The internet- the good, the bad, and the ugly

We believe in letting our daughter have access to the Internet. We believe that computer skills hold the key to her success in the future. We believe that learning to navigate the web through utube, facebook, google, online games, and email will allow her to build knowledge, street smarts, and relationships. But we also know the Internet is wrought with danger and needs to be closely monitored. There are blocking and monitoring programs that can limit what kids have access to, but often also block things that they would benefit from. you can keep the computer in a public area also, but with smart phones and iPads kids can be on anything at almost any time. If you deny access to everything you’re missing out on a major reinforcer that can be limited and used as a reward.
How are we choosing to manage it right now? I ask her every time she’s on the computer what she’s accessing, I set limits on appropriate material, I educate her about the dangers, I lock everything in one room when necessary, and I ground her from electronics if rules are abused. It takes constant vigilance, and we’ll all make a few mistakes, but the Internet is here to stay and will give our kids the advantage they need over their neurotypical peers so I’m willing to embrace it.

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