Searching for a user name never crossed our minds when we were children. A suitably anonymous quote on searchquotes.com is telling - “In 10 years, one of the hardest things kids will have to do will be finding a user name that hasn't already been taken.” Our children today live a very different life from ours when we were growing up.
It will not be an understatement to say the internet rules their world, and this is a blessing in disguise. Asking them to reduce their online time is not fair anymore, we have no choice but to turn the tables and use this very tool to further their learning.
Educators have been asking for a while to increase learning time to better students’ performance, but extra learning time always comes with a price tag. The internet provides an easy and effective way to provide unlimited learning and it is loaded with a basket of benefits.
Allowing flexible learning beats boredom blues. The best pool of talented teachers worldwide can assemble online and with such expertise at hand learning can’t be far behind. Past experience proves that students who failed in their class rooms did quite well in online courses.
Finally, there is a benefit in this for schools too; they can operate on much lower costs. Relying on technology to dispense learning is much less expensive. Some reports estimate that if elementary students spent an hour a day on electronic learning then schools can reduce 1/6th of their teaching staff.
Distance education via internet is a win-win situation for all concerned. But we all know there’s a downside to this. Allowing our children to go online gives great liberty, and learning what the school intended them to learn may not figure on the top of their priorities.
UK's National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children says that 70% more boys reported seeing age inappropriate content online compared to last year. According to Claire Lilley, the NSPCC's safer technology chief, "Young people tell us they are experiencing all sorts of new forms of abuse on a scale never before seen. It is now clear that we are facing an e-safety time bomb with this being one of the biggest child protection issues of our time."
These are ground realities. Schools have started e-safety lessons for children as young as five. Whether you are a school or a parent, at the very least you can use an internet filtering service like Mobicip to create a customized internet environment with monitoring capabilities.
Shaila is a blogger at Mobicip - the #1 parental control service for iPhone, iPod touch, iPad, iPad mini, Android-based tablets and smartphones, Kindle Fire, and Windows laptops. Shaila loves to write about mobile learning and the impact of technology and the internet on families.