Online Safety Tips Children Ages 11 to 14
Children this age are "savvier" about their Internet experience, but it's still a good idea to supervise and monitor their Internet use to ensure they are not exposed to inappropriate materials. You can use Internet safety tools to limit access to content and Web sites and provide a report of Internet activities. Children who are 11-14 years old generally have accepting attitudes. If your child does not demonstrate an accepting attitude about following your guidelines and rules, then you should have a strong suspicion as to why not. They may already be "up to something" that you may not be aware of but should be. They may be very capable of following commands on the computer, using the mouse, and playing computer games. They are, however, highly dependent on adults or older siblings to help them interpret online information. Make sure children this age understand what personal information they should not give over the Internet.
Here are some safety tips to consider when you go online with your 11-14 year old:
It's a good idea to foster open and positive communication with your children. Talk with them about computers and stay open to their questions and curiosity.
Set clear rules for Internet use and STICK to them.
Insist that your child not share personal information such as their real name, address, phone number, or passwords with people they meet online.
If a site encourages kids to submit their names to personalize the Web content, help your kids create online nicknames that give away no personal information.
Use parental safety tools to create appropriate profiles for each family member.
Set family safety tools on the medium security setting, which should have some limitations on content, Web sites, and activities.
Keep Internet-connected computers in an open area where you can easily supervise your child's activities.
Help protect your child from offensive pop-up windows by using the pop-up blocker that's built in to Internet Explorer or your web browser.
Encourage your children to tell you if something or someone online makes them feel uncomfortable or threatened. Stay calm and remind your child they are not in trouble for bringing something to your attention. Praise their behavior and encourage them to come to you again if the same thing happens.
Read more about how to deal with online predators and cyber-bullies.