Ranking high on the ol’ Christmas wish list for tweens and teens is technology: phones, iPods/iPads, laptops, and more. If you’re giving the gift of tech, are you also giving the gift of safety?
I’m not always eager to admit that my 8 year old daughter has an iPod with WiFi access. And she got it when she was 7. Don’t judge me, though. My reasons are valid. She’s just “that kid” who is tech savvy and love making movies, music, and chatting with her friends. Our family is made up of frequent FaceTime users, and she loves how it connects her to her pals when they’re not at school. I was hoping having the ability to text me would help her spelling, not so much.
Mr. AP and I are wise and savvy enough that we were specific on how/when/why the iPod was to be used, and we had some ground rules for being safe. It didn’t make her 100% immune, but when issues arose (and they did) we knew how to handle them.
If you are giving your kid a gadget this Christmas make sure you both know how to keep them safe while they use it. I.e. no texting while crossing the road, no phones at the dinner table, etc. And, if that gadget means they’ll have access to the internet, you need to discuss their online presence and safe social media use. Nothing is EVER really deleted from the internet once it’s been shared. Nothing.
We like the parent info guides, FAQ’s and videos found here: Common Sense Media. They’ll get you familiar with social media if you aren’t already, and they’ll walk you though any new apps and tips for parents.
We want your online and mobile experiences to be positive and productive, so we have created these 2 printable contracts for your family to get you started on the right foot. Download them today, and enjoy a safer, more positive experience.