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Back to School: 10 Tips for managing digital device access during the school year

It’s back to school time for many households around the nation and globe. The transition from summer mode to school work mode can be a challenge. Our friends at Remo MORE, a smart home app for families, offers tips for parents to use smart home technologies to prepare kids for the start of the school year.
1.     Make rules and stick to them. Set time limits on kids’ daily device usage for entertainment, and hold them to it. There are device management solutions that allow you to restrict online time, which can help you enforce the rules.
2.     Make sure kids can handle the device. These days, some kids get smartphones in kindergarten, while other parents make their children wait until middle or high school. You know your kids best, so make the right choice for them.
3.     Password protect all devices. Set up a password for every device, and make sure you create separate profiles for each child who uses them. Different ages may require different restrictions, and this will enable you to manage them all. 
4.     Set restrictions on apps and TV channels. Not all apps or television channels are appropriate for children, and if you have a good device management solution, you can easily block inappropriate content.
5.     Filter web content. To protect kids from inappropriate web content, you can set filters, such as under age 18 content only. You can also block content from sites that contain certain words or themes.
6.     Set blocks on outgoing content. Kids don’t always know what is appropriate to share, such as videos or pictures. One instance of bad judgment can cause endless trouble. You can block specific types of outgoing content to keep kids safe.
7.     Monitor online activities. You can’t be there every minute, but there are tools available that allow you to monitor online activities across all device types. As a parent, you monitor what they do in the real world; it makes sense to keep tabs virtually too.
8.     Talk to children about how to protect themselves online. Kids need to understand that there are real dangers in cyberspace. Talk to them about cyber-bullying, danger from online predators and other hazards.
9.     “Friend” your kids online. If your children are on social media, you can keep an eye on their activities if you “friend” them of Facebook and follow them on Twitter or other platforms. It’s also a good idea to play online games with them and interact via apps.
10.  Don’t be afraid to use parental control tools. Being a parent has never been an easy job, but in some ways, connected devices make it even harder. Luckily, there are parental control solutions you can use to manage it all.

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