Sleepover Parties and Digital Device Use

sleepover-parties-digital-device-use

Sleepover parties generate lasting memories for our kids and lasting bonds with their peers. Some of my greatest childhood memories were while staying at a friend’s house and now my two boys beg to sleepover with a friend or have a friend stay the night just about every weekend. Today, digital media and screen time have turned sleepovers into a new environment and have become part of the parental discussion before sleepovers – should my kid bring their device, will you monitor their use, what time will you take their devices away for night, will they be behind closed doors with their devices?

Video rentals and late night board games have given way to streaming movies, social media and internet connect game consoles. Connectivity to even more people outside of the sleepover is now an option. The peer pressure and potentially skewed judgment of fun with friends mixed with available connectivity can lead to some embarrassing or reputation damaging consequences.

Adult content, chat rooms, webcam chat rooms, desired attention and bullying on the web and on social media are all very real threats that kids could face during the well intended sleepover. And then of course, there’s always the discussion of sneaking out to prank another friend or get into other mischief. Did you ever sneak out at a sleepover? Do you worry your kids will?

The MamaBear app can help minimize anxiety when you let your children stay the night out. Our location and social media monitoring can put your mind at ease and reduce the risk of potentially dangerous situations for our kids.

Give your children freedom to create some of the best memories of their lives when they aren’t with you. They can learn powerful lessons in independence, responsibility and accountability. But, you don’t have to suffer with worry and anxiety or text them every 5 minutes to check on them. Let the powerful suite of tools MamaBear app offers alert you to only the information needed to protect your kids. Parents can receive alerts if the child leaves the house or moves at preset driving speed. Social media alerts give parents an early warning about compromising photos, posts and inappropriate contacts and followers on Facebook and Instagram. The MamaBear child monitoring app gives parents the tools they need to sleep easy while the kids spend all night doing what they do best, being kids.

iPhone vs. Android: MamaBear Weighs in on Smartphone Shopping for Your Kids

iphone vs android kids

It’s a must for the MamaBear team to stay up to date on the latest technology, news and developments in the mobile industry. We strive to deliver the latest technologies available in the major Android and iPhone devices that integrate with our MamaBear family safety promise. Lately we’ve had more than a few parents ask which phones we recommend, and why. Android phones and iPhones are by far the largest portion of the smartphone market. Here’s our comparison to help you determine the best option for your kids.

iPhones for Kids

Pros

There’s no doubt that the iPhone is incredibly popular in design. iPhones integrate well with other Apple products through use of iCloud and offers great device parental controls built in the settings. Kids love Siri and access to many well-regulated apps for hours of entertainment. The ability to save on data costs is also a nice benefit using imessaging when connected to WiFi.

Cons

iPhones are expensive. The designs are so popular that only 2-3 versions of iPhones are on the market and supported by Apple at any given time. Families are also finding that the new power adapter port on the iPhone 5 isn’t compatible with older iPhone technology like docking stations and power cords. Using iPhone with tracking and monitoring apps can also become a bit more difficult as developers have tight guidelines for app features.

Android Phones for Kids

Pros

Unlike iPhones, Android powered smartphones have a wide spectrum of models and prices from several manufacturers. This can give parents leeway to get the phone that fits their family’s needs well. Many Android powered phones tend to have upgradeable memory and are extremely customizable. Another big advantage that comes with Android phones is the insurance that mobile carriers often provide. Android phones are generally easier to insure against loss, theft and accidental damage than with the Apple replacement program. We also experience faster development cycles with greater opportunity to introduce in demand monitoring features like text message monitoring.

Cons

Android phones aren’t without their faults. In general, we’ve seen parents have more success with child safety apps than with built in Android settings. Unlike iPhones, Android phones have hundreds of makes and models. This can make research before buying quite a bit more difficult than picking the popular model in the store. The newest Android operating system aren’t uniform meaning owners of older Android models might have to wait for the newest platform updates.

