Tips & Tidbits: Teens and Technology

Our series on Teen and Technology continues this week from information shared by Jessica Wong, Hazelden Community Outreach Director, at a community seminar held in September. 

  • Get your own account on any medium they are using. For example: Facebook, Snapchat, Instagram, Twitter. Following each other is non-negotiable. But do not over comment on your son or daughter’s posts. Watch from afar and intervene when necessary.
  • Establish technology free zones or times in your home. Mom and dad, this includes you too! Simple rules such as; between the hours of 4 pm and 6 pm take a technology time out or technology is not to be used by anyone in the household in the dining room. Start small and expand as needed. 
  • Help your children achieve balance! Encourage them to participate in activities such as reading, drawing, sports, or other activities that do not involve technology.
  • Children should have a phone that is one generation older than your phone. Being familiar with its functionality is essential and will help you easily stay on top of new apps.
  • Giving a child a phone or computer for a gift or allow them to purchase one with their own money is not recommended. Why? A gift and/or a personal purchase creates ownership and takes away perceived parental rights.  

“Children today are the first generation to grow up completely immersed and surrounded by technology. They know no world without cell phones, computers, and social media.” – Jessica Wong

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