Online Road Safety – Tips for Parents and Guardians
Updated: Oct 5, 2022
Be present in the child’s daily digital life. Ask the child daily how their day has been on digital roads. It’s always best to start by discussing the nice things that the internet has to offer. Rather than focusing on screentime and time limitations, it’s more important to be aware of what the child is doing, where and with whom. Ask the child to show and tell you about the websites and applications that they like to use and visit.
Follow the age restrictions set by experts for applications and games.
Check the child’s public profiles: ensure that the child does not use their own picture as a profile picture publicly, and that they don’t share personal information such as their address/phone number/school or any specific details about their interests or pictures of their pets.
Start using the phone parking lot. The successful use of the phone parking lot allows for regular breaks from using digital devices. Its’ use helps the child calm down at night and secures their sleep quality. Common rules which have been agreed upon at an early stage protect the child in digital environments and reduce possible conflicts in the future.
It is important to advise the child that in addition to the nice and pleasant things, also strange and scary things can be encountered online. Teach the child to take screenshots starting with nice and pleasant things. Advise the child to always take a screenshot of confusing situations and to show it to a safe adult.
Ask the child’s permission before taking or sharing a photo of them – children learn by example. Respect the child’s privacy – photos are difficult to remove from the web afterwards.
Everyone makes mistakes, also in digital environments. Encounter these situations with empathy and turn them into learning opportunities .