Have a conversation
A simple and effective way to get involved with your children and their lives online is through discussion. By maintaining an open dialogue with your child and encouraging them to talk to you about their internet use parents can help children access the amazing resources the internet has to offer whilst keeping them safe online.
Conversation starter ideas:
- Ask your children to tell you about the sites they like to visit and what they enjoy doing online.
- Ask them about how they stay safe online. What tips do they have for you, and where did they learn them? What is OK and not OK to share?
- Ask them if they know where to go for help, where to find the safety advice, privacy settings and how to report or block on the services they use.
- Encourage them to help. Perhaps they can show you how to do something better online or they might have a friend who would benefit from their help and support.
- Think about how you use the internet as a family. What could you do to get more out of the internet together and further enjoy your lives online?
A family agreement is a great way to start a conversation with your whole family about how you all use the internet and discuss together how to behave in a positive way when online at home, at school or at a friends house. Our family agreement advice provides a list of things to consider when creating a family agreement and some examples. The family agreement template provides a framework that will help families set clear expectations for positive and safe internet use.
Alternatively you may need an online safety agreement which doesn't cater to a family audience. Why not use our Online Safety Agreement template instead!
Talking about difficult topics
Often children and young people can see the internet as a source of information and knowledge when they have important questions about their lives, bodies and the world around them and their internet use can raise the need to have a conversation about some very difficult topics.
We understand that talking about these issues can be a daunting prospect for many parents but it is important to remember that you are the best people for your children to talk to. Below you can find links to some great organisations with more advice on how to tackle these difficult topics.