If asked, every parent would say they want to keep their kids safe online. However, statistics have shown that children are more and more at risk online than ever before. Teens and tweens are more at risk than any other age due to the fact they have increased independence, and are more likely to seek out relationships online.
So, what is the secret to keeping our teens and tweens safe online? Educating our children about the dangers online can be done a few simple ways. Here are a few internet safety tips for teens and tweens.
Teach The Important Things!
Teach your kids the important things! Here are a few things you want to make sure your kids know:
- Never share passwords with anyone that you and your parents haven’t agreed on.
- Don’t purchase anything online (even free items) without parental permission
- Never share addresses, birthdates or other personal information online.
- Don’t open documents or files from people you do not know. This includes pop-ups and email.
- These conversations can happen anywhere and must happen often! Share teachable moments when issues of online scamming and identity theft come up on the news. Share what could have been done to prevent the crime.
- Be available for your children on a regular basis. Create an open door that allows your children to come to you when they have done something wrong.
- Continue these conversations regularly. Online safety is not a one-time conversation. Studies have found that 93% of parents have talked to their teens about online safety, but only 61% of teens say they have had this discussion.
- One of the most important tips we can teach our children is to be cautious. If our children are aware of the dangers out there, they can be taught to think twice before falling for a scam.
- Teach your kids to trust their instincts. If something feels uncomfortable it probably isn’t right.
- Make sure they know to NOT meet individuals they have met online in person without a parents’ permission. Explain the dangers of online predators in a way that won’t scare your tweens and teens but that will make them aware that there are dangers out there.
Our children are growing up in a world full of technology. This opens up a whole new world for our kids but also a world full of dangers. As parents, we need to do our best to educate our children about how to stay safe online. These internet safety tips for teens and tweens can help us do just that!
Misty Bailey is a Christian wife and work at home homeschool mom. She resides with her family in Southern Ohio. She shares her struggles with time management, becoming unglued, homeschooling and finding joy in the everyday moments on her blog Joy in the Journey. You can also find her on Facebook, Pinterest and Instagram.