Protecting Kids Online with Circle

As a gateway for the internet Circle is tops

When it comes to protecting your kids, monitoring where your kids go online, blocking them from places you don’t want them to go as well as limiting their time online Circle is the way to go. I have been using it at our home for several months now, it is dead simple to use. Circle has the ability to set up user profiles for each member of your home and each device giving you total control over what you block from whom. What I have also found amazing is that kids who come over to play and log on to your wifi are automatically assigned the “house rules” profile with you even lifting a finger.

I love the bed time features that shuts off the internet to devices so kids can really sleep. It also keeps track of how long they have been online and turns them off when they have reached their limit this works for the whole device or just one app. You want your daughter to only be on Instagram for 30 min a day and your son to play clash of clans for only an hour, you just enter the time limit on each profile for each app. So simple.

A couple of important updates they have made is adding the android platform to circle as well as Circle Go for iOS. Circle Go allow you to you can extend Circle’s settings anywhere. All your favorite Circle features are now on 4G and any other network they join. The Circle device is a one time fee of 99.00 online or Best Buy. Circle Go functionality is 9.95 for up to ten devices.

Want to keep your kids safe and limit time online. There really is nothing better than Circle. Head over to their website and check it out for yourself.

 

Bill Cosby on being yourself

In Bill Cosby‘s book Cosbyology he talks about the power of being yourself

In this chapter, he tells a story about getting a gig in Chicago that he thought that he wasn’t good enough to be at. He took that onstage and ended up bombing. When they introduced him, they said, “Here’s a really funny up and comer from New York City, Bill Cosby.” Half the room applauded, he came up, bombed, came off stage, and the owner of the club came into the green room and said, “What the hell was that?” Cosby said, “I’m sorry. I’m not good enough to be here.” The owner stopped him and said, “Yeah, you’re right. You’re fired, but can you do me a favor? When you go back to the hotel, can you get Bill Cosby and get him to perform at the eleven O’clock show? I don’t know who you are, but I want Bill Cosby.” The late show comes up, he comes walking in, and this time they introduce him as, “Here’s Bill Cosby.” From the back of the room, Bill Cosby yelled at the guy, “What about up and comer? Last show you said up and comer.” Everyone started laughing. Cosby had a dialog with the guy who introduced him and the crowd started going crazy. He said that he did a quarter of his jokes and that the rest was improvised, but he killed. He came off and the owner came into the green room and said, “That was great. From now on you should perform as Bill Cosby. I don’t know who that was, but I don’t want to see him again.”

What Cosby is trying to say to future comedians and I think to all of us. Stop trying to appeal to an audience and do what you do and you will not only be successful but you will have fun doing it. The reason so many of us are frustrated is because we aren’t doing what God has created us to do. We spend most of our day appealing to so many different audiences. We try so hard to make everyone happy and it only produces frustration.

This happens all the time in church we try to appeal to everyone but the person who matters most. There is something to creating safe, friendly environments but the reality is when we focus on entertaining God’s presence most of that other stuff takes care of it’s self. For the church to be the church it needs to be attractive to Christ. So go back on that stage next Sunday and make your church appealing to Jesus.

 

Guerrilla Parenting: What Makes You Feel Better?

The Power Of Family.

At the end of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory it adds a few scenes that were not in the original movie. For me these last few scenes made the movie so much more powerful than the original movie with Gene Wilder. It really drove home that the four kids and their parents who didn’t make it out of the factory misunderstood one thing. The power of family.

Charlie didn’t have all the things that the other kids had but he had so much more. He had a family that loved him enough to believe in him and give him boundaries to keep him safe.

Family is God’s idea he created it to be a vehicle to show his power and love. When functioning well it is a shining beacon on a hill. But we must teach our kids self-control, right priorities, we must refrain from giving our kids everything they want while giving them proper boundaries and teaching them to respect their elders.

Family is important we must never forget the power of family. We are bombarded daily by so many things that call themselves important but really aren’t. The spouse and/or kids God has given you are your main assignment. You only get one shot. Make the most of it.

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FjYqUB2x3hM

7 tips to keep your kids safe on mobile devices.

My last post was about keeping kids safe online but dealt more with computer based safety. The web is moving more and more towards mobile devices every year. From ipods to nintendo dsi’s, when you hand your child an internet enabled device without proper boundaries you are foolish.

  • 52% of nine year olds and 95% of 15 year olds have a mobile phone
  • By 2020 most of us will connect to the internet via our mobile devices

Mobile internet Tips for parents

  • Create a Parent / Child Acceptable Use Contract
  • Phones remain in kitchen at night to charge
  • Review phone logs at random, look for gaps in time
  • Get a paper bill and review the numbers called and texts sent
  • Get a web filter for your child’s mobile device.
  • Have family rules for daily, monthly and yearly mobile free times.
  • Have a zero tolerance policy for texting and driving.
Here are a couple of mobile software sites you need to take a look at.

