...During the day, your child uses their tablet to do math exercises; but when your child gets home, they only want to play games and watch videos. You know your child shouldn’t be spending so much time playing Roblox or watching TikTok or YouTube, but you’re tired of arguing. When your child is happy and occupied, you can hop on the exercise bike or get dinner started in peace. After a long day, we all need these quiet moments...
In this scenario, your child has their own device (phone, computer, or tablet) and is using this device to text friends, play games (online and offline), use learning apps, take pictures, do schoolwork, browse the web, watch videos, and listen to music.
Preparing for Your Child’s First Device
How to prepare your kid and their device, so they can enjoy the internet, safely.
Your kid is probably excited to get their new device, but it comes with responsibilities
Flip cards for a solution
You’re worried that your children might share personal information with people on the internet whom they do not know.
Teach your kids about the importance of privacy and what personal information (theirs and yours) should never be shared online such as addresses, phone numbers, Social Security numbers, door codes, financial data, and photos (of themselves, their family, their home, etc.).
Without a clear understanding of expectations, asking kids to put down their devices can be challenging. You have to come off as the “bad guy” and that can be hurtful.
Set time limits in advance for your child’s online activity. (Learn more about how Aura’s parental controls can help you set these limits on your child’s device. You can even set time limits for individual apps.) This will allow you to separate the emotional element, leading to smoother transitions. If your kids know they will have a predetermined amount of time to spend online, they can plan beforehand how they will use it — which allows them to maximize the experience and not waste their time, for instance, on random web surfing.
You're worried that all your child does on her iPad is watch brain-melting unboxing videos. If she’s going to be on the device, you would rather her time be spent productively.
There’s a big difference between active and passive screen time (like drawing a picture vs. watching a video). Encourage imaginative play, and download learning or creative apps that complement your child’s unique interests.
The internet is seemingly boundless; you’re worried that your kid will discover something that is way too inappropriate (either by accident or even sometimes on purpose).
Set restrictions on what they are allowed to see. Aura’s parental controls let you easily filter content so that your child doesn’t see anything violent or graphic. Some search engines like KidRex and Kidtopia are designed to only show kid-friendly search results.
Your kid keeps jumping from app to app — playing a variety of games, and constantly “chatting” with people online.
Only allow one app on one device at a time. Avoid constantly adding new apps so that you can keep track of what apps are in use, what their affordances are, and how the interfaces work.
You’re worried your kids will infect their devices with viruses by visiting unsafe sites.
Activate malicious website blocking on your Aura app for all devices in your family. This will ensure that your child won't somehow stumble upon sites that could steal information or install malware on their phones and laptops. (Hint: this is very helpful for adults, too.)
Now... Let's Talk
Let’s talk about recognizing scams and “phishing” links
Let’s talk about keeping your team informed
Let’s talk about model behavior
Let’s talk about making offline time fun
Let’s talk about co-viewing