can be a rich resource for children, whether for researching reports
or just playing games. But there's a seamy side of the electronic
village, so it's best to give kids some guidance when they're
Children's World Learning Centers, which operates the University's
child-care facility, has passed along some helpful tips for
parents and children to keep in mind.
Set aside time to explore the Internet with your child. If your
child has some computer experience, let him take the lead. Visit
some children's sites.
Explain to your child that although he may be alone in a room
using the computer, once logged on to the Internet, he is no
longer alone. Other skilled computer users can find out who
you are and where you are; they can even tap into information
in your computer.
The best tool a child can have for screening material found
on the Web is her own judgment. Teach children about some of
the inappropriate material that can appear on the Internet and
how to respond to it when they see it.
Choose a commercial online service that offers parental control
features, which can block contact that is not clearly marked
as appropriate for children, such as chat rooms, bulletin boards,
news groups and discussion groups.
Purchase blocking software and design your own safety system.
Different packages can block sites by name, search for unacceptable
words and block access to sites containing those words, block
entire categories of materials, and prevent children from giving
out personal information.
Tell your children ...
To always let you know immediately if they find something scary
or threatening on the Internet.
Never to give out their name, address, telephone number, password,
school name, parents' names, or any other personal information.
Never to agree to meet face-to-face with someone they've met
Never to respond to messages that have bad words, seem scary,
or are just weird.
Never to enter an area that charges for services without asking
Never to send a picture of themselves to anyone without your
"Take our Advice" is a regular feature that taps the
University's expertise for practical tips in a wide variety
of areas. To suggest a future topic, e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org