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Protect your kids online with Facebook’s parental advice
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.
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.
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.