My daughters love getting on the internet and playing games and watching X-Men and Justice League videos. I closely monitor them and sit nearby.
On Saturday we all went out into the snow. The children played while I shoveled out the cars. And when we came in the girls asked to get on the internet. I sat down to read a little and told the girls that if they were changing the web page they were on they had to tell me. They agreed.
I was only seven feet away. What could go wrong?
Well. The girls have been playing a lot of dress up lately. Don’t know why. These things come in waves. But they’ve been traipsing about like ballerinas and speaking in falsetto voices. Again, I don’t know why. It’s just one of those things I’ve learned to accept as a father of four girls.
At some point the girls asked, “Can we type in dress up games to figure out what to play upstairs?”
So I hear the eight year old typing and the seven year old is reading what she wrote over her shoulder. “Dress…Up…Games…in…the…Bedroom.”
Now I wish I could say it registered in my head right away but it didn’t. 3…2…1…”Waaaaaaiiiiiiiittttttttttttt!!!!!!!! Don’t press enter!!!!!!!!!”
The kids whipped around in their seats staring at me wide eyed. She hadn’t pressed enter. I suggested some games to them and they tra-la-la’d away singing in falsetto voices. I shut the computer down.
Whew. Lesson learned.
February 9, 2010 at 3:40 am
Maybe my filters are too strict, but I typed it in and the results were pretty innocuous.
February 9, 2010 at 3:46 am
Not taking chances.
February 9, 2010 at 4:10 am
Do not take chances! I, personally, have been scandalized by pretty innocuous google searches.
Our kiddos are into Webkinz. Evidently our three year old has been flirting with another little Webkinz character at the public park. They are allowed to choose pre-set phrases to send messages to other kids on the site. He was choosing the "I heart you" phrase, to which his unwitting victim replied repeatedly, "Aw, you're sweet." We shut down their Webkinz access. We were not aware of the public park. Lesson learned!
Congratulations, Matthew, on being right there with your kids and monitoring their web access!
February 9, 2010 at 5:03 am
I'm loving your parenthood adventures.
February 9, 2010 at 5:05 am
I'm still looking for a way to filter the Google image result set.
February 9, 2010 at 12:33 pm
Speaking of webkinz..my son was looking for the next webkinz pet of the month on google..Waiiiiiittttt! Is exactly what I screamed!
February 9, 2010 at 12:33 pm
Don't ever try to search for "how to cook a rump roast in the crock pot." I had no idea . . .
February 9, 2010 at 1:01 pm
Anon 7:33 –
Baahhhhhaaaaaa! That is great:-).
February 9, 2010 at 2:15 pm
Go to the image search, next to the search bar is the advanced options. Bottom of the screen that pulls up is SafeSearch settings.
February 9, 2010 at 3:28 pm
Matthew, your monitoring charge sounds both courageous and demanding! If you haven't already, check out American Family Online — http://www.afo.net — they have been around since 1998 and are dedicated to filtering ALL content that is contrary to Christian family values. They have many options, including "Web filtering from your connection" for only 4.95 a month.
AFO is used by the Brotherhood of Hope, a community of Catholic male religious who work on college campuses (including Northeastern, my alma mater), so I know that its tried and true!
February 9, 2010 at 3:42 pm
Two Free Birds, Thanks I'll check it out.
And Anon with the rump roast joke: That was hilarious.
February 9, 2010 at 3:49 pm
Two Free Birds – the Brotherhood of Hope was also active at my college, Rutgers, in New Jersey. Many of the brothers are alumni. It was good to see the order mentioned, thanks!
February 9, 2010 at 6:03 pm
That just happened to me to this morning Matt! I was doing a school project for my toddler and preschooler, and was looking up words that begin with the letter "D". I typed in doll, and didn't want to use a Barbie (I'm still on strike against these plasticized bimbos from my childhood) so I typed in babydoll…BIG MISTAKE…I had to shoo the boys out of the room for the lingerie that popped up!!! Yikes!!!