Kids are getting cell phones much earlier than ever before, but many parents don’t realize how important it is to establish clear rules before you give a mobile device to your children.
For me, it’s not so much an issue of age but rather of controlling how my kids use a smart phone. There are so many apps with games and social networks that it is mind-boggling. To be honest, I think most children beg for a cell phone for everything you can do with the device aside from speaking on the phone. Tweens would rather text than call their friends.
My youngest daughter’s involved in so many extracurricular activities that a cell is becoming a necessity so I can keep track of her, or she can reach me in case of an emergency. Since she is only 8, I am concerned about how I can also limit what she accesses and how much time she can actually spend using the apps, even if she is not using data. That’s why the new Zact phone is something I am trying out for her. It comes with so many customizable settings that if you take the time to program it, you really cannot go wrong. That way you avoid your kid accessing questionable sites and can even control how much screen time is allowed per day.
However, even with all these parental controls, before I give my little girl a cell phone for emergencies on the days she has after school activities, the rules of the game have been clearly established. Just as we can give it to her, if she misbehaves or misuses it, we can take it away.
After enforcing a technology contract with her older brother, we have learned that it’s best to keep the rules short and simple or else they become unenforceable. You must also clarify what the consequences will be in case your kid misbehaves or misuses their phone.
Here’s a list of 10 rules you should consider establishing before you give a cell phone to your child:
When do you consider is a good moment to give a cell phone to a child?
Disclosure: I received a Zact mobile phone to review but all opinions are my own.
MORE ON BABBLE: