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Cyber safety: it’s about being a good role model

Kids these days have access to all kinds of information over the Internet — even things that aren’t appropriate for them.
“They can ‘Google’ any naughty word they heard on the bus and it will show them photos or activities,” Dave Eisenmann told a sparse crowd at a forum hosted at Glencoe-Silver Lake High School Thursday night.
Eisenmann, director of instructional technology and media services at Minnetonka Schools, spoke on cyber safety to a handful of parents and a couple of students. GSL High School Principal Paul Sparby said he hopes Eisenmann can also put on a student presentation in the future.
And while Eisenmann can offer all kinds of tips for installing filters on WiFi modems, phones, tablets and computers, he also said that parents simply need to talk to their kids about what’s appropriate and what is not.
“In my day, we had the ‘sex talk’ or the ‘drug talk,’” said Eisenmann. “Now, we have the ‘technology talk.’”
And many of his tips for initiating those conversations and establishing guidelines for technology use are simple.
For example, the “Grandma Test.”
Eisenmann said parents should encourage their kids to think before they post thoughts, photos and other things on social media.
“What would Grandma think if she saw that?” is a question parents can ask their children. If it’s not appropriate for grandma, it’s probably not appropriate for the general public,” Eisenmann said.

For more, see the Jan. 20 print edition of The Chronicle.