This is such a massive subject area that it’s hard to know where to start. Like everyone, we have struggled with keeping up to date with everything that is happening. As our daughter gets older we need to be even more diligent and help her navigate the online world. It’s something she needs to understand so she can not only live independently but live safely.
The websites below have helped us. If you can recommend others please let us know firstname.lastname@example.org.
Cyberbullying Guide For Parents
Family Online Safety Institute
The Ultimate Parent Guide for Protecting Your Child on the Internet
The Ultimate Guide To Safe Online Browsing
A free download of Share Aware is available.
There’s lots of debate about when to give children a smartphone. We don’t want to offer advice on this as it’s your decision. You know your children better than anyone, and when they’re ready. Our daughter had a phone at the age of 12 but even today doesn’t use it for its original intention. She uses it more like a games console than an actual communication tool. We have taken some basic safety measures. She has an iPhone so we have put restrictions on Facetime and downloading apps and of course the dreaded in-app purchases.
One area in which she still struggles is text etiquette. We have given her these texting tips:
1) Keep each text short – say one thing in each text
2) Do not use more than 3 emojis in a text
3) Do not send another text to the person until they have texted back