THE leader of a peak body for Catholic parents has urged mums and dads to monitor their children’s online activity closely following the death of a 13-year-old boy from an Internet game.
Federation of Parents and Friends Association of Catholic Schools in Queensland executive director Carmel Nash said children did not have the capacity to comprehend the dangers of some online content by themselves.
“Our message, as always, is be aware of what your children are engaged with online and talk with your children openly about the types of activities and dangers online,” Mrs Nash said.
“Children do not have the ability or maturity to understand many of the consequences of these games.”
Last month a 13-year-old boy died after playing the dangerous choking “game” where children cut off their air supply to intentionally be in an unconscious state.
There are thousands of online videos and tutorials explaining the trending game.
Mrs Nash said parents needed to talk openly with their children about dangerous activities that might be popular among students.
“Parents can talk to their children about the risk and consequences of these games as well as online safety,” she said.
“There are various websites for parents to access information, for example, esafety.gov.au which has resources for parents and families.
“Use safety settings on computers to protect young people from accessing inappropriate materials, but talking and being aware are the most important things a parent can do.”
School staff should also be aware of the trends that are popular with children and talk about the risk and consequences.
“(Teachers) can also talk about risk and consequences to students and make parents aware of this activity so both home and school activity can be monitored and talked about with children,” Mrs Nash said.