The National PTA launched a multimedia campaign Tuesday to empower parents to have healthy and positive conversations with their children about the use of digital devices and social media.
Heidi May, a spokeswoman for the National PTA, said the effort—#ShareAwesome—hopes to encourage families to discuss the joy and responsibilities involved in using technology, much like parents would advise their children about bicycle safety. (So imagine that the often heard warning: “Look both ways before riding your bike across the street,” would be joined by, “Be sure to change your online password every month, and don’t share it with friends.”)
At a time when more young children are using digital devices and parents’ worries are mounting about their teenagers’ “online reputations” (see infographic below), it’s clear these conversations will be occuring with greater frequency.
“With kids getting more tech savvy than ever, families are struggling to adapt and build positive habits both online and off,” Hilary Schneider, president of LifeLock, said in a news release. #ShareAwesome is supported by LifeLock, an identity theft-protection company.
The #ShareAwesome campaign’s website, shareawesomenow.org, includes digital safety information, a pledge to be a “positive digital citizen,” and technology quizzes for parents and students. There’s also a contest for students, age 13 to 17, to demonstrate how they are positively using technology and social media.
One piece of digital advice found on the website seems like required reading for technology users of any age: “Think about your future and the feelings of others before you post.”
A version of this news article first appeared in the K-12 Parents and the Public blog.