Websafety.com

What makes websafety unique?

Message Monitoring
You will be notified when there is a dangerous message including sexting, pedophilia, cyber-bullying, suicide, drug, or gun talk.
Virtual Fence
Setup unlimited virtual fences and be notified when your child enters or leaves these perimeters. Perfect for working parents with “latch-key kids.”
No Texting and Driving
Revolutionary, patent-pending technology stops texting while driving; passengers can ask parents for permission! Easy to turn off and back on remotely.

Speed Alert
If your child goes over the set speed limit you will be notified instantly.

No Texting Zones
Block text messaging while in certain pre-defined zones, such as at school, in church or at work.

Location History
View recent history of where your child has been.

Contact Lists
Setup safe numbers for family and close friends, alternatively add numbers to the banned list.

Porn Filter
Stop pornography from being viewed on the phone’s internet browser.

If my kids were old enough to be cell phone users this would be a no brainer.

Another site that offers parents monitoring software is Mobile Spy.

Screen SMS messages

Records every SMS message sent or received.

GPS tracking
Tracks GPS position at any interval you select

Call monitoring
Logs all inbound and outbound phone calls.

Photo and video monitoring
Records photos and videos taken by the phone.

One of the push backs many parents and EVERY kid will have is this what about privacy. My kids will not have any privacy there are just to many dangers out there with mobile technology. If my kids get upset over monitoring software on their phone I’ll remind them they are lucky they have a door to their room. Parents if your kid has a cell phone don’t trust them, protect them.

 Here is a couple of other links to mobile safety software.

10 proven ways to keep kids safe online.

One of the posts I like to do from time to time is a post on keeping kids safe online. The internet is an incredible tool but it can and has done incredible damage. One of the most dangerous and most helpful characteristics of parents is they always believe the best in their kids. It’s dangerous because we overlook obvious warning signs because “our kids would never do that”. Our hearts tell us our kids would never see stuff or be pulled into stuff on-line but statistics tell us different.

Here are a few statistics about online safety and kids from enough.org

 

  • K-1st grade students access the Internet using various devices for a variety of purposes, including playing online games and communicating with other people. Online gaming is increasingly popular among younger students. (Rochester Institute of Technology, 2008)
  • 48 percent of students K-1st grade level interact with people on Web sites, while 50 percent show that their parents watch them when they use a computer, leaving the other half of those youngsters more prone to being exposed to predation behaviors or other threats posed by online strangers or even persons they know or regard as friends. (Rochester Institute of Technology, 2008)
  • 48 percent of K-1st reported viewing online content that made them feel uncomfortable, of which 72 percent reported the experience to a grownup, meaning that one in four children did not. (Rochester Institute of Technology, 2008)
  • 32 percent of teens clear the browser history to hide what they do online from their parents. (Harris Interactive-McAfee 10/2008)
  • 16 percent have created private e-mail addresses or social networking profiles to hide what they do online from their parents. (Harris Interactive-McAfee 10/2008)
  • 63 percent of teens said they know how to hide what they do online from their parents. (Harris Interactive-McAfee 10/2008)
  • 43 percent have closed or minimized the browser at the sound of a parental step. (Harris Interactive-McAfee 10/2008)
  • 11 percent have unlocked/disabled/ parental/filtering controls. (Harris Interactive-McAfee 10/2008)
  • 52 percent of teens have given out personal information online to someone they don’t know offline including personal photos and/or physical descriptions of themselves (24 percent). Double the number of teen girls have shared photos or physical descriptions of themselves online as boys. (34 percent girls vs. 15 percent boys) (Harris Interactive-McAfee 10/2008)

You ask yourself what can I do about it? Here are 10 proven way you can keep your kids safe online.

The 10 Commandments of online safety for kids.

1. Thou shalt put the computer in a very public place
2. Remember thy password and keep it holy
3. Know thy children’s friends, buddies
4. Remember thy monitoring software and keep it active
5. Thou Shalt not allow thy children to post any graven images (photos) without thy permission
6. Thou shalt not allow any contact information to ever be given out
7. Thou shalt forbid any meeting in person with online buddies
8. Remember to check thy child’s history
9. Though shalt create a separate log in for each child (on a macon those other computers)
10. Thou shalt not close your eyes and hope for the best http://www.safetyweb.com/

Resources to help you keep your kids safe online

http://togetherville.com/

http://www.websafety.com/

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB123238632055894993.html

http://enough.org/inside.php?id=2UXKJWRY8