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Pro­tect your kids on­line with Face­book’s parental ad­vice

Good (UAE) - - CONTENTS - Face­book.com/safety/par­ents

teach them life’s off­line rules ap­ply on­line too

If it’s not some­thing you want oth­ers to do to you, don’t do it to oth­ers. Just as you might tell your child to look both ways be­fore cross­ing the street or to wear a hel­met while rid­ing their bike, teach them to think be­fore they share on­line.

try to be a good role model

The adage that chil­dren will ‘do as you do, not as you say’ is as true on­line as it is off­line. If you set time re­stric­tions on when your child can use so­cial me­dia or be on­line, fol­low the same rules. They need to see that you’re not tied to a screen.

en­gage early

Data sug­gest that par­ents should en­gage on­line with their chil­dren as soon as they are on so­cial me­dia. Friend them when they join Face­book and fol­low them on other net­works – it gets harder to do so if you wait. Even be­fore they are on so­cial me­dia, talk to them about tech­nol­ogy as a whole to help lay the ground­work for fu­ture con­ver­sa­tions.

iden­tify and seize key mo­ments

For ex­am­ple, when your child gets their first mo­bile phone, it’s a good time to set ground rules. When your child turns 13 years old and is old enough to join Face­book and other so­cial me­dia, it’s a good time to talk about safe shar­ing.

trust your­self

Typ­i­cally, you can adopt the same par­ent­ing style for your child’s on­line ac­tiv­i­ties as you do for their off­line ac­tiv­i­ties. If you find that your child responds best to a ne­go­ti­ated agree­ment, cre­ate a con­tract that you can both sign. Or, maybe your child just needs to know the ba­sic rules.

ask your chil­dren to teach you

If your chil­dren are al­ready fa­mil­iar with apps and sites that are un­fa­mil­iar to you, they can be an ex­cel­lent re­source. The con­ver­sa­tion can also serve as an op­por­tu­nity to talk about is­sues of safety, pri­vacy and se­cu­rity. For ex­am­ple, you can ask them ques­tions about pri­vacy set­tings as you set up your own Face­book ac­count. And, as most par­ents know all too well, your child will likely ap­pre­ci­ate the op­por­tu­nity to teach you.

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