Across the country various government agencies are setting in place youth awareness initiatives to educate teachers, parents and, most importantly, their children on the correct and safe use of cellphones. This is not some paranoid exercise in avoiding the effects of phone induced radiation but rather a practical program tackling bad phone “etiquette” that can lead to car accidents and bullying, both in and away from schools.
The reality is that many very young children will barely have put down their mini Lalaloopsy dolls before their parents are handing them a cellphone. Children want them and parents believe their children will be safer if they have an instant means of communication with their offspring. This is all fine up to a point, but with the sophistication of mobile devices, and a lack of education on the right and wrong ways of using a phone, many parents simply don’t realise that as they protect their children from one danger they are opening them up to many others.
It is worth remembering that widespread cellphone ownership is barely much more than a decade old and it is unsurprising, therefore, that little thought has been given to the education of children and cellphone usage. This is not something their parents ever needed to learn about as kids. One obviously hazardous situation, that is commonly highlighted, is the use of cellphones while driving. While your youngster may not be driving yet it is clearly worthwhile to alert them to these dangers should they find themselves in the position of being a passenger. in a vehicle driven by someone else using a cellphone.
Even more worrying, and somthing parents might not even have thought of, is “cyberbullying” which is now rife in some districts. No child need pass bitchy notes at school anymore. If you want to ruin another students life you can do so easily with a quick text, either to the victim directly or to other bullies. Finally it is hoped that parents now realise that cellphones can act as mini computers when it comes to linking to the internet and, therefore, the cellphone is no longer a device just for making calls but a portable connection to everything that can be found on the web.