I think this depends a lot on the child, her maturity and your ability to monitor or restrict their activity if you aren’t there at the time. It’s important to view online safety in the same way as we do any other personal safety issues such as road safety and that unsupervised internet access should only be allowed when children can demonstrate safe and responsible online behaviour.
Here communication is key. Open, realistic age-appropriate communication between parent and child. About what kind of websites are and aren’t okay. About what kind of behavior online is and is not okay. Restrict Internet access to a family room (not your child’s bedroom), where you can gently supervise. Be interested rather than restricting. Ask you child to show you what she’s doing, what she’s learning. Make this topic a discussion at your dinner table or a outing. Discuss any incidents that arise and help your child defend herself from the cybercrimes like bullying.
Parental supervision may change as children get older and can mange online risks better; however other systems (such as parental controls, education and communication) should also be in place.
Make sure that your child is cybersmart, visit www.wisenetizen.com to access free resources about internet safety for your family.
Take Care 🙂