Discussion Guide

Start Talking About Social Media & Platforms

Even if your child doesn’t have their own device, they may still have online access via other shared devices. Now is a great time to get to know which apps and gaming platforms your child is on or interested in, before giving them their own device.
illustrated icons that look like apps


Why talking about this is important

In preparation for giving your child access to their own device or social media account, you can build their understanding of online safety and transparency by creating an open dialogue. Talk about what they want to explore and share online.

In this guide you will:

  • Understand general best practices related to social media and gaming platforms.
  • Help children understand how setting limits keeps them safe.
  • Validate their feelings so your child knows that you have their best interest at heart and to encourage honest conversations in the future.

What to expect from your kid

Kids at this stage tend to be very literal in their thinking. Clear language about what is safe/unsafe about apps and gaming platforms gives them a better understanding of when to ask an adult for help. Encouraging them to ask questions creates a more open dialogue and you can always come back to the conversation later if they aren’t ready to share.

First steps

How to start talking

It’s likely your child has some understanding of how these platforms work. Take time to explain different aspects of interacting with others online. Kids learn by doing, so get cozy and explore these topics together, like when:
  • They ask to use a shared device.
  • They have been watching / engaging on a device for an extended period of time.
  • They ask to download a new game or app on a shared device.

What do family members use their devices or social media for?

Conversation Script

Let's play this out

Related Discussion Guides

Now that you’ve started talking about platforms, it’s time to set up conversations about online behaviors using one of these other discussion guides.

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