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INTERNET, SOCIAL MEDIA AND OUR CHILDREN

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Sir,


Thank you for allowing me space in your newspaper to share something that I feel parents need to know. Firstly, we are all aware that we live in a world that is very different from the one our forefathers lived in.

In this day and time, I can safely admit that the world and society is ruled by the internet. We cannot deny the fact that it is an amazing world of learning and unlimited knowledge so there is a lot of benefits from it. However, there is also the downside of living in the era of the internet.  It has come with a lot of things innovations social media.  Remember there is no age limit for the use of the internet which means that even children have access to it.


Because of the internet, our children have become open to new ways of learning, playing games and meeting new people, but at the same time they are exposed to a world of dangers. Those who are parents know very well how angry their children get when they are refused the chance to access the internet.
Some children even run away from school just to get home so that they can have access to the internet where they play their favourite online games. This is where the danger comes in.


A parent may offer his or her cellphone to their children as a means of assisting them in the schoolwork but these young ones decided to do something else including going to their own favourite websites. As a result, their schoolwork suffers because they have wasted so much time browsing the internet instead of doing their schoolwork.


There are also other dangers of the internet which as parents we need to be watchful of if we care about the future of our children. Instant messaging, chat rooms, emails and social networking sites can bring trouble - from cyber-bullying to gambling, to inappropriate material and even exposure to sexual predators.
What this means is that as parents we need to take the time not only to understand what they are doing in school, but what they are doing online in their digital lives.

  No matter the age of the child, just ensure that you monitor everything that they do whenever they have been given access to the internet.
Nowadays parents are forced to buy cellphones for their children and this is not wrong but proper monitoring is vital.
To all parents out there, it is important to talk with your children and take an active role in knowing what your children are doing when they are using their electronic devices.


Matsenjwa, Siteki

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