Teaching Your Kids to Be Smart about Social Media

The Internet provides so many opportunities to all of us. At a young age, children are learning, playing games, and are connecting with friend and family online. Where there are plenty of good things about the internet, there are many risks as well that kids should avoid. It is important to teach them to use the internet in a positive way to avoid adverse effects on their mental and physical health.

Talk to Your Kids about Media:

All parents are concerned about the amount of time their kids spend online. It’s a hard topic to bring up as the entire society is addicted to this activity. You should first educate yourself about what is good on the internet and what is bad. After that, you should start talking with your child as soon as he starts using social media. Tell them that once something is online, it will stay online. Monitor your child’s activities online and inform them about the punishments for misusing it. You can use keylogger application to keep account of what your child posts online.

Ask your children to set high privacy on their social media accounts. Younger children tend to share more information on the internet, including personal numbers and addresses. It can be harmful to them, and therefore, they need to learn to restrict how much they can share online.

Talk to Your Kids about the Location of Devices:

Any device that your child is using to access the internet, you should tell them to keep the computer or tablets where you can see them. This way, you can keep an eye on what content they are accessing and who they are talking to. Designate places in your living room or study room where they would be allowed to use the internet. Talk to them that they are not allowed to use it privately.

Discourage Your Child to Bully Others Through Social Media:

Children who are not actual bullies in real life can become bullies on social media due to anonymity. Tell your children that bullying is wrong in any situation. They can get bullied in return as well. Therefore, they should avoid it since the beginning.  Bullying online can be either sending mean texts to someone or posting a picture or video of someone without their permission. It doesn’t make anyone feel good. So, ask your children about their feelings when they get victimized. Give them instances about how, in a situation, they would feel. This would discourage them from bullying others on social media.

Reassure Your Child That They Can Always Talk to You:

Discipline your child in a way that doesn’t make them scared of you. They should always be able to talk to you. Sometimes, a child may encounter some upsetting content involuntarily. It disturbs the mental health of the child. He needs to disclose the information and share his thoughts with an adult. Build such a relation that your child shouldn’t shy from sharing his feelings with you. If they don’t share much with you voluntarily, you should ask them occasionally if anything bothers them.

Communication is the key to solve your problems. But children follow what they see. Be a good role model for them and avoid frequent use of social media to set an example. You should also be aware of what kind of content you are posting and sharing on the internet. These are the best things you can do to keep your child safe from the risks of social media.

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