All Saints Community Church- not so much a building, more a way of life

Parents Anonymous!

Investors in children and young people.

 Thats what parents are!
Not just parents, but grandparents, aunts and uncles, teachers, youth group and uniform group leaders.It is  a privilege to be involved in the growing up and encouragement  of young people , but also  hard work, In the life of young people there are celebrations , but also a lot of scary stuff for parents.

Even when at home or school, even in the same room as us, many  are likely to be exploring the World through the Internet , through websites, Facebook and other so called social media on a desktop computer or increasingly , on a tablet, even on a smart mobile phone, popped in a pocket and can do almost everything a big desk top computer can do. 

THE INTERNET AND SOCIAL MEDIA-  positive opportunities or just plain scarey?

Lets look at tree climbing for a moment. Firstly its probably something we have all done when we are young, and still remember bumps, bruises and scrapes.
As parents now, we might easily be worried about possible harm to our children hurting themselves climbing trees, stating the obvious, by falling off a branch, and if we want to give them advice, we would like to think have our own experience to fall back on ( possibly literally!)......
And we still think ( or at least most of us) that climbing trees can be part of  positive learning,exploring, gaining strength coordination etc.
 We know there are potential  risks for them. What do we do?
We might closely supervise little ones climbing very closely . The older ones we train to avoid rotten branches and plan footholds and hand holds. We might caution them to assess or weigh up risks for themselves and don't just be dared by friends into doing things on impulse, if they are hanging out with a group of friends.
 Tree climbing hasn't changed for generations, and you may remember advice and support just like it, that your parents,grandparents and great grandparents tried or attempted to give you.
Tree climbing hasn't changed much, and in return for well meaning  advice given to you when tree climbing, you can probably hear yourself giving a response to the well meaning advice of your mum or dad....' don't fuss!, I know what I'm doing' 'I can get down myself'' You are embarrassing me in front of my mates'' leave me to it!' 'I can do it myself! ' You might even have been one of those teenagers who succeeded in your family  never ever  knowing when you were climbing trees, or indeed anything else. 
Trees have been around for generations, but Facebook only started out in 2003, and there are many new variations starting up each and every month.
 We might use the internet at work, and use it at home for films or news or even keeping in touch with a few friends , but when you try and take an interest in the teenager in the corner of the room curled up with a smart phone, the best response when you ask, is  'Huhhh' because.... they have busy lives, and just going out ..... and  frustrating  throwaway lines about the latest , facebook defriending , chaton, sexting, and... we are encroaching on their private world, and we don't how to tell whether they are having a good time. making good friends, or having a scarey time being bullied, or just distraught that their latest picture only got 3 'likes' and their class mate has loads of 'friends' and loads of 'likes'. Once upon a time,' the competition' was who could climb that tree in the park the highest and fastest.
We can suddenly and dramatically  feel very ancient, out of touch, worried about the unknown, out of our depth, shut out of their private lives and...worried about the latest newspaper headlines about' sexploitation and grooming being rife' in this mysterious world of social media. Trees I can see, but this Facebook, Instagram and other stuff, I can't see!
 then try this out for help:

CEOP child exploitation and online protection agency parent and carers guide to the internet
25 min video. Its worth giving 25 mins to watch this.
'The Parents' and Carers' Guide to the Internet', from CEOP, is a light hearted and realistic look at what it takes to be a better online parent. The show covers topics such as, talking to your child about the technologies they use and the things they might see, such as pornography.

With interviews from leading experts such as, Professor Tanya Byron, Dr Linda Papadopoulos and Reg Bailey, as well as key industry players from Facebook, Club Penguin and Moshi Monsters , this online guide aims to equip you with the tools to have those tricky conversations with your children and keep your family safe online.

So grab a cuppa, sit back and learn!
Technology can seem a mystery , our lack of knowledge feel dead embarrassing, and even threatening.
 Demystify,  for yourself, what our young people see as something as routine .
Watch it yourself, then watch it with your older children and start a conversation with them 

 Basic Useful Language to use with the teenagers

'Think........ before you share'
'if you think about  sharing a picture, are you happy for your  Gran to see it'
' don't share your personal information, its OK to ask my advice first'

CEOP's Thinkuknow website  for Parents and Carers! is below with more advice and videos.

if you are not sure this is a real issue
11% of 9-16 year olds have encountered sexual images on the internet in the past 12 months
13% of UK 9-16 year olds say they have been bothered or upset by something online in the past year.

How many children use the internet?
How much time do children spend on the internet?
How do children use social networking sites?
How many children access or create harmful or worrying content?
How do parents monitor or control their children's internet use?
How do teachers feel about advising pupils on online safety?
see NSPCC weblink below for more information 

Related content How many children use the internet?
93% of all 5-15 year olds used the internet in 2013. This breaks down by age as: four in five 5-7 year olds (82%), and nearly all 8-11 year olds (96%) and 12-15 year olds (99%).Source: Ofcom (2013) Children and parents: media use and attitudes report (PDF). London: Ofcom
NSPCC website with answers to the questions useful information advice and more details of internet use by young people

We hope this has been helpful introduction to living with the internet. Do let us know of any other websites that have been helpful .

Life beyond computer games and social media?
We do stress these are all external websites below,are beyond our control, and views expressed are not necessarily those of the leadership of All Saints Church Stoneycroft. We would of course be grateful if you would contact us, if you have any concerns.

The is a real need for families to know what activities and opportunities are available for our young people in our local area.

Here on the All Saints Church website we have put a short listing on an AS Neighbourhood Bulletin page, of just some of the many activities available for our young people in our neighbourhood. some meet in leisure Centres, local church centres, schools or the recently opened Joseph Lappin Centre , Mill Lane, L13.

We would love to see a really comprehensive listing available, so whether it is a Scout or a Guide group, a leisure centre, climbing wall centre, all weather football pitches, somewhere to learn drama, or drumming, martial arts, young people and their families can know about what could be available.

CARE FOR THE FAMILY                                        

books, videos and some down to earth advice about family life, finances, debt, the joys and challenges of family life 


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