All the news & happenings in the world of your Emagine-Nation!

 

Poll: Site Features

What feature will the kids like the most?




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Emagine-Nation Loves Google!

by Wanda Taylor

Helping your kids search safely!

Google Safe Search + Custom Safe Search = Peace of Mind

Are you tired of needing a masters degree to understand parental control software?  Are you tired of knowing that your kids know more than you do about technology and that they are using it to get around conventional safety methods?  Are you tired of worrying about your kids being exposed to content that is not only not age appropriate BUT could also be harmful?  Surveys continually show that computer security is a top priority for parents and educators everywhere.  Knowing what is needed is different than knowing what to do about it or even how to implement the comprehensive set of solutions.  While safe search does not replace proper parental or educational supervision, Emagine-Nation.com has spent 7 years figuring out how to make your job easier and your kids safer.

Content filtering is a complex issue.  How does one tell the difference between the "sex of an amphibian" and it's "gender"?  Does your child know the difference when they craft a search query?  While computers are wonderful learning tools, they can expose kids to dangers like unwanted content and inappropriate contact from adults through the internet.    What are some of the ways that kids run into trouble trying to search information?

  • Explicit content exposed unintentionally or intentionally.
  • Explicit photos and videos.  Do you know that once a child gets on YouTube that they are free to look at the millions of unfiltered videos offered?
  • Inaccurate and personal information shared about others and to others (as in cyber-bullying).
  • Clicking on ads that contain malware and adware.

How can you teach your kids to recognize safety issues when searching for content?

  • Beware of "free" products or services.  Remember to teach them that things are rarely free and often require personal information.
  • Boxes or words that say "ad" or "advertisement". 
  • Adult-oriented graphics such as alcohol, diet pills, sexually suggestive figures.
  • "Pop-ups" - windows that appear suddenly and are unrelated to the content.  Avoid popups.
  • Strobe and animated effects.  These are designed to catch their attention for sales purposes or to capture personal information.
  • Automated downloads or words that say "Download Now".  Teach them to ask you about it before they click to download.

What we did about it.

Emagine-Nation.com uses Google Safe Search for Kids.  In addition, we have assembled thousands of hand-selected sites approved one-by-one for safety and age appropriateness.  When your child attempts to go to a place they shouldn't, search for something that you wouldn't approve of, or search for something that isn't age appropriate, they will see a "content cop" that warns them that they are unable to see their search content or go to a site they've requested.  We have set the filtering to the highest degree of security and continue to monitor for keywords that might otherwise slip through.  Vigilance is our goal and our highest priority. 

What you can do about it.

Educate your child about the dangers of the internet.  Have the "cyber talk".  But, more importantly, teach them about safe access, safe search, and safe inquiry.  Register and download the Emagic8r, Emagine-Nation.com's kid-friendly, safe and secure browser, search engine, social networking site, and virtual world.  Let us help you keep your kids safe.

Please feel free to tell us what you think or what your stories are about keeping your kids safe.

Go to www.emagine-nation.com and sign up for our pre-launch mailing list.  We are giving away prizes, free memberships and other goodies if you sign up by 12/1/13.

 


Innovate, Collaborate, and Create....It's Personal!

by Wanda Taylor

     Now THIS is what kids can do!

For a long time we have known that kids, when given the opportunity, will collaborate in amazing ways using their imagination, their creativity, and their belief that they can. 

Co-creating Content

Kids are no longer willing to have content delivered to them by teachers attempting to impart their knowledge.  Eistein said, "I have never taught a single student.  I have simply provided the environment for them to learn."  Our roles as educators are changing.  It is our job to facilitate the process, provide the guided exploration, and insure their safety as they co-create content and engage with the learning process....their learning process.

Find out what we're doing...

We are NOT creating just another world or bundling independent applications for kids to play or learn with.  We ARE creating an environment where applications, features, and learning quests are linked together to provide a place for kids to learn, have fun, and get stuff done.

Won't you check it out and be a part of the opportunity?

 http://campaign.emagine-nation.com

 

Cyber-Bullying....It's Still Personal!

by Wanda Taylor

Cyber-Bullying is Very Personal!

Cyber-Bullying has been described as "using computers, cell phones, and other technologies to hurt, scare, or embarrass other people."  It can be overt or it can be extremely subtle to others, though very personal to the victim.

According to BullyingStatics.org, there is a very strong link between bullying and suicide.  "Suicide is the third leading cause of death among young people, resulting in about 4,400 deaths per year, according to the CDC.  For every suicide among young people, there are at least 100 suicide attempts.  Over 14% of high school students have considered suicide, and almost 7% have attempted it. 10 to 14 year old girls may be at an even higher risk for suicide.  And, according to ABC News, 160,000 kids stay home from school every day because of fear of bullying."

