Guest Post: Being involved in your child’s life online

November 3, 2013 Off By Laura TMOT
With all of the parental controls, safe browsers and new apps being released to help parents stay in control of their child’s online activities, the choice can seem overwhelming. However, the best parental control available is still you – the parent. Being involved in your child’s online life from the very start can go a long way towards ensuring that they remain safe and secure online and that any dangerous or inappropriate activity is prevented before it ever starts.

Unlike the previous generation, most children now grow up with internet access from the very beginning of their lives. Google has now reached its 15th birthday, and there are toddlers across the globe playing with iPads before they can walk. The internet is an incredible learning experience for children and can be a wonderful educational and social tool. However, if you make it a learning experience you can embark on together, then you can make yourself a natural part of your child’s online learning experience. Check in with the experts at Quib.ly to get community answers, tips and advice for ensuring that your child only visits a child safe website.

Without your guidance and input, your child could all too easily stumble into potentially harmful content. Both illegal and inappropriate sexual and violent subject matter exist online and strangers can introduce your child to such materials without your knowledge. As well as this, social networking sites, instant messaging and emails make cyberbullying and online grooming real problems for both parents and children alike. Being involved in your child’s online activities mean that this is less likely to arise.

Out in the open

Make online activities something open and to be shared. Place computers in an open space and encourage open internet usage rather than private time alone online. You should also monitor the amount of time your child spends online so it is not excessive.

Talk to your child about the possibilities of someone not being who they say they are. Ask them how they know that their new online friend is really who they claim to be. Encouraging your child to become a critical user without scaring them can help them to become more deductive when it comes to who they communicate with.

Have regular, unobtrusive chats with your child about their activity activity, so it becomes commonplace for them to speak to you about what they have been doing. At the same time, let your child know that some things must be kept private. Children are often unaware that the pictures or passwords they give out online stay there forever, even if they delete it on their end.

Overall, your child can have a fulfilling and exciting online life with family and friends. If you are a big part of that, it will be normal for them to speak to you about their online life and any problems or worrying experiences they may have, thus making it easier for you to keep them safe and protected.

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