What Do Tech-Workers Know That We Don't? 1

Parents who work in tech are often much more restrictive than non-tech worker parents when it comes to their kids and tech-exposure. Why is this?

Because digital devices can often come with a lot of downsides.

It’s long been rumored that Steve Jobs didn’t allow his child to have an iPad. A recent story on Silicon Valley parents details this trend by describing a couple of parents who work for Apple and a small high-tech startup:

The Koduris’ life is that of the quintessential Silicon Valley family, except for one thing. The technology developed by Koduri and Shahi’s employers is all but banned at the family’s home.

There are no video game systems inside the Koduri household, and neither child has their own cell phone yet. Saurav and Roshni can play games on their parents’ phones, but only for 10 minutes per week.

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How to Teach Kids to Do the Right Thing 2

This article is based on Episode 3 of the 99 Parent Podcast.

One of the most challenging things parents encounter is how to communicate values and ethics to kids.

If you’re like many parents, it’s done in a very informal way.

However, doing things in an ad-hoc manner can be problematic. When we don’t clearly state what’s right and what’s wrong, we end up leaving that up to the rest of society to do.

And a lot of times the lessons our kids learn from society aren’t the ones we want our kids living by.

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Free Range Parenting on the "Stuff You Should Know" Podcast 3

The Stuff You Should Know Podcast has a great episode right up our alley. This topic of the episode? The Free Range Parenting movement.

Free Range Parenting centers around the philosophy that parents should give their kids freedom have time away from overseeing adults. This gives kids the opportunity to learn independence and how to participate in self-governing peer groups.

The movement arose in reaction to the popular culture trend of kids being hyper-protected and hyper-scheduled. This rigid environment has caused kids to grow up anxious and not very confident.

The Free Range Parenting movement makes recommendations such as allow your kids to walk to school by themselves, go to the store by themselves, or play in a park without a supervising adult.

Whether you are familiar with Free Range Parenting or not, this episode is worth a listen.
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Why Self-Reliance Can Be a Kid's Super Power 4

This article is based on Episode 2 of the 99 Parent Podcast.

Self-Reliance is the greatest gift any parent can give a child, for it is a habit of mind that follows him all his life and levels the mountains as he goes.

-Willard and Margeurite Beecher, Beyond Success and Failure

Children face a lot of struggles in today’s world. From keeping up with mountains of schoolwork, to dealing with the stress of internet-fueled peer pressure, to being hovered over by helicopter parents.

Ironically, even though kids are growing up in a time of information abundance, one of the most important things kids should learn about while they’re growing up is one that is seldom taught: self-reliance.

What exactly is self-reliance? In short, it’s the ability of an individual to handle the problems required of them in life. But it’s even more than that. What comes with self-reliance is deep confidence in one’s own abilities, the knowledge that one can rely on an unchanging part of him or herself, and that one’s success or emotional stability isn’t reliant on the whims of others.

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Kid with rabbit hoodie crying

The following is based on the information contained in Episode 1 of the 99 Parent Podcast.

There are just so many challenges raising kids today. Today’s kids are growing up in a radically different environment than the one we grew up in. Networked electronics are everywhere. School is so demanding. More demanding than when I grew up, that’s for sure.

So many after-school obligations. Both parents working. That’s just scratching the surface.

This new environment is really impacting our kids. And many times in not a great way. Lots of kids are really stressed out and unhappy.

The stats bear this out. Suicide rates among children are up 34% since 2010. And self-injury Emergency Room visits by girls are up 40% in the 5 years between 2010 and 2015.

What exactly’s going on here?

That’s a complex question that requires a lot of digging. The 10,000 foot view of it is that the impact of technology on society has fundamentally changed what it means to be a kid. Or even to be a human for that matter.
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Teens playing Pokemon Go

We live in an age where we’re more connected than ever before. This comes with a lot of obvious benefits but it also comes with some rather large negatives.

One of the major negatives is the absence of solitude. We’re rarely, if ever, alone with our thoughts. We never have to experience the “boring” times because there are always more than enough digital distractions to keep our minds constantly occupied.

This problem seems to impact children and teens the most. In his latest book Digital Minimalism, Professor Cal Newport claims rates of anxiety are skyrocketing in children in large part because this generation is even more connected than adults. In fact, many in the youngest generation have never experienced solitude for any length of time and have had electronic distractions nearly every day of their lives.

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