Setting out a written agreement can save a lot of time and energy in the long run. The important thing is to be consistent and fair. Remember to make age-appropriate changes and to enforce non-compliance. Loss of non-homework related computer use is usually an appropriate consequence. When you sign the agreement, be sure your children understand that the terms of the contract extend beyond home to any device.
- I will set up the home computer in a family room and prohibit use of laptops in bed rooms. On school nights, I will ensure homework time takes priority over all other activities in the family room and that the ambient is conducive to study.
- I will seek out solutions for blocking and filtering inappropriate Internet content for my children.
- I will model acceptable, healthy on-line behaviour and media use.
- I will set reasonable guidelines and rules for computer use by my children and will discuss these rules, posting them near the computer as a reminder. I will be diligent to monitor compliance with these rules, especially regarding the amount of time my children spend on the computer.
- I will frequently check to see where my children have visited on the Internet and will regularly check their list of friends on social media sites.
- I will make or find a list of recommended sites for my children to visit.
- I will try to get to know my child’s online friends, just as I try to get to know their other friends.
- I promise not to use a computer or the Internet as an electronic babysitter.
- I will provide my children with opportunities for other types of entertainment and recreation involving outdoor and/or physical activity.
- I will not overreact if my child tells me about a problem they are having on the Internet, but will work with them to solve the problem and prevent it from happening again. I will report illegal or suspicious activities to the proper authorities.
I agree to the above.
- I understand that my parents will supervise my time online and use software to monitor or limit where I go online. They will set rules about how much time I spend on electronic media. I know they are doing this to protect me.
- I will share my passwords with my parents only. I will NEVER give out my passwords or any of my family’s passwords to anyone else, not even friends or other family members.
- I will limit my time on the Internet to:____________a day, excluding homework. I will not text or use my mobile phone between the hours of: ______ and _______.
- When using electronic media and while online, I will behave politely, including using clean language and showing respect for others. I will not pick fights or use mean words or spread gossip.
- I will not give my name, address, phone number, school, or my parents’ names, address or phone number to anyone I meet on the computer. I will ask my parents before posting photos.
- I will never click on any links in emails or open attachments from people or sources I am not familiar with.
- I will not enter competitions to win free things nor will I buy things on the Internet without my parents’ permission. I will show my parents any messages saying I’ve won something as well as those that ask for private information, such as my birth date, address, or bank details, etc.
- I will never ever meet with anyone I’ve talked to online without getting my parent’s permission first.
- I will never download games, music or videos without parental consent, as I know many viruses can infect our computer this way.
- I will talk to my parents if I ever feel uncomfortable or upset on line by someone else’s actions.
I