What can parents and carers do to encourage children’s inclusion of those who might be differently abled online?
It is important to take the children and young people by the hand and accompany them. Depending on their abilities, this support can be tighter or broader. For this, it is enormously important that the accompanying adults orient themselves in the digital world and know their way around. This includes looking at online games, dealing with content creators and understanding the dynamics. Visit Connecting Safely Online for further support.
How can parents and carers of vulnerable teens with SEND support their use of social media and other online spaces?
You should work out rules together with teenagers. This also includes rules for the adults, e.g. I don’t simply refuse a game or a social network, but look at it with my child beforehand.
Accompanying adults must then also monitor compliance with the rules. This means staying on the ball, taking an interest and “checking in” on the digital world every now and then.
What can parents and carers do to ensure their vulnerable teens are safe when using social media?
In this case, relatively close control, good rules and always talking about it. Sounds banal; it is not always easy and yet super important for all adults and their children.
Should parents and carers encourage the use of online communities and social media for teens who may be vulnerable?
Good question. I think it always depends on the individual case. And depending on the ability, more or less close monitoring and control applies here as well.