Kids ask a million questions: Why do I have to learn math? How do airplanes fly? When can I choose my curfew? Occasionally, a question comes along requiring more than a simple answer (or a distraction while you quickly look it up). When your children ask these questions - or even when they don't - take the time to help them understand important issues.
Here are six questions your kids don't know how to ask you.
How do I stop being bullied?
It's terrible to think about someone hurting your child, physically or emotionally. Sometimes children keep bullying a secret, so check out their online activity. If you notice bullying or your child talks to you about it, listen to him or her seriously. Take advantage of resources about cyberbullying to help you address your child's specific situation.
What should I do if I see someone naked on the computer?
Talking about nudity and sexual topics can be awkward, so make it easy for your children to approach you. If you are calm and straightforward, they are more likely to turn to you when they have questions about material they find. Use tactics backed by research to talk in age-appropriate ways about sex, pornography and your family values with your children, whether they are 5 or 15.
How do I talk to someone I like online?
Be yourself. It's awesome advice, but what kid hasn't heard (and ignored) it? For that matter, what adult doesn't occasionally ignore it? Still, offer the advice, and then bolster it with wisdom about what should and should not be shared online because, for many children, it isn't common sense.
For example, sexting (sending sexual messages and images) is a widespread practice that can hurt your child, personally and legally, so teach them the dangers of this and other activities. From there, talk about good things to share with a crush online - hobbies, recent activities, friendly comments and so on.
Why do I have to be nice to people I don't like?
Children tend to be candid, sometimes with comments you'd prefer they keep to themselves. Encourage honesty while adding kindness to the list. From interacting with peers to keeping the peace with strangers, cordiality always comes in handy. Additionally, the adage that you never really know what is going on with someone else holds true. Help your children grasp this concept with examples from your life, or even their lives, to instill the benefit of beneficence.
Why do you get more TV and computer time than I do?
It's difficult for kids to understand why adults follow different sets of rules. Sure, it's nice to set an example, but you have different responsibilities, and "because I said so" may not fly. Explain why you use the computer at times when they aren't permitted or why you watch TV to decompress before bed when they need to have lights out.
Why do you have to see what I do on the Internet?
As a parent, part of your job is protecting your child. Even teenagers need the help, although they're sure they don't. Let your children know that, no matter what they do, you are going to care for them. Perhaps you want to keep it from them that you track their online activities, but if you're open with them about it, tell them you might see dangers they can't recognize, especially under the watchful eye of an app from WebSafety.
Spur any discussion about online activity with the help of the WebSafety app. Parents can start conversations and answer their children's questions with WebSafety, which monitors mobile devices for signs of inappropriate behavior, bullying, and more. Parents can be notified when any bullying or gossip is happening in your child's online world, leading to conversations about bullying and what to do when it happens.