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Digital Safety: An Ongoing Conversation
Though you may have covered the basics of digital safety when your child started using shared devices, the internet continues to evolve and so should conversations around digital safety. Leverage key moments to keep the conversation going.
Why talking about this is important
Online safety should be treated the same as offline safety, and should be ongoing based on your child’s device access and developmental growth. As your child gets older, these conversations may transition from protective to supportive, giving them space to develop the skill set for navigating things on their own and to know when to get help.
In this guide you will:
- Take an online course and/or consider signing a family safety contract together.
- Let your child know that you are always there for them as they are exploring online.
- Ensure your child knows to go to trusted adult if someone makes them uncomfortable or unsafe.
What to expect from your kid
Schools may be covering digital safety or digital citizenship more frequently, but what your child uses the internet for at school may be different than at home. Explaining how to use the internet responsibly can help them in both settings. There are many different types of caregivers and family schedules, so this may look different for everyone.
How to start talking
It may feel daunting for both parents and kids to talk about sensitive topics or negative experiences online, but it doesn’t have to be overwhelming to start off. Look for moments in your everyday life to educate on the basics. Here are some key moments:
- They begin asking for their own device.
- They want to download a new app.
- They begin playing multiplayer games with friends or strangers.
- They tell you about a friend or someone at school seeing something weird online.
- They begin spending more time on devices.
Let's play this out
Related Discussion Guides
While you’ll come back to conversations about digital safety as your kid grows up, it is also a perfect entry point to one of these other discussion guides.