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How to Make Sure Your Children Stay Safe on Social Media?

Author Fustany Team
Time 3/25/24, 12:44 PM
 Ensuring Your Children's Well-being on Social Media
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Social media can be a great way for children to stay connected with friends and explore interests, but it also comes with risks. As a parent or foster carer, you'll want to make sure your kids are using social media responsibly and staying safe online. Here are some tips:

 

 

Set Age Limits

Most social media platforms have age minimums, usually 13 years old. Take these seriously - don't allow your child to create an account until they reach the appropriate age. Social media can expose kids to inappropriate content and cyberbullying before they're emotionally equipped to handle it. Stick to age limits. Consider even waiting longer than the minimum age if your child seems not ready.

If you are fostering and your foster children are keen to use social media, discuss this with your social worker or agency.

 

 

Go Over Privacy Settings

Sit down with your child and walk through all of their privacy settings on each social media platform. Make sure their accounts are set to private, so only approved friends can see posts. Turn off location sharing and review who can contact them directly. Update these settings regularly as platforms change. Check settings on all devices your child uses.

 

 

Friend/Follow Your Child

Don't spy, but do friend or follow your child to keep up with their activity. Make sure they know you're watching out for them. Set expectations that you may monitor their accounts if you see suspicious behavior. Let them know you're doing this because you care about their safety.

 

 

Set Screen Time Limits

Social media can be addictive. Set healthy limits around screen time to prevent it from interfering with sleep, exercise, family time and homework. Use built-in parental controls on devices to restrict use after a set time in the evenings. Agree on limits together. Consider no phones during meals and other family time.

 

 

Talk About Appropriate Content

Remind your child to think carefully before posting pictures and videos. Once it's online, it's out there forever. Talk about privacy, personal reputation, and respecting others online. Lead by example in what you post and share. Make sure they understand their digital footprint.

 

 

Know the Signs of Cyberbullying

Watch for signs like anxiety about going online, hiding screens quickly, or avoidance of school. Ask who they interact with online and how those people make them feel. Take immediate action if you suspect cyberbullying. Report bullies on the platforms. Get help from the school.

 

 

Have Open Conversations

Discuss social media openly in your household. Talk about both the fun parts of social media, like sharing with friends, and the dangers, like online predators. Create an environment where your child feels safe coming to you about anything unusual they encounter. Don't overreact so they stay open.

 

 

Teach Critical Thinking

Help your child be a critical thinker online. Talk about fake news and manipulative ads. Remind them not to believe everything they see. Verify sources are legitimate. Ask questions about what they see and encourage deeper thinking.

 

 

Learn Together

If some platforms are new to you, explore and learn about them together with your child. Understand how they work so you can better discuss safety. Don't dismiss new technology as scary - be willing to understand it.

 

 

Staying involved, using privacy tools responsibly, monitoring time online, and keeping an open dialogue with your kids can help ensure social media remains a safe place for them as they connect with peers. The online world moves fast, so revisit safety steps and settings regularly.

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Fustany Team

Fustany Team

Fustany.com is a fashion & lifestyle portal for Arab women to inspire them to live a life full of creativity.You can reach Fustany's Team on info@fustany.com

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