What are the symptoms?

  • Giving away personal items and saying goodbye to people.
  • Expressing that they "can't take it anymore".
  • Showing signs of depression, changes in sleep or eating habits, and withdrawal.
  • Excessively looking, and getting upset over, internet posts.
  • Excessive crying or a complete lack of emotion.

What can you do about Cyber-Bullying?

Start by understanding the technology tools that your children use.  Become familiar with how often they use them and how they gain access to them.  Pay attention to what they are saying or not saying.  To do this, you might need to slow your life down enough to engage with your children in ways that promote communication.  Discuss bullying and cyber-bullying.  Make sure that you explain the dangers of the internet.  Be clear with them that they do not ever know who they are actually engaging with in their chats, email, etc.  Just as you would teach them to go to an adult or an adult authority if they were physically being threatened, teach them that the same holds true on the internet.  Take all threats seriously - better to be safe than sorry. Talk to the school and district about their cyber and campus policies about bullying and safety.  And, most important, ASK THEM if it is happening to them or someone they know.

Plenty of Resources to Guide You:

Here are a few links to get you started:

What are we doing at Emagine-Nation.com about Cyber-Bullying?

First, we are an educational resource site for parents, educators, and kids.  Secondly, we take any type of predators seriously and have spent 7 years designing safe browsing and searching, as well as creating very strict social networking features.  We encourage collaboration and engagement within a safe and secure browser and virtual world.

Won't you help us complete this mission...

We would appreciate a donation to help us with this mission.  If you want to see what we're all about, please check out our campaign at http://campaign.emagine-nation.com.  We hope that you will get involved by donating.  In addition, we would appreciate it if you would share this post, our campaign, and our site to stimulate the conversation and education about this topic and others because "it's still very personal."

 

Emagine-Nation.com Launches Pre-Registration!

by Wanda Taylor

Emagine-Nation.com Launches Registration!

After nearly 7 years, Emagine-Nation.com has launched its pre-registration site for the upcoming May 4th, 2013 launch!

Registrants can get their very own Passport to Your Emagine-Nation by logging into www.emagine-nation.com and launching the registration page. Members can sign up as parents, kids, and educators. Parents are encouaged to register their child(ren) with them present as they will be able to customize their avatar and pick out their avatar name right then.

 

Passport to Your Emagine-Nation.com!

If kids are under 13, an email will be sent to their parents asking them to verify their registration and participation.  Kids will earn 5 Tribets (Emagine-Nation's online currency) for registering.  They can return each day to earn more by taking a Room Tour-of-the-Day, an Adventure-of-the-Day, and playing a Game-of-the-Day.  They will also receive a Quote-of-th-Day.  Tribets can be used at launch to create and customize each member's personal room, further customize their avatar, and unlock games and activities.

Kids over 13 will not need their parent's permission.  And, educators are also invited to sign up in order to take advantage of all the resources included in the site specifically for educators, such as lesson plans, websites, webquests, and more. 

Registraion Link:  www.emagine-nation.com

 

Security and Safety Features

Emagine-Nation.com has been designed and developed by licensed school psychologists, mental health counselors, certified educators, and academic coaches.  We researched the privacy and safety issues that kids, parents, and educators face today.  We interviewed kids to find out how they were getting around parental controls, school firewalls, and other monitoring systems.  We went to the source and designed an infrastructure and enviornment unparalleled in safety. 

Some of our features include:

  • safe search with content filtering
  • secure browser
  • internet application blocking with parental code access
  • video, picture, and file sharing controls, parental approval, and administrative approval
  • friend requests approved by parents
  • whitelist of educator-approved websites with parental ability to approve and add to whitelist (site grows as parent and children use it)
  • in-world site linking only (they can't get there from here by clicking on an ad, YouTube video, or other external link)
  • chat and group chat moderation
  • and more

Parents Don't Need a Doctorate in Parental Controls!

Kids know what to do.  And, even if parents are protecting their kids with at-home computer monitoring, kids access the internet at school other friends' houses, on their tablets, and on their phones.  Access is almost impossible to lock down unless parents download and use Emagine-Nation.com as their child's sole browser, search engine, and virtual world to play in.  We've designed it to be easy to use - we've already done all that work for you. 

Register today for Emagine-Nation.com, where your kids can have fun and get stuff done!

 

Watch our Launch Video

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


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About the author

Wanda Taylor, MCC, is the CEO and creative designer of Emagine-Nation.com. With over 23 years of experience in the world of learning, education, psychology, and technology, Wanda knows the value of curiosity, imagination, and discovery learning.  Follow Wanda and see why she believes that Emagine-Nation changes everything!

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