Autism Spectrum

Launchpad

leaving school and leading your own life

Social Media

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The online world is both a blessing and a curse. You hear as many stories of digital disaster as you do of technology being used well.

 

“Aspie kids are super vulnerable. Parents need to know their stuff, to keep their young person safe.

 

But it can be a fantastic way to communicate.”

Leonie Smith, the Cyber Safety Lady

 

 

For many parents like us, the use of social media is a real double-edged sword. Our kids can make good connections online, but it can keep them away from the real world where they might find socialising much harder.

We need to help them find some life balance.

We also need to try to help them keep themselves safe, both physically and mentally. 

 

“It’s good to use the technology but we need to be clear about privacy settings and what apps are being used and whether they are safe.

 

I wouldn’t allow any apps where random strangers can get in touch.”

Leonie Smith, the Cyber Safety Lady

 

 

Luckily, there are several places where you can inform yourself about all the pros and cons of the digital world.

 

“Technology and typing can work so well with young people who struggle with body language. But we really need to teach good online etiquette.

 

They need to learn to STOP AND BLOCK the abuser who is not behaving rationally.

 

Our kids often try to reason with people , but when people get abusive that won’t work and they need to block them.”

Leonie Smith, The Cyber Safety Lady

 

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Resources To Use

Cybersmart

Cybersmart is the Australian Government’s national cybersafety and cybersecurity education program. It has a section for teenagers aged 13 – 18 years, and also a section for parents. Cybersmart is a very comprehensive site, with information presented in videos as well as in question and answer format.

Topics range from a ‘How Do I deal with… Cyberbullying, identity theft, sexting..’ to protecting your money online and even how to help your parents understand the online world.

It’s well worth spending plenty of time familiarising yourself with the section most relevant to you.

Cybersmart website here

 

The Cyber Safety Lady

Sydney-based Leonie Smith’s comprehensive website is an invaluable resource for parents and young people who want to make sure their digital life is safe and sensible. Leonie has many videos showing things like how to set your privacy settings on Facebook. Her blog and Facebook page can keep you up with changes in the online world.

The Cyber Safety Lady website here

 

Common Sense Media

A US-based website that rates, educates and advocates for kids, families and schools. ‘Common Sense is dedicated to helping kids thrive in a world of media and technology.’

 Common Sense Media website here

 

 

autism expressed

Autism Expressed

This is an online digital literacy program specifically designed for students with autism. It starts out with very basic skills and builds to a sound knowledge of online and digital media and skills. There are hundreds of lessons, many presented on video, which learners progress through in their own time frame. Autism Expressed is a cloud-based service which charges a monthly subscription.

Autism Expressed website here

 

Growing Up On Spectrum

Growing Up On The Spectrum

by Lynn Kern Koegel and Claire LaZebnik

This excellent book has a chapter on ‘Managing Modern Technology.’

 
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