Advice & resources

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    The Media Maze – guiding and empowering children through media

The Media Maze – guiding and empowering children through media

In this post Dr Alicia Blum-Ross interviews Dr Eric Rasmussen about his book, Media Maze: Unconventional Wisdom for Guiding Children Through Media, which argues in parent-friendly language that the secret to protecting kids online is to change parents’ focus from protecting them to empowering them. Eric is an Associate Professor in the College of Media & Communication at Texas Tech University and is […]

November 28th, 2018|Featured, Reflections|0 Comments|

Toddlers and touchscreens: A parent’s guide

The use of touchscreens in families is changing rapidly, as is the functional capacity of touchscreens and quality of their programmes. Mixing toddlers and touchscreens can be tricky, but there are many opportunities to be had. Whether they assist children’s play at home, on long car journeys, or help them learn to love reading, it is important to consider […]

‘Safe’ information in the digital world

Providing parents with information about the digital world and all of its challenges is important, but the amount of information available is overwhelming – a quick Google search using the phrase ‘internet safety’ returns 95,600,000 results. In this information-rich environment, we need to focus on which information is likely to ensure that children remain safe while also making sure […]

Introducing ideas of privacy while having fun

In this post, Bill Shribman describes his work in media literacy with the popular Ruff Ruffman: Humble Media Genius project and a parallel curriculum developed by Harvard University’s Berkman Klein Center for Internet and Society. He argues that although the parenting of children varies greatly, they still need to know the key issues raised by being online. Bill is a […]

Digital driver’s licence

What kind of online safety messaging resonates with young people? What tools and strategies are most effective for improving digital literacy? In this post, Jeremy Blackman describes the digital driver’s licence.  Created by the Alannah & Madeline Foundation, an Australian online education resource, this resource focuses on exploring the nuance of online engagement alongside ethical and moral maxims. Jeremy is Senior Advisor, […]

October 18th, 2017|Featured, Reflections|1 Comment|
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    How can parents become ‘screenwise’? An interview with Devorah Heitner

How can parents become ‘screenwise’? An interview with Devorah Heitner

In our research parents often complain that they don’t know where to turn to for advice about digital media, finding that the old ‘screen time’ rules don’t serve them well in a digital age. This is why we’ve contributed to resources to help guide parents and educators, and why we periodically feature the work of experts who are out […]

October 4th, 2017|Featured, Reflections|1 Comment|
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    Tablet totalitarianism – how an obsession with ‘screen time’ misses the point

Tablet totalitarianism – how an obsession with ‘screen time’ misses the point

With the start of the school year, backpacks will be filled with notes home to parents. Instead of the expected warnings about forgotten PE kits last year, though, one mother discovered a flyer from her child’s school exhorting parents to tell their kids to ‘PUT DOWN THAT TABLET!’ Concerned about the negative tone, and lack of balance, mum and […]

September 6th, 2017|Featured, Reflections|2 Comments|

Talking to children about pornography: Five insights

Jessica Zurcher had an experience that led her to conduct 33 qualitative interviews regarding parent–child pornography communication. This post draws on those interviews to offer five suggestions for talking with children about pornography, advocating for an approach with open communication and discussion. Jessica is an assistant professor in the School of Communications, Brigham Young University, USA. She researches new […]

Screen time for kids: Getting the balance right

Because it is #nationalplayday today, and children are out of school for summer holidays, we are discussing strategies for managing screen-time.  This post features an infographic created by Sonia Livingstone and Alicia Blum-Ross, together with the Connected Learning Alliance, which addresses more effective methods for parents than simply ‘watching the clock’.  Sonia is Professor of Social Psychology at LSE’s Department of Media […]

Understanding fatherhood in the digital age

In this blog, Gillian Ranson looks into the rise of the father blogger. Recognising their growing impact, she reflects on the role of father bloggers with advertising as they become a potential source of revenue, as well as their position as ‘parent experts’ who are professionalised as fathers. Gillian is Professor Emerita of Sociology at the University of Calgary, Canada. She is […]