For kids and teens today, social media platforms have become an essential part of their lives, much like telephones were to you at their age. There are plenty of good things about social media, but also many potential dangers and things that you would want your kids to be away from. It is not realistic to expect kids always to make the smartest choices while posting something on their social media platforms like Facebook or Instagram, and sometimes this can lead to problems. Hence, it becomes imperative for parents to teach their kids how to use social media wisely.
Understand The Social Media Platforms Used By Your Child
Suppose you are not a social media user yourself. In that case, you can read about them on the internet and gauge which social networks are appropriate to your child’s age and what type of functionality is available. It would help if you also remembered that some websites and mobile applications that aren’t social networks could often have some social aspects like a chatroom or the ability to create an online profile.
Banning your child’s social media use can be useful but rarely as they are likely to have access to a tablet or computer at progressive private schools in Abu Dhabi or a friend’s house. It can also be challenging to control their use of devices or keep up with various social media platforms. The best thing you can do is reach an agreement with your child about their social media usage. You can try pre-approving the sites they can join and encourage open conversations about what they experience or see online.
Enforce Good Online Etiquettes
Receiving mean comments on social media can hurt your child’s self-esteem, and writing such comments can get them into trouble. Have a conversation with your child about proper social media etiquette. It will teach them to respect everybody, irrespective of gender, caste, or religion. You can also teach them to utilize the tools outlined in most social platforms’ resource guides. For example, Instagram lets you filter out offensive or inappropriate words from the comments.
Show the Importance of Privacy Settings
Privacy settings are necessary and to highlight this, sit with your children and go through every set together to make sure they understand them thoroughly. Also, explain to them that passwords are there to protect them against things like identity theft and should never be shared with anyone.
Many teens need to be reminded that a platform’s privacy settings do not make things they post online private. The images, thoughts, and behaviors they share online will instantly become a part of their digital footprint indefinitely.
Online relationships are part of typical adolescent development. Social platforms can help support teens as they explore and discover more about themselves and their place in this grown-up world. The only thing you need to be sure of is that your child is behaving appropriately in both the real and online worlds. Keep lines of communication open and let them know that you are there in case they have any doubts, queries, or concerns.