While social media can be a distraction, the many positive
impacts it can have for parents are often overlooked.
As a work-at-home mom, social media helps me stay connected to
others-not only in my work-but also to fellow parents struggling
with the same everyday trials and tribulations of parenting.
I try to use social media in ways I feel are productive:
Blogging: Preserve memories, keep up with photo
taking and editing
Facebook: Keep in touch with friends and
family, keep up with current events, schedule playdates
Instagram: Share photos while we are on the
Pinterest: Find new recipes, read parenting
tips, research fun and educational activities for my children
All too often we hear about how social media, the Internet and
too much screen time is stealing the quality time we "should" be
spending with our children. These articles preach to parents: Put
down the phone and step away from the computer.
While I am the first to admit that sometimes having a constant
connection to the world at our fingertips can be a distraction, my
use of social media-Pinterest in particular-actually improves my
Improves parenting? Absolutely! By spending five minutes on
Pinterest this morning while having my morning coffee, I was
inspired to bake banana bread and chocolate zucchini cake (with my
children as helpers), make beef stew for dinner, read a quick
article about parenting a strong-willed child and find an adorable
craft to celebrate fall.
I know I'm not alone.
Kristin Riva (kjano44), mom of Carson, 4, and Chase, 3, says she
checks Pinterest at least twice a day-usually on her lunch break
and again before bed.
"I have pinned ideas on child behavior, games/crafts,
age-appropriate learning activities, and healthy, but kid-friendly,
recipes," she says. "I have also started using more green/homemade
cleaning products because they are cheap and easy to make and I
know they are much safer around my kids. Also, I don't feel I'm a
crafty person, so seeing many inexpensive and easy games and crafts
to do with my kids motivates me to do them."
The photos make it so user friendly. Often, I will hold one of
my kids on my lap and scroll through the photos. Sometimes my son
will see a photo of an activity or a food he thinks looks appealing
and then we do it.
For the non-crafty mom, like Brooke Earnest (bearnest14), mom to
Colton, 7, and Callye, 5, the craft ideas are endless. "(Pinterest)
has changed the amount of crafts I create with the kids," she
The wealth of ideas available for every situation make Pinterest
especially parent friendly.
As a room mom for my children's preschool Halloween party this
year, the first place I looked for ideas was Pinterest. One simple
search and I had more ideas than I could ever use.
Kathleen Ricci (mintoad), mom of Christie, 7, Anna, 5, John, 4,
Leah, 3, and baby Daniel, touts Pinterest with helping her to
organize the millions of ideas available online.
"I'm more likely to remember to make a craft because of
Pinterest. Before I'd bookmark the site or save an email and it
would get lost in a list."
Now, she pins a photo to remind her of the idea and can quickly
find what she's looking for. "Pinterest has mostly given my
thoughts, Internet travels and ideas from blogs an organization and
better way to utilize those ideas."
So, the next time a fellow parent is at the playground and
staring at their phone, don't be so quick to judge. Maybe they are
on Pinterest planning the next fun, educational activity for their
little one to enjoy.
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