful pieces of advice.

"I was really impressed with the quality of the speakers," Mr Power said.

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