Introducing Kids to the Internet

The idea of getting rid of Yusuf (alaihis salaam) was at the back of his brothers’ minds, but they did not know how to do it. Unwittingly, their father instructed them on the how to execute the scheme: He said: Lo! in truth it saddens me that you should take him with you, and I fear lest the wolf devour him while you are heedless of him. (Qur’aan 12:13)
Parents voice fears in front of children, and thus open up a dimension that they were unaware of. Don’t take your fear to extremes. How often do you hear, ‘Beware of porn sites,’ etc. At the age of 8 or 9, children have little concept of the existence of such sites. Take into consideration the age of children and their state of development.

Effective Ways to Teach Internet Use

  • Acquire books on the subject and teach your children (home education).
  • Make children sit with the parent to learn (education by imitating).
  • Most Internet books start with an introduction of the Net. Read and rephrase it to the child in a simpler way. Then move to the practical aspect and, together with the child, explore the world of the Net. This process should last for at least 2 months. After that, the child should learn to use appropriate programs while the parent is in the vicinity.

When your child becomes Internet literate:

  • X-Rated Sites: There are sites and programs which block most x-rated Web sites.
  • Use the ‘history’ facility on your PC: this lets parents know the sites visited by children.
  • Teach basic rules of protection: a. Not to give e-mail address or personal info, b. Not to buy products from the Net without your knowledge.
  • Children should not stay more than 2 hours at a time on the Net to avoid addiction.
  • Befriend your child, and together e-mail their friends, and agree they give you their password.
  • Keep PC in family area, not in child’s room.