My son who starts 5th grade tomorrow will be getting an iPhone by the end of the school year. My husband and I think our kids need a cell phone once they start taking the school bus. A cell phone is helpful for many reasons. We use it to call our kids to dinner in our house when we don’t want to scream. My girls help me navigate when my car nav is failing me. And texting is turning out be very handy to communicate with my teens. But I’m not sure my son needs another screen just now. He’s already on screens more than his two sisters combined! It’s time to make a contract with him regarding screen time! I’m using The Smart Talk LifeLock to start that conversation and get it to stick.
LifeLock, Inc., and National PTA® have launched a new, free resource for families that helps parents have conversations with their children about using technology and agree on ground rules together. Called The Smart Talk, this digital tool is designed to empower families to make smarter, safer choices online and help build the next generation of digital citizens.
Smartphones and most apps come with privacy settings to protect personal info. Select who will choose privacy settings for Tai’s devices.
Next comes the question of parental controls:
Will you set up parental controls so you can both have access to Tai’s devices, including email, texts, IMs, photos, and videos?
Password protection is next:
Will you use a passcode on all devices?
Some apps and accounts require screen names and passwords. Will you set these up together?
To avoid over-sharing and protect your family’s privacy, we recommend the following ground rules for posting private info online. Select the ones you want to include in your agreement:
Don’t publicly post our address or when we’re home or not home.
Never share or post passwords. Ever.
Don’t share your birthday (or anyone else’s), especially not the year.
Be respectful when you comment online. Don’t say anything that you wouldn’t mind reading out loud to someone like your teacher.
I like the bit about creating good passwords:
What do you both think makes a strong password? What are some password do’s and don’ts? Practice creating a really tough password together.
Finally, the actual contract of when screens are to be turned off and how many hours my son is allowed on screens! How about you? Would creating a contract with your child help with online safety? If so, visit the Smart Talk site to check out the online safety resources and create your own personalized family contract to encourage healthy digital habits. Best of all, it’s FREE! I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own. Follow PragmaticMom’s board A Teachable Moment on Pinterest.