Get advice to help children explore, learn, and play safely on their first connected device whether it’s a smartphone, apple watch, smart speakers, laptop, games console or tablet.
Get advice to help children explore, learn, and play safely on their first connected device whether it’s a smartphone, smartwatch, laptop, games console or tablet.
Are they ready for their own device?
From Ofcom’s research, we know that half of ten-year-olds now own their own smartphone and by the time they are five, 35 % of children own their own tablet. As device ownership seems to be getting younger and younger, it’s important to consider a couple of things to ensure children get the best out of their connected devices.
Once you’ve considered these questions, if you think they are ready, you may want to create a family digital agreement. This will ensure your child fully understands the responsibilities of owning a device and the possible online risks that come with it.
If you have decided to go for a brand-new device for your child here are few things to consider:
Laptop & tablets
Have you talked about the online risks?
Having access to their own devices can encourage children and young people to have more freedom to explore, interact and create. However, there are online risks your child should be aware of such as online grooming, cyberbullying, inappropriate content, etc.
It’s important to use in-built device controls to create a safer environment for them to explore. Review these settings regularly and ensure your children understand why these settings are helpful, so they don’t try to bypass them because they are keen to see a particular type of content.
If you can, set up their device safely before giving it to them. Have a discussion about why you are limiting the time they can spend on certain apps/games, or why the device can’t be used after a certain time in the evening etc. Involving your children in these discussions and decisions means that they are more likely to follow the rules provided.
Check out our set up safely guide for more information.
Setting digital boundaries
See here for some advice on how to tackle these topics.
Staying engaged in their digital life
For more age specific advice, see our age advice guides.
See related advice and practical tips to support children online: