10 Cool math app games that teachers and kids love

Math apps save the day. Seriously. While parents worry about too much screen time and other possible cyber problems their kids may run into on their phones and tablets the upside of these gadgets kids use are math apps.

There are tons of benefits to be had by tech savvy kids who can navigate through the muck to uncover the gems of the digital frontier.  Not sure where to start? Next time your youngster is in need of some screen-based stimulation, consider these educational and fun math apps for kids.

Teachers and parents alike are now using following math apps for kids to help their students acquire mathematical skills easily while having fun with numbers:

1. Prodigy Game – math app

kids math prodigy game
Fun with math – Prodigy Game is a go to favorite

Meant for students of grades 1-8, Prodigy Game is available for free on iOS, Android and web platforms. Teachers love this game-based learning program because it allows them to use games in classroom and for homework assessment projects and make learning a fun activity.

The app offers built-in diagnostic test which generates real-time reports on students’ progress and helps teachers identify their strengths and weaknesses.

2. Math Training for Kids – math app

Android free math app kids
A classic Android math app

Meant for students of ages 3 and up, Math Training for Kids is an Android-based app helps students to pick up four basic concepts of Math – addition, subtraction, multiplication and division – quite easily. You will find tons of interesting exercises and games to give kids much needed practice.

3. CK12 – math app

Not just Math - a whole bunch of great educational material
Not just Math – a whole bunch of great educational material can be found here at CK-12

A free app, available on Android, iPhone or iPad, Windows 8 or 10 and web platforms, CK-12 pairs high-quality content with latest technology. The interactive learning activities it offers include adaptive practice, PLIX, and simulations.

High School students would love its BrainGenie section while those who specifically want to develop their Algebra Proficiency and Higher Mathematics skills should delve into its FlexMath section.

Teachers love the app because it is easily accessible anytime, anywhere; and include workbooks, quizzes and tests too.

4. Colorado’s PhET – math app

This is a treasure trove of math goodness
This is a treasure trove of math goodness

Colorado’s University PhET simulations project is quite popular as a classroom tool in progressive Maths and Science teachers. The animated illustrations can easily be incorporated into lectures as well as homework assignments to help students understand certain concepts easily.

While PhET app is available for $0.99 for Android and iPhone/iPad users, K-12 students can access its PhET simulations online External link  for free to study mathematical concepts like Projectile Motion, Calculus Grapher, and Arithmetic.

5. Photomath – point and shoot math app

Take a picture of your math problems and the app helps you solve them
Take a picture of your math problems and the app helps you solve them

Available for free on both Android and iOS platforms, Photomath allows you to snap a picture of the math problem and get its step-by-step solution! From basic arithmetic to fractions to trigonometry to linear and quadratic equations, it can help you with a lot of Math problems quite easily.

While a good teacher will certainly never allow you to use this app in a classroom, teachers do recommend it as a study support too that students can use at home.

6. Khan Academy – math app and more

The wrath of Khan? Nope - actually a leader in online education for kids
The wrath of Khan? Nope – actually a leader in online education for kids

Salman Khan, the founder of Khan Academy, uploaded videos on Algebra on YouTube with a purpose to provide remote tutoring to his cousin. The videos got more views than he expected and today Khan Academy offers free video lessons to all students through its apps and website.

One can learn anything here – from counting to calculus. There is a dashboard which allows students, parents, and teachers to track the progress of students too.

7. GeometryPad – math app

Geometry pad - great on tablets
Geometry pad – great on tablets

Free for Android and iOS, the app is loved by teachers for making the understanding of geometric concepts easier and ensures better student engagement in class. Teachers can also give assignments for home using it, in which students can practice taking measurements and using the compass, experiment with different geometric shapes, and create complex geometric sketches too.

8. BuzzMath – math app

Buzz math - Anytime Anywhere
Buzz math – Anytime Anywhere

Buzz math interactive math taken to the next level. Primarily a web-based app, it offers over 3,000 problems that are aligned with the Common Core State Standards (CCSS). Teachers love it because it is accessible from any device, offers a variety of input styles, allows students to try again and again, and of course, detailed reporting tools (in paid versions only).

9. Brainscape Flashcards

Available in iOS and Android
Available in iOS and Android

Available on both iOS and Android based platforms, Brainscape Flashcards is unique because it gathers inputs from a student and then, creates a study plan tailored to him or her.

Math tutors External link  love it for its flashcard function, which is quite useful when it comes to helping high school students learn their formulas. Flashcard repetitions in the app are timed according to the individual’s cognitive requirements and have been scientifically proven to help you learn better in half the time.

10. Komodo math

Designed by teachers for families, Komodo builds a solid foundation in maths for children aged 5 to 11. It works on all devices and doesn’t keep kids at the screen for long periods

Expertly designed interactive math practice and animated videos. Motivation built-in to keep learners on track. The app includes over 500 learning games and educational videos.

So that’s our recommended top 10 in an age when attention spans of students are  diminishing rapidly and gadgets play a major role in their lives. We hope that this list helps forward-thinking parents and teachers to find new ways to help their students learn better and keep them interested in their studies.

10 Best Kids podcasts for long summer road trips

It’s that time of year again and we have put together a list of the 10 best kids podcasts for this seasonal tradition – the road trip.

You’re going to need some serious in-car entertainment if your family is planning to drive to a destination over an hour away from your home. A lot of parents don’t exactly think of podcasts as kid-friendly entertainment however there there are a surprising amount of amazing family-friendly podcasts just waiting for the eager ears of your travelling clan.

Check out these kid-friendly podcasts as you explore the world with your gang this summer.

The Radio Adventures of Dr. Floyd

best podcasts for kids Dr. Floyd
The Radio Adventures of Dr. Floyd

A Classic. Painting with words, The Radio Adventures of Dr. Floyd does an awesome job of animating Dr. Floyd’s wacky adventures. With over 300 episodes the show provides countless hours of entertainment. If your kid loves exploring mysterious world, travelling in spaceships, exploring  and solving mysteries this podcast will keep them quiet, at least for the 6 minute episode.

Life of Dad

life of dad podcast safe lagoon
Life of Dad is not only for dads

This one is for all the dads out there, especially the ones with sons. Two dads chronicle their life of video games, diapers, comic books and trying to one up their kid’s moms. Life of Dad is a great show that gives a male perspective on parenting that is often left out.

StoryCub

StoryCub podcast Safe Lagoon for kids
StoryCub – Video stories every day

StoryCub allows kids to watch video versions of the latest children’s books with or without their parent’s attention. With StoryCub, kids can hear stories read by real adults with, or without, pictures to boot. It’s great for long road trips when your toddler doesn’t understand that your hands cannot physically open their favorite book.

Brains On!

Kid's podcast that teaches about science
Brains on! Not just for kids.

This well-informed podcast answers questions to get your kid’s mind moving, like: What happens to your brain when you’re reading a book? Why is the ocean salty? How does a piano work?  Question-based topics by kids is the name of the game here and its great fun. The host interviews kids as they explain the answers to all life’s mysteries in a youthful way. Brains On! is available on just about every podcasting platform you can think of.

The Moth Podcast

The moth podcast Safe Lagoon
The whole family will enjoy these stories

The Moth Podcast brings stories from the world’s greatest storytellers into one common space. This podcast celebrates the diversity of the human experience. Podcast stories range from one man’s heartfelt experience on the traffic-hectic streets of LA to a KGB interrogation and one woman’s journey through extreme weather. If your older kids are up for hearing some otherworldly, life-transforming stories, this podcast is for you.

Stuff Schools Don’t Teach

Stuff Schools Don't Teach podcast safe lagoon
The Stuff Schools Don’t Teach

this podcast is a hidden gem. Teens, young adults, and mom and dad will be excited to listen to this podcast. Stuff Schools Don’t Teach gives teens and young adults a chance to catch up on life skills they weren’t taught during their school years or miss out on. From how to save and budget to how to get a mentor, and history’s unsung heroes.

Sesame Street

podcast sesame street for kids
Can you tell me how to get to Sesame Street?

When all else fails, everyone loves Cookie Monster, Maria, and even the Grouch. Sesame Street brings it’s historically dynamic programming to podcast and video via their website and iTunes. You can listen and watch the Count count to 100 or have story time with Elmo right in your car.

One Bad Mother

bad mother podcast safe lagoon
One awesome podcast from one bad mother

Get some laughs with the web’s resident bad moms with the One Bad Mother podcast. Laugh at the hilarious antics of these moms as they chuckle their way through the various stages, experiences, and emotions of motherhood.

The Moth Podcast

The moth podcast Safe Lagoon
The whole family will enjoy these stories

The Moth Podcast is dedicated to bringing stories from the world’s greatest storytellers into one common space. This podcast celebrates the diversity of the human experience. Podcast stories range from one man’s heartfelt experience on the traffic-hectic streets of LA to a KGB interrogation and one woman’s journey through extreme weather. If your older kids are up for hearing some otherworldly, life-transforming stories, this podcast is for you.

Wow in the World

podcasts kids safe lagoon
Dad’s don’t need to know everything anymore

Don’t be surprised if you find yourself getting schooled by NPR’s first podcast for kids. Hosts Mindy Thomas and Guy Raz take listeners through a weekly conversation around the most incredible kid-friendly stories of the last 7 days. Each Wow in the World Podcast episode kicks off with a series of questions about a new amazing scientific discovery or finding, which are answered through comedy and debate. For example, “How long would it take to get to the closest star outside of our solar system?”  Congrats dads! You no longer need to know everything.

With all of these podcasts at your fingertips (ear tips?) and ready to be listened to, your next road trip should fly by and you have the kids asking you to circle the block once you have arrived so they can hear the end of the latest episode.

Safe Lagoon at the World Anti-Bullying Forum 2019

World Anti Bullying Forum
World Anti Bullying Forum 2019 in Dublin

Safe Lagoon Software is proud and excited to be a part of the  World Anti-Bullying Forum 2019 Dublin, Ireland on June 4-6th, 2019.

Some of the world’s most renowned anti-bullying researchers and practitioners will be attending, presenting and working at the conference, which is a going to be a great event for Dublin University.

The aim of this international and multidisciplinary forum is to broaden our understanding of bullying, harassment, discrimination, ostracism and other forms of degrading treatment and violence among children and youth. The forum will encourage this by sharing knowledge and exploring new perspectives and acknowledging that bullying and other forms of inhumane or degrading treatment have to be understood as a complex interplay between individual, interpersonal and contextual factors.

The forum invites perspectives from different disciplines and areas such as (but not limited to) psychology, social psychology, sociology, social anthropology, education, gender studies, social work, health sciences, childhood studies, political science, philosophy, and criminology. The intention of the forum is to create multidisciplinary and cross-level dialogues, panels and meetings to improve the understanding of bullying and the work to stop and prevent it. The forum in 2019 will also emphasize the importance of cross-cultural and cross-national dialogues and sharing of knowledge and experiences to reach an even more thorough understanding of the complexity of bullying.

Aside from academic contributions, several industry and organisational sessions by the likes of Facebook, Vodafone, Webwise, Bulldog Solutions, McAfee, and UNESCO will also deliver their input into how they tackle bullying and promote online safety within their industries.

In terms of specific topics, there will be a wide range of research areas presented including: school bullying, cyberbullying, sexting, peer and sibling bullying, bystanders, interventions, harassment, policy evaluation, among many others. See the full conference programme here for more detail on the specific talks and presentations.

 

10 Million US parents know why you should use Safe Lagoon

In today’s world where children are “growing up digital”, it’s critical to help them learn healthy concepts of device use. Parents now need to protect their children online and off and teach these online skills to their children. With the average screen time for a child today at a whopping 7.5 hours per day parents are looking for a way to establish healthy usage of technology. There are many parental control apps out there claiming to handle specific online issues for children. But with the launch of Safe Lagoon there is now a single app for families addressing their most important needs.

It’s not just about web surfing anymore

Parents are looking for a one-stop solution which will help them manage and interpret the huge flow of data that kids encounter today across their devices.

In today’s digital age children are met with new threats and challenges everyday including: bullying, privacy, predators and explicit content and more. Left to their own devices, kids lack the knowledge and experience to properly maintain their online safety. Safe Lagoon is a simple tool that can help them manage the complex online world.

Saving Your Time

As we address the challenge of developing responsible and safe usage of connected devices we are saving parents valuable time as well.

When parents use Safe Lagoon they no longer need to spend time with hands-on page by page reviews of their kid’s browser history and avoid causing a scene when they grab their child’s telephone and start scanning text messages manually. The Safe Lagoon app frees up parents by analyzing in the cloud all the channels that their kids use to communicate – and if there is a problem or a behavior pattern that could signify an issue – we send out a notification.

Parenting is hard enough without having to learn a new language  

Parents aren’t always aware of the slang and abbreviations used online today (the good old days of plain old “lol” are long, long gone) and a lot of time can be spent trying to decipher content and serious events can be missed. We take care of that. Safe Lagoon is always evolving and learning how kids speak and communicate today. We have an excellent success rate on understanding jargon, screening with comparisons against the millions of records we have in our database. It would take a huge amount of time for a parent to do that – and to be honest, it’s really boring reading kids texts all the time. Now parents are saving valuable time by letting let Safe Lagoon handle it for them.

Parents Protect Kids Online

Pew Research Center survey of parents finds that parents today have a variety of methods in guiding their kids in the direction of healthy digital habits.

Connected devices are so abundant in a child’s life, that 65% of parents have taken to “digitally grounding” their children when they misbehave.

Infographic

While more and more parents are incorporating parental software tools like Safe Lagoon, most are still taking a hands-on approach to managing their child’s interactions online, from screen time to sites visited. According to the Pew study:

  • 61% of parents say they have checked which websites their teen visits.
  • 60% have checked their teen’s social media profiles.
  • 56% have friended or followed their child on Facebook, Twitter or some other social media platform.
  • 50% have looked through phone call records or text messages.

More and more parents are looking to technology assist them in managing and monitoring their child’s internet use. For example:

  • 39% of parents report using parental controls for blocking, filtering or monitoring their teen’s online activities.
  • 16% use parental controls to restrict their teen’s use of his or her cellphone.
  • 16% use monitoring tools on their teen’s cellphone to track their location.

39% of US parents using parental controls for filtering, blocking or monitoring their child’s online activities equals more than 10,000,000 US parents who have decided to implement software such as Safe Lagoon to protect their children.

The app of choice for parents

From blocking unsafe content and search results, managing games and device screen time, child location, and real-time reporting as well as automated insights into online behavior – Safe Lagoon is simply the best way to protect your kids as they explore online.

Safe Lagoon is a unique and revolutionary parenting tool, which aims to help parents better understand and maintain their children’s digital activity and safety. At Safe Lagoon, we’re excited to bring parenting into the 21st century. We’re working hard to help facilitate strong relationships, and a safer world for families around the world.

Sign up for a free trial and join 10 million other parents who use parental software to protect their kids.

Gaming Devices: a Parent’s Guide to keeping kids safe

Gaming

Children and young people love gaming. In fact, it is often through games that children first start to use technology. According to latest reports more than 41% of young people aged between 5-15 have a games console in their room.

Handheld Games: Handheld games are played on small consoles. Some of the popular handheld consoles are the Nintendo DSi, 3DS, Sony PlayStation Portable (PSP) and the PS Vita. These devices can access the internet wirelessly, and allow for playing games with others online.

Consoles: These devices, like the PS3, PS4, Xbox 360, Xbox One, Nintendo Wii and WiiU, are designed to work with a TV. Consoles like these are capable of connecting to the internet via a home internet connection just like other computers. This allows users to download games or ‘expansions’ to existing games as well as playing online, although a subscription may be required for this. All of the three main manufacturers (Nintendo, Sony and Microsoft) include parental control functions in their consoles that are linked to age ratings systems.

From sport related games to mission based games and quests inspiring users to complete challenges, interactive games cater for a wide range of interests, and can enable users to link up and play together.

Games can provide a fun and social form of entertainment often encouraging teamwork and cooperation when played with others. Just like offline games, they can have educational benefits, helping to develop skills and understanding.

Today’s games consoles have in-built wireless so they can connect to your home internet or other wifi hotspots. This enables a wide range of online functions, such as playing with or against people online (in a multi-player game), viewing films and TV, storing photos and music, browsing the web and chatting to friends.

Internet safety advice is directly applicable to gaming devices because risks of ContentContactConduct and Commercialism also apply:

Content Risks: age-inappropriate material can be available to children in games and through online services.

Some games might not be suitable for your child’s age – they may contain violent or sexually-explicit content. The quality of graphics in many games is very high, so the games can appear very realistic. Many devices allow users to browse the internet, and watch films and TV, and some of the content available is not appropriate for children.

Contact Risks: potential contact from someone who may wish to bully or abuse them.

Many games allow gamers to play with people online, potentially from all around the world. While gaming you can communicate with users by text, voice or video chat. This might mean your child is exposed to offensive or aggressive language from other players. Bullying can also happen, which is known as ‘griefing’ in games, when players single out others specifically to make their gaming experience less enjoyable. Young people can also make themselves vulnerable to contact by those with a sexual interest in children if they give out their personal details.

Conduct Risks: children may be at risk because of their own and others’ behavior.

Specific conduct risks for gamers include excessive use to the detriment of other aspects of their lives. This is sometimes referred to as ‘addiction’. Gamers also need to think about their own behaviour and attitude towards other players, as well as the importance of not sharing any personal information.

Commercialism Risks: young people can be unaware of hidden costs and advertising.

There have been cases where children and young people have got into difficulty by inadvertently running up bills when playing games online. Some young people may also not be aware of advertising in games, for example, within the game there might be a billboard advertising a real-life product, or the whole game might be designed to promote particular products or brands.

How to stay safe

Gaming devices provide a variety of interesting activities and ways for young people to engage with their friends and families. However, it is important to be aware of what these devices can do and how you can talk with your child to help them to use this technology in safe and positive way. All modern gaming devices offer parental controls to help you manage how your child uses their device, but these do need to be set up in order for them to be operational.

Three steps for parents:

  1. Understand the capabilities of gaming devices and how you as a parent can support your child to be smart and safe in their gaming. To help, read the FAQs below. If you are buying a gaming device, why not print our Shopper’s Checklist and ask these questions in the shop?
  2. Find out about the parental controls available – it helps if you are the one to set up the gaming device so you are in control of these. Gaming devices have parental controls to help parents manage their children’s gaming, for example, to prevent internet browsing or restrict access to age-restricted games. Find out about PEGI age ratings to help you decide which games are appropriate for your child’s age.
  3. Talk with your child about safe and responsible gaming and agree a set of family rules. Perhaps you could agree rules with your child about how long they are allowed to play for, how they should behave towards other gamers and agree rules about not meeting up with people they have only met online.

FAQs: Your questions answered

How do I know which games are appropriate/ suitable for my child?

The Pan European Game Information (PEGI) age rating system exists to help parents make informed decisions about buying computer games, similar to the BBFC ratings for films. The rating on a game confirms that it is suitable for players over a certain age, but is not indicative of the level of difficulty.

PEGI age labels appear on the front and back of games packaging. Additional ‘descriptors’ shown on the back of the packaging indicate the main reasons why a game has received a particular age rating. Parents should be particularly aware of the ‘online gameplay’ descriptor which indicates whether a game can be played online.

Encourage your child to only access online games that are appropriate for their age and always check the age rating on any game before buying it for your child, as well as considering whether it has an online component. Games consoles have parental controls so that you can restrict your child from accessing games which are not appropriate for their age (e.g. see the picture at the beginning of the article).

How long should I let my child play games for?

Consider what is appropriate for the users in your house and their gaming needs. This may depend on the type of game they are playing, for example, quest based games are unlikely to be completed within half an hour. Talk with your children about family rules for playing games online, which could cover safety considerations as well as play time limits. All games should form part of a healthy and balanced lifestyle – the recommendation is to take five minute breaks every 45–60 minutes.

Communication

How might my child communicate with people using their gaming device?

Many games offer users the ability to chat with other gamers while playing. Players can ‘talk’ by using Instant Messenger style messages which are typed during the game and they can often use voice chat (made possible through in-built microphones or headsets, depending on the console) which is similar to talking on the phone.

Parental control tools are available, which can limit certain functions in games, including chat. Make sure your children know how to protect their privacy; advise them never to give out any personal information, pictures of themselves, or agree to meet someone in person, either when using online chat or sharing information in their user profile. If your child does play against people they don’t know, make sure they know how to block and report other players and use the mute function which can disable chat in many games.

Encourage your child to use an appropriate screen or character name (also called gamertags) that follow the rules of the game. These names should not reveal any personal information or potentially invite harassment.

In addition to chatting within a game, many gamers chat on community forums and content sites related to the games they are playing. Gamers use these sites to exchange information about the games as well as to provide tips and hints to others. It is important to encourage your child to remember to respect their privacy on these sites too and make sure they know how to report any issues they encounter.

Costs

How can I ensure that my child doesn’t run up a big bill when using their gaming device?

Gaming devices with online networks, such as Xbox LIVE or the PlayStation Network, allow you to make purchases online. This may include games, game add-ons or films. It is helpful to understand how your child could spend money on their device. You should talk to them about agreed spending limits or use parental control settings to restrict spending as necessary.

 

 

 

Safe Lagoon just gave parents a reason to have more kids

Today, by popular demand, we’ve launched a new service package for parents called “Safe Lagoon Big Family”.

You guessed it – it is a package for families who require all the awesome premium features that you can find in our “Safe Lagoon Plus” but with extended protection for up to 15 devices … and folks, it is huge!

Don’t delay, start protecting the Safe Lagoon way today!

 You can find more details here: Safe Lagoon Big Family Pricing

 

Cyberethics For Our Kids

It is not that hard to hide behind the safety of our computer screens, but let us ensure our values and beliefs align with our deeds in the digital realm as well as in everyday life. We need to take a few moments to judge our online behaviors in terms of maintaining respect, kindness and dignity for yourself and the others. To put it simply, our kids need to understand the power and responsibility they have at their fingertips.

Consider the following six tips for raising cyber conscious children with strong cyberethics:

Start early. Don’t wait until it’s too late. Teach kids digital manners from the first time they log on as a toddler and build on that foundation as a child grows. Do not be afraid to include in your cyber lessons all you know about sexting, oversharing, cyberbullying, and more before a situation develops. A good rule to follow is “only share images or comments that you are comfortable with grandma or grandpa seeing”.

Words can hurt. We all know the quote, “the pen is mightier than the sword.” Try to have a heart-to-heart conversation or use stories to make your children understand this essential point. In their young lives, almost every child has experienced cruel things directed at them and could draw from those incidents to appreciate the great power words have.

Empathy at a young age. Seek ways to encourage children to volunteer or pay it forward. This will give children a unique perspective into the lives of others and develop their compassion.  Set them a good example by performing the same things you expect from them, including a rule of always considering others’ feelings before you act.

Credit intellectual property. Avoid a bunch of problems with a basic lesson or two in referencing. Teach them not to still but give courtesy to authors of any picture, video or quote them post online. It takes only second to add a couple of words, but it might take years for someone forgiving your liberty with other people’s ideas and any kind of intellectual property.

Create a technology contract.  Make a list where you clearly outline cyber behaviors that are acceptable and the consequences if the agreement is breached. This sort of contract with your children will help them realise how serious this is and allow everyone be on the same page on understanding the basics of cyberethics.

-based on TeenSafe publication

Everything a Parent Needs to Know About PERISCOPE

Twitter-live-streaming-app-Periscope

Last February, in Ohio, a 17-year-old was raped and assaulted by a man she had only met the day before. How did authorities find out? The rape was streamed online via periscope by her best friend and high school classmate. Now, the friend Maria Lonina, 18, and the accused Raymond Gates, 29, are facing the same charges of kidnapping, sexualt assault, and rape.

The question is was Lonina recording her friend’s attack as a cry for help or for attention on social media? Prosecutors believe the latter.

So What Is Periscope, Exactly?

Periscope works in conjunction with Twitter, which purchased the app in 2015. Users can broadcast live — with no filter or delay — to their followers using only a smartphone. The app lets users stream both audio and video to their audience for an interactive experience that includes feedback and comments. Audiences can not only interact, but watch and replay the video up to 24 hours after the broadcast ends.

Since it is linked to Twitter, live broadcasts are supplemented with social sharing. The app is also designed for mobility, meaning users can spontaneously go live with on-the-go broadcasts that include the broadcaster’s location. It could provide a platform for public speakers to showcase their skills or enable users to share first-hand experiences as they happen, from a neighborhood block party to a fish being reeled in by an angler on a river.

The app’s website shows scenes of hot air balloonists broadcasting live from the sky to friends back home, civilians broadcasting the aftermath of a disaster to their concerned followers and tourists visiting a city for the first time.

All those scenarios are certainly possible with this amazing, ingenuitive application — but it is also possible that teens could misuse its power to send out a live, public video broadcast that they can never take back.

Periscope has only existed since March 2015, but the statiatics tell the story of an app that is taking off, especially in the last few months:

  • There are 10 million registered Periscope users.
  • 1.85 million people use Periscope every day.
  • Users stream 350,000 hours of video daily.
  • Viewers watch 40 years worth of video every single day.
  • Periscope dominates the critical 16-24 age demographic                                                                                                                                                                                                            Today’s teens are accustomed to broadcasting their lives on social media. Periscope, however, can turn their bedrooms into studios. Regular social posts can be edited or deleted, but when it comes to live broadcasts, there are no second takes.  Among the other dangers the investigation uncovered were:
    • The potential for real-time cyberbullying.
    • Sexual harassment, requests for teens to stream inappropriate broadcasts and inappropriate broadcasts being streamed to teens.
    • The potential for viewers to uncover the broadcaster’s personal information, such as username or Twitter account.
    • Location services reveal your teen’s physical location. Once the user’s location was identified, the news investigation plugged that information into a free website that allowed them to track the user’s exact location, giving them location updates every time the broadcaster posted something on social media. Even more troubling is that the location marks are timestamped, leaving a “trail of breadcrumbs” to identify the user’s exact movements, allowing the tracker to follow the user’s physical movements as they go.

What parents need to know

Live-streaming apps like Periscope pose an elevated danger because they combine real-time broadcasting, comment-based interaction and the potential to determine physical location. Periscope’s guidelines urge users to “not show graphic material,” but essentially, anyone can broadcast anything, whether it’s a virtual lap dance or a real-time ice cream truck burglary.

While Periscope is a relatively new app, there are some established guidelines that parents can follow:

  • Get your own Periscope account so you can see what your teen is doing and act as a personal moderator.
  • Turn OFF location services — this is a good idea for all social media accounts.
  • Instruct your teen to be aware of their surroundings and never to broadcast potential location markers, such as their school or home address in the background.

Periscope is a remarkable, innovative app with a powerful potential for both good and bad. Like everything surrounding your teen’s online activity and social personas, the best recipe for keeping them safe is dialogue, honesty and technology.

Monitor your teen’s activity on Periscope, but explain why you’re monitoring — that even if you trust them, you don’t trust the Internet. If teens are breaking into ice cream trucks, they’re likely going to get into trouble anyway. With Periscope, however, an otherwise perfect kid can face a lifetime of regret from one lapse in judgement and one live broadcast.

– Safe Lagoon Team