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Teaching Effective Online Communication

Teaching Effective Online Communication is what I'm writing to remind you about! Teach your kids about effective online communication. It's called Netiquette. I know, it’s just one more thing to think about amidst the math, science and writing curriculum, laundry, meals, and dirty dishes, but srsly. Take a minute and listen up.

In this amazing, fast tech digital age of quick txts and micro-communication, it’s easy to overlook that our kids might need some good training in effective written online communication. ‘Cause most of them aren’t writing much anymore- they are texting and typing. And w/that comes its own set of shorthand misinformation. Jk. Challenges-kwim?

Here’s a brief list of things to go over with your young ones for great online communication.

  • Write in complete sentences and use proper English.
  • Check for grammar and spelling mistakes.
  • Don’t be overly familiar and make assumptions in your address or response.
  • Don’t assume that you understand internet slang unless it’s a well-established group with well-established understandings.
  • Be concise.
  • Cite your sources.
  • Sarcasm does not translate well online. Be upfront and clear.
  • Important information does not translate well via FB private messages or texts. Pick up the phone and call or send an email.
  • CAPS, just like getting yelled at, are often not appreciated.
  • Have integrity- who you are online should be who you are. You are a person, not an avatar.
  • Protect your online reputation. People will be checking your online presence and what’s online stays online. Potential employers, friends, and in-laws can get a good idea of who you are (and aren’t) by your online presence.
  • Negative images live on forever, guard what you are sending to whom and be careful about what you post online.
  • Relationship and personal drama should be kept private.
  • The Golden Rule still applies- treat others the way you want to be treated. This is not rocket science, it’s just common decency and courtesy.
  • First impressions are true for digital interactions as well. The more positive and helpful you appear, the better others take-away of you will be.

Teaching Effective Online Communication means teaching your kids to interact with integrity no matter where they are at online. And, given the fact that most 12 to 20-year-olds are spending around 7.5 hours online each DAY, get a filter for your devices, check where your kids are going and have open, honest discussions with them about netiquette, as well as internet safety, dangers and privacy. Lastly, for their sake, and yours, consider implementing a digital Screen-Free day once a week. No screens. Just good clean face2face interaction. Hth, Peeps. Gtg!

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