Cambridge Curriculum Prepares Children for Life!

Recent times have witnessed a massive transformation in the traditional modes of learning, playing, and paying. The present era is the era of the internet. Even our children have not remained untouched by this advancement. However, is the world of the internet really that much reliable to let our little ones unleash it all on their own?

Definitely not! And today, we, at Excelsior American School, one of the top international schools in Gurgaon, are here to make the valued parent fraternity discern the fact that the internet is a double-edged sword. On one hand, it can prove to be outstanding for our kids, be it for studying and researching, for playing games, for interacting with teachers or friends, and for many other purposes, while on the other, it is extremely risky!

These risks could come in the form of cyberbullying, inappropriate content, scams, fraudsters, obscenity, and online predators. As such, it becomes imperative that due care is taken when it comes to ensuring the safety and sanity of the apple of our eyes in the world of the internet.

Thus, here, we, at Excelsior American School, a well-known international school in Gurgaon, have brought for you a few pointers in this direction that will help you ensure that your kids are safe online. Read on.

  • Showcase what you expect

We all know children are born imitators. Hence, try to mirror the constructive online demeanor you would prefer your children to show. That’s because only when they see you being ethical and attentive whilst online, will they feel more driven to exhibit a similar behavior themselves.

  • Make use of the parental controls

Put a parental control or search restriction on your children’s online activity. It lets you control your kids’ access to violent, sexual, or adult material and assist in protecting them from internet predators as well. It can be achieved by using parent control options offered by web browsers and ISP’s. e.g., the Safe Search Filter feature of Google. Also, there are paid software, security tools, programs, and features available to keep track of the online activities of kids.

  • Placement matters

Try to keep computers or desktops in a central spot in the home where it’s manageable to keep an eye on what your child is watching online. In cases of smartphones and tablets, set Wi-Fi to forget password settings. Checking their browser histories and no-gadgets-in-bedrooms rule can also be tried. However, these techniques are not so fruitful as the children grow old. So here, the following methodology plays its part.

  • Communication

Talk to them! Keeping an open line of communication makes the kids feel more comfortable. Let your teens talk to you about websites and apps they use to read, watch, or interact online. Discuss the perils of interacting with strangers. Explain to them passwords are there to protect them against identity thefts.

  • Be conscious of their online friends

We all know that online predators often play the disguise card. However, children being young are just too naive to recognize them. Hence, make sure that you become friends and have contacts within your child’s social media haloes. Also, teach them to be cyber smart themselves. Make them aware that the internet is not a private forum anymore, and it is hence vital for them to choose their online friends with utmost care.

  • Location privacy setting

Most applications, search engines, and networks have geo-tagging properties that make your location public. e.g., all photos uploaded digitally contain meta-data like GPS coordinates, dates, etc. These features should be turned off for egregious reasons of privacy and security. It is important to be aware that though few social media platforms hide our personal data by default settings, not all do so. Hence, one must first do this homework and then decide how much info is to be shared.

  • Several e-precautions to be given proper consideration by parents:
  • All IT facilitated gadgets must have active firewalls, filtering, and monitoring software engines
  • Digital surveillance policy must be in place
  • Antivirus of a decent standard must be employed
  • Bookmark your children’s frequently visited and favorite websites for their easy access
  • Screening and barring policies to be regularly reviewed
  • Passwords must be often changed
  • Unsought content handy on the internet must be blocked
  • Only the licensed version of software must be used
  • Privacy setting must be of strongest and highest standards
  • Perennially update your internet browser
  • Such devices must be configured with parental control filters
  • Online activities of children must be supervised, and they should access only the pre-selected websites apt for their age-group
  • Uploading individual photographs and personal info such as addresses and phone numbers by children must be prevented
  • Children to be taught to never open emails, attachments, links, and illegal downloads from unknown sources
  • Strictly instruct them that friend requests from anonymous individuals must not be entertained
  • Last but not least, take your child seriously if they narrate an uncomfortable online interaction
  • Precautions for online transactions

If your children are old enough for using digital wallets or online portals for payments and transactions, we, at Excelsior American School, would suggest you to teach them about the below:

  • Before scanning any QR code in a public place, they must double-check their legitimacy, for, at times, they are pasted over with a malicious QR code by hackers.
  • Children must be taught to follow the practice of regularly checking account summary or financial statement dedicatedly.
  • Children must be told to use the same payment method like a single credit card for all online transactions and not use that card for anything else to ease the checking of irregularities, if any.
  • They must turn on the SMS-based authentication of all the online payments and digital apps.

Summarizing, we, at Excelsior American School, positioned among the leading international schools in Gurgaon, would like to highlight once again that the ‘online world’ is a double-edged sword. It is hence very much important that we teach our children to deal with it tactically, for it is directly proportional to their growth and development.

On one hand, it allows children to experience educational, entertainment, social, and many other windfalls, but simultaneously it is connected to constant dangers. Thus, make sure you teach your children about the do’s and don’ts of the online world and keep them equipped with the necessary know-how to cope with any untoward situation. After all, making them aware is the key to helping them make the most of the boons of the internet while keeping the unnecessary troubles at bay. Isn’t it!