As modern day parents, there are a few things we now know for sure. We are certain that technology is here to stay and that it’s always changing. For some of us, this reality is exciting. For others, this can be an overwhelming aspect of day-to-day family life. As technology’s presence in education, healthcare, organizations and homes becomes mainstream, it’s not just what we’re using that’s important, but how we’re using it. This shift gives us an opportunity to reflect on how we want to manage tech transitions for our families.
The eight prompts below bring perspective and purpose to our beliefs around tech. We can revisit this process as our families grow and change – as well as the technology.
- Revisit your values. Is this new tech in line with our family’s principles and mission away from the screens?
- Advance your parental digital literacy. What is this new (app/device/game) or method? How does it work?
- Assess the ways it will impact your particular family. Why does my child want it? How will s/he use it?
- Name your fears and concerns. How will this change negatively impact our lives? How can we build boundaries to protect what’s important to us?
- Identify the positives. How will these new ways of using tech help? How can we benefit?
- Prioritize communication. How can we talk about this as individuals and as a family system? How can we identify what’s working and what isn’t in our homes?
- Build your community. What can I do to connect with other people around these issues? Where can I get more information, ask my questions and share ideas about tech?
- Become a user. How can I integrate technology into my own life so that I better understand it? How can I shift my perspective as technology changes?