Technology. We love it, we hate it. We can’t live without it and yet we desperately want to unplug and live off of the grid. We want our kids to put the screens down and go play but then we long for the quiet time that comes with the kids being on screens. Parents today are truly parenting in unprecedented times in many ways but definitely when it comes to kids and technology.
We see the good and the bad of the growing tech world because we have lived through times of technology growing rapidly. For me, an older millennial (that hurts to type), I didn’t have a ton of screens or technology growing up. We had one TV in our house and we didn’t have cable. We didn’t have video games except for my brother’s game boy and a yard sale Nintendo.
My parents didn’t have cell phones until I was in high school and they were clunky flip phones. Eventually, we got Direct TV right before I went to college. I am telling you all about my sad tech-free childhood for a reason. I am telling you all of this because the point is that we have no idea how to parent children who have access to all of this technology and we don’t really have anyone to ask for advice from.
Our parents didn’t have to contend with Fortnite or smartphones. We weren’t begging them to get us the newest console for gaming or the latest iPhone so we could be a Youtube sensation. Maybe our parents really did get to raise us in simpler times.
But we don’t have to be afraid of technology because we can be smart about it and we can teach our kids to be wise with technology as well. There are resources available to teach us and our kids how to be responsible with the tech at our fingertips.
Parent Cue is an all-around amazing resource for parents. They have a blog, podcast, activities, printables, and guidance through all of the phases. One of their resources is called “Technology Through the Phases.”
This is a guide to walk you through how to handle technology with each phase. We have this available at Grace, you just have to ask us for it. You can also go to their website theparentcue.org to find tons of information and resources, including a cell phone contract.
Neptune Navigate is a resource that was just shared with me recently. This is an online resource that has modules to learn different areas of digital citizenship. What I love the most about this resource is that it is centered on biblical truth. There are biblical principles and scriptures throughout the whole program. This is the lens Neptune Navigate is viewing digital citizenship through.
This resource is free for parents through this link. There are three different courses, one for adults, one for younger kids, and one for older kids. They are each tailored for the different age groups but focus on the same topics. I have personally gone through parts of each level and have found them to be engaging, easy to follow, and valuable.
Neptune Navigate is a great way to help you navigate technology through all of the phases.
Pray for Wisdom
Here is the thing about technology and parenting. Every parent is going to do it differently. And each parental unit might even think that their way is the best way for whatever reason. However, families are different, kids are different, and parents are different. So while it can be helpful to seek advice or counsel from other parents, the important thing to remember is that you don’t have to do what they do.
The best thing to do for your kids and family in regards to technology is to be very prayerful about it. God gives wisdom to those who ask for it and have faith. That includes every aspect of parenting, even technology use. God can show you the best way forward for your family.
Prayer is the most you can do in any situation, not the least. So as you attempt to navigate technology with your child, no matter their age, I would encourage you to pray for wisdom.
God is bigger than technology so even on days when you feel like you let them have too much, or you think that you are messing this whole thing up, trust God because there is grace for that too.
Are you looking for a community or someone to grab coffee with who is in a similar life season? We’d love to connect with you and get to know you better! Below you will find a few people that can’t wait to meet you, shoot us an email so we can make a plan!
Tyler OJ Campus
Teresa Ator: firstname.lastname@example.org
Bethanie Tayler: email@example.com
Tyler UB Campus
Max Heller: firstname.lastname@example.org
Molly Pontius: email@example.com
Debra Kirby: firstname.lastname@example.org