When it comes to helping your child use media constructively, you’ll likely do what comes naturally; talk with friends, family members, your child’s teachers or maybe even your pediatrician. You might also arm yourself with on- and offline resources, like the ones listed below.
- American Academy of Pediatrics' Media Matters Campaign
This site includes policy statements, articles and public education brochures created by pediatricians.
- Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood (CCFC)
- Center for Media Literacy
This non-profit organization offers a large number of parent and teacher media literacy resources, organized by subject matter and grade level, in its online catalog. Some of the resources are available online free of charge, while others are for sale.
- Common Sense Media
A not-for-profit site that features reviews of movies, music, books, games and other Web sites intended to help families make decisions about what they watch, hear, read and play.
- Just Think Foundation
The site for this San Francisco-based non-profit organization offers resources for parents, teachers and youth.
- Media Awareness Network
Based in Canada, this site includes many resources for educators and parents as well as games intended to help children hone their media literacy skills.
- Media Education Foundation
This non-profit educational organization sells videos that cover media issues relevant to adolescents and teens. Video topics include the way girls and women are portrayed in media, consumerism and hip hop culture.
- Net Family News
At this site, parents can subscribe to a weekly e-mail newsletter that includes family-relevant news clippings and also a blogroll of others who are writing and tweeting about children and technology.
- New Media Literacies
Based at USC’s Annenberg School for Communication, this site houses print resources and videos on such topics as remixing and reading in a participatory culture.
- Parent Further
Run by the Search Institute and drawing on the National Institute on Media and the Family, the “Technology and Media” section of this site includes information on cell phones, social networking and a range of other topics.
- PBS Teachers: Media Literacy
The PBS Teachers's section on media literacy includes a quiz that parents can take about kids and media use, as well as links to other resources and classroom ideas for educators
- Born Digital: Understanding the First Generation of Digital Natives
by John Palfrey and Urs Gasser
Referring to people born after 1980, this books looks at the social and legal issues facing young people and the adults who guide them.
- Convergence Culture: Where Old and New Media Collide
by Henry Jenkins
Written by a communications professor (formerly at MIT, now at USC), this book weaves together trends in popular culture and emerging media that are shaping the world in which young people are growing.
- Hanging Out, Messing Around, and Geeking Out: Kids Living and Learning with New Media
by Mizuko Ito et al
Growing out of a collaborative project funded through the MacArthur Foundation’s Kids’ Informal Learning with Digital Media, this collection of essays focuses on young people’s use of media at home, in afterschool programs and online.
- Into the Minds of Babes: How Screen Time Affects Children from Birth to Age Five
by Lisa Guersey
This books summarizes research on children and media, highlighting study findings with easy-to-follow descriptions.