Episode 022: Pat Hade on Virtual Safety

Pat Hade’s business works with youth sports and educational organizations to form their presence in the digital world, so her team sees hundreds of thousands of posts, tweets, searches and images from students every month. In addition to writing and presenting about using and abusing Social Media and the Internet she collaborates with Virtual Safety Monitoring entities to develop educational content for parents and students.

Her book, Social Media for the High School Athlete, has become a staple in the youth sports community and both Teaching Social Media and a new educational series on Social Media are slated for publication in the spring of 2016. Hade’s work has been featured in numerous publications, media and blogs including USAToday

We know that kids need to be trained to drive a car, or manage their money.  But, for some reason we disregard that kids need to be trained and guided on how to use their electronic devices, social media, and messaging.  The internet and social media are relatively new, and the hazards are relatively unknown.

Pat’s job is to help make people aware of the dangers and benefits of using these tools appropriately.  Kids need to learn the skills necessary to navigate the internet, know the rules, and the boundaries necessary to use these tools properly.  People need to be aware that employers, colleges, landlords, and even banks use our social media for vetting their potential employees, tenants, students, athletes, and loan candidates.  People need to be aware of predators, and posting too much information about their personal lives online.  People need to be aware of the addictiveness of social media and personal devices, and how it affects our brains – our attention span and executive function, and delayed vs. instant gratification.

As parents, we set an example.  When we are constantly looking at our phones and immediately reacting to the notifications, then kids get the message that these devices are important, and maybe even a priority above reality.  Make it a habit and a rule that you don’t need to react immediately to a notification, and not to use the device when we need to be with our children.  It’s about being present, being available, and making our children the priority.  We don’t need to constantly be in contact with the outside world.  Just BE WITH our kids.

In his talk Things as They Really AreDavid A. Bednar warns of the dangers of virtual and augmented reality.

I plead with you to be aware of the sense dulling and spiritually destructive influence of cyberspace technologies that are used to produce high fidelity and that promote degrading and evil purposes.

Please be careful of becoming so immersed and engrossed in pixels, texting, earbuds,Twittering, online social networking, and potentially addictive uses of media and the internet that you fail to recognize the importance of your physical body. And miss the richness of person to person communication. Beware of digital displays and data in many forms of computer mediated interaction that can displace the full range of physical capacity and experience.


Where to find Pat:

[email protected]

@HSSocialMedia . on Twitter

https://www.facebook.com/HSSocialMedia1 . on Facebook

Our course Digital Literacy for HomeSchooling can be accessed at


Your listeners can get 25% off the course purchase price with the coupon code:


The Screenagers website is https://www.screenagersmovie.com


Mentions in this post (may contain affiliate links).

Home Education Council of America

Social Media for the High School #Athlete by P L Hade

You Post What!?: How to Help your Teen use Social Media to Gain an Advantage for College and Future Employment by Tiffany Sunday

Screenwise: Helping Kids Thrive (and Survive) in their Digital World by Deborah Heitner

Hold on to Your Kids: Why Parents need to Matter More Than Peers by Gordon Neufeld

Melinda Gates on Facebook

About the author, Jodi

I live in Richmond, Virginia with my husband, Michael, and our four young kids. We homeschool, and work remotely, so I guess we may take this on the road some day! I have a bachelor's degree from George Mason University in Health Promotion Studies, but I attended five different universities before finally finishing while I was expecting my third baby! I'm a returned missionary from the Hawaii Honolulu Mission for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. I'm sort of a jack-of-all-trades-master-of-none, but I do enjoy reading personal development and parenting books, finding new ways to enjoy exercising, and learning more about being an entrepreneur.

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