The information age is arriving at lightning speed. Children and young people are among the most active citizens of the new era, and are often first in their family to use the new media. Some parents and other guardians of young people are enthusiastic about the new technologies; others desperately hope these changes will just go away.
However, there is little doubt that computers are here to stay and that they're changing the way young people learn, play, and get ready for their work life.
And children are increasingly using new technologies in their schools, libraries, homes, and communities.
In addition, parents understand that computer skills are important. In fact, 89% of parents believe computer skills are important to educational success.5
But parents face uncharted territory, and the technologies are evolving so quickly it seems hard to get a handle on what this new territory really is. One parent commented:
In addition, not all parents can afford a computer in the home, and not all schools are yet integrating technology into learning-creating a gap between children who are prepared for information-era jobs and those who aren't.
How can a parent teach, when there's so much to learn? This new challenge may seem unlike any other you've faced before as a parent. But, in fact, many of the answers lie in common sense, some basic experience, regular vigilance, and sensible guidelines for children.
Make sure your child's school has the appropriate technology and uses it to enhance learning.
Make sure your child is involved in fun, useful, and safe activities online.
Make sure that the education and technology needs of all children are being met. Contact your library, school board, city council, and your county, state, and federal