Iphone Vs Android  for Kids – The Verdict

When it comes to smartphone shopping for the kids, we think the Android platform wins out. Ultimately, the generally lower price points, a wide range of options and ease of replacement makes Android the best option for kids of all ages. In addition, location monitoring, device monitoring also becomes more efficient with Android devices. iPhones are excellent devices and we are definately apple fans, but today we think the Android platform is the best option for our kids. We’re proud to have MamaBear on both the Google Play Store and the Apple App Store. Check it out and let us know what you think!

Have Worry-Free Summer Travel with Mobile Apps!

worry free summer travel

Summer is such a great time to spend time together as a family! There are so many options for new experiences and memories as we loosen up boundaries with our children. With today’s technology more parents are looking for a little helping hand to relieve some parental anxiety during the freedom of summer. Here are a few practical scenarios the MamaBear App or similar technology can help with worry-free summer travel.

The Beach and Boardwalk

Large beaches, particularly the beaches at vacation destinations usually come complete with boardwalks or other tourist oriented attractions. Not only do we want time to relax, our kids want some freedom to safely explore the surrounding entertainment. Location apps like MamaBear can help you set boundaries and get alerted should your children leave a designated area. Talk to your kids about safety and helpful check in and location features available through apps on their phone.

The Amusement Park

Amusement park trips are one of the most common summer travel destination for large families. The variety that amusement parks can offer families means there is usually something for everyone. Something for everyone can also mean splitting up to fit it all in. MamaBear location features help parents watch a child move in near real time. This means a child can enjoy several rides, games and attractions without having to drag the whole family along. In sprawling amusement parks, MamaBear can even help with something as simple as sending the kids to the nearest restroom and back, but giving the kids reassurance they can tap the “come get me” button if they get turned around.

Sporting Events

One of the most memorable events from any summer travel experience is going to see a major sporting event. While many families are lucky enough to live in a city with a pro-team, other families take a day or weekend trip to experience their favorite team first hand. A day at the ball field or stadium is a great time, but sometimes boisterous crowds, tailgaters and huge crushes of people can get a bit nerve-racking for families. MamaBear can help parents find kids and help kids find parents in all of these instances.

MamaBear is one of the best options available to help parents, and children, enjoy the experiences of a summer vacation to the fullest. MamaBear can support the freedom to develop family memories as well individual experiences for memories that will last a lifetime.

Download the MamaBear app for Apple devices here.

Download the MamaBear app for Android devices here.

MamaBear App’s Top Three Tips for Summer Safety

summer safety for kids

It’s Summertime! When most of us were kids there was no holding us back from summer fun and extra time for discovery and exploration. Even in a world that’s way more complex than ours was, every year summer still means more free time for millions of kids.

Here are our top summer safety tips for and ways MamaBear can help you be in the know and keep the family safe.

1. Water Safety

Teaching your kids how to swim is number one. Then all of the water safety precautions will follow – wear sunscreen, no wrestling in the water, know where the lifeguards or parents are, look out for each other.

2. Camping Safety

Parent chaperones are always best. Nonetheless being prepared with a first aid kit, bug spray and sunscreen are good ideas. Location devices can also be very useful when camping. Installing MamaBear on a camper’s iPhone or Android Smartphone can give kids quick access to parents in case of emergencies while offering parents and chaperones up to date location information about the kids.

3. Safe Road Trips

The freedom of summer usually means some form of travel. This can mean single day trips to local destinations for some, or longer road trips for others. MamaBear’s sound advice is to make sure your kids have a smartphone, a car charger for it and a regular charger. Smartphones are one of the best tools to help kids stay safe on the road – but NO texting and driving. Kids can use a smartphone for directions, travel tips, taking pictures and certainly checking in with mom. MamaBear can let parents monitor trip progress and driving speed, as well as offer children an easy to use option to contact parents if there is an emergency on the road.

These favorite summer activities will give our kids such wonderful experiences. We encourage loosening up the boundaries with the help of technology to ease our minds! MamaBear can help parents with summer safety for kids and provide a variety of ways to keep tabs on our children’s whereabouts and activities. Location monitoring, social media monitoring and driving speed alerts means kids can explore and parents can still work. Let us help you keep track of the kids this summer by downloading MamaBear from the Google Play Store and Apple App Store.