When Should Children be Allowed to Start Using Social Media?
There are many benefits of social networking and social media platforms. But at the same time, there are also many risks and consequences. Therefore, we are, in this article, discussing which is the best age for children to start using social media.
What is the best age for children to start using social media? Social networking has become the norm in everyday life. In fact, most adults spend several hours a day using it. It is currently not surprising to see children between two and three years of age with mobiles, tablets, and computers. In addition, children around the age of eight or nine want to start using social media.
The Internet, and more specifically social networks, have many benefits for people. However, there are also many dangers that you may not be aware of. This is why you might ask yourself: where should we set the limit? When should children be allowed to start using social media?
We will try to help you through this controversial question of when children can start using social media.
Children on social media
According to the UNICEF study “The state of the world’s children 2017: Children in a digital world”, one of three people browsing the Internet is a child. More specifically, in the United States, there is no minimum age to start using social networks. Each social network has its own requirements on how old the users must be. However, this does not determine when the best age to start using social media actually is.
Many parents use the excuse that their children do not have social media because they do not have a mobile phone, computer, or tablet to use.
We can almost certainly say that children will start using social media whenever they want, with or without your permission.
Recommendations for when children can start using social media
If you have realized the reality that the kids will start when they want, we have some tips for you here. It is important to follow some recommendations so that children start using social media in the least dangerous way, and know how to use the internet safely.
Be a good role model
We always say that children imitate everything they see. Therefore, you need to set a good example before yelling at your child for not using social media properly. You can then help your child when they make mistakes.
Explain its advantages and disadvantages
It is important that children know already from the beginning about the various benefits that social media has. But they also need to know about the dangers. Depending on the age of your children, you can use real examples of children using social media to show them what can happen on the internet.
Therefore, they must ensure that they have a private account. Under no circumstances should their accounts be public. Talk to your children so that they do not disclose personal information through these networks. In addition, they should not add or talk to people they do not know.
Limit times for when children can use social media
Children should not live connected to their electronic devices. Therefore, you should limit the use to a time that you think seems appropriate. Many parents only allow their children to use social media on the weekend. Others say they can use social networks for only one hour a day, and others only one day a week. You have to decide which boundary you think is best.
Help your children identify cyberbullying
In addition to explaining the advantages and disadvantages of social networking, be sure to mention the important problem of online harassment, more commonly known as cyberbullying. Children need to feel safe and know that if they ever get bullied online, they need help and support from their parents. They also need to know that they will come to you immediately.
In summary, there is no special age for children to start using social media. You can’t really do much to stop them. However, you can teach your children how to surf smartly on the internet and to manage their social networks responsibly in the best possible way.