Saturday, November 06, 2010

Is GPS Tracking Your Kids?

Today's cell phones have many great options for your family's use, but one maybe causing your kids some trouble, GPS. If you have intentionally turned on the GPS for your child's phone, then be sure you have set it to the most strict settings so only you can reveal where they are located. Some teens have set their status to coordinate with their GPS cell phone location as in the app FourSquare to tell their friends where they are currently located. That might be fine for family use, but not for non-family use. Read this site, Common Sense Media to learn more about GPS tracking and cell phones.

Image from

Saturday, July 17, 2010

What Would You Do If...

TV-G icon.Image via Wikipedia

Common Sense Media has some wonderful resources for parents about movies, media and this month an article about online safety. I would recommend that you bookmark or subscribe to this site to get current information about mainstream media and how if can connect to your kids.
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Monday, May 10, 2010


Facebook, Inc.Image via Wikipedia

You can now leave an anonymous post on someone's FaceBook page by using a new third party tool called Formspring. Read here about how Formspring works. It is my understanding that a person must know your Formspring name in order to leave comments. However, if your settings are set to "allow anonymous comments" you should change it right away.

More information can be found here.
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Pennsylvania Legislature Links

Pennsylvania Capital Building 6Image by hmarsh70 via Flickr

Here is a link to the legislature's documents for their support of anti-bullying laws and declarations for the state of Pennsylvania.
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PA Aniti-Bullying Law

In a recent article review I noticed that the group bullying followed the progress of each state's ability to pass an anit-bullying law.

The Center for Safe Schools offers parents, teachers and others many resources for anti-bullying programs or suggestions for helping a teen who has been a victim.

Bullying and Cyber-Bullying Featured in Latest Issue of The Challenge Newsletter

The U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Safe and Drug-Free Schools dedicated its most recent edition of The Challenge Newsletter to bullying and cyber-bullying, including the following topic areas: The School Bully in Cyberspace; Dr. Susan Limber Discusses Bullying in The Digital Age; What Can Schools Do About Cyber Bullying?; Empowering Students to Speak Up About Cyber Bullying; and Lawmakers Help Educators Take Aim at Cyber Bullying. The newsletter is found online and is available for download at: (This text is from the website in it's entirety).

Over 500 Pennsylvania law enforcement officers have received certification as PKO instructors. To determine an officer’s availability to present this program in your school or community, visit or For more information about the Protecting Kids Online initiative contact Don Smith, Safe Schools Coordinator at 717-763-1661, ext. 103 or at:

Background Check Yourself

privacyImage by alancleaver_2000 via Flickr

A friend emailed me very concerned about this site: If you type in your name, you can find some simple demographic information. Upon further review I noticed that I could purchase additional information for a small fee, $2.95 being the lowest cost. So go ahead search for your information, or a family member, or even the Vice-President, Joe Biden!
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Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Facebook Privacy Settings

Image representing New York Times as depicted ...Image via CrunchBase

This recent article in the NYTimes explains Facebook's new privacy settings and recommends how you should proceed. It is worth the read if you don't want your information distributed to third party vendors.
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Friday, April 23, 2010

New Report About Teen Texting

PHS Japan 1997-2003 (Willcom, NTT DoCoMo, ASTEL)Image via Wikipedia

The Pew Internet & American Life Project released results of their research about the habits of teens texting. The statistics are staggering. Just ask any parent of a teen who has racked up a texting or cell phone bill of over $400 in the first month. That's because parents fail to pay the additional $5 for the unlimited texting service. It is worth the cash outlay to keep your blood pressure down when that first teen cell phone bill arrives.
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Thursday, April 22, 2010

How to use FaceBook

Image representing Facebook as depicted in Cru...Image via CrunchBase

I came across this tutorial about how to use FaceBook for those who would like to understand how this thing works. If you prefer the video type of learning, simply enter FaceBook Tutorial into your favorite browser and select from a variety of videos. Be careful, these are not always the highest quality of people and information. Here is a link for some FaceBook tutorials from YouTube.
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Friday, April 09, 2010

Take Down Those Facebook Pics

Image representing Facebook as depicted in Cru...Image via CrunchBase

Did you know there are ways you can disconnect from photos on Facebook that are "tagged" with your name? This article from Common Sense Media explains 5 ways to get rid of those Facebook photos that someone has put online.
This site also has some very good tips about movie ratings, the new iPad and other technology devices that are used today.
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Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Internet Safety Games

Internet-Safety-Web_01Image by paul.klintworth via Flickr

Teaching kids about safe browsing or keeping personal information is sometimes far fetched. If they don't know anyone who has had a problem, then they don't get it. Try using this site with your pre-teens to give them some simple simulations or games that use the correct terminology for being safe online.
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Anti-Bullying Site for LGBT

A portal icon for Portal:Transgender, based on...Image via Wikipedia

I came across this site of tips for anti-bullying activities and suggestions. In addition this site offers advice that schools can take to support students who are LGBT(lesbian, gay, bisexual or trans-gender). There are handouts and suggestions on many of the pages of this site for parents and students as well. There are also resources for suicide prevention as well.
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Friday, March 26, 2010

Verizon Family Finder

UNDATED - This handout image supplied by Veriz...Image by Getty Images via Daylife

If you have Verizon Wireless then you can get a service for $9.99 per month that will track a phone in your family circle. If you want to keep track of where a teen is visiting, then you would download and activate the app on their client phone. You can set it up to send you a text when the client phone goes out of the set zone. You can set it up to text the client phone to receive a text message. You set the message on the client phone: "Hey you have gone too far from our agreed location. Call me right now."
In addition, you can set arrival and departure texts for when they arrive at school or arrive at home each day. OR you can get to the client phone with turn by turn directions with the GPS app.
You can follow all of this on your Verizon Wireless phone or on the Internet web site.
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Sunday, February 14, 2010

MTV Shows - Sexting in America

Cell phones in schoolImage by rmom352 via Flickr

The show is airing on Valentine's Day evening at 9:00PM. It is not unusual for MTV to show programs like this as a public service. This is a problem that is not going to go away as new teens get hold of their first phone and want to be accepted by others. Perhaps if you missed the show,you can find it on the internet somewhere after it is shown. More information can be read at this site.
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Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Be Aware of this Site

Can you imagine that someone created this game, Papermint, and thought it was a good idea?! Rather than describe this despicable idea, I will give you the link to read about it for yourself. Make sure you tell your friends and your friends friends to check their computers for this one!

Story here. No picture appropriate to accompany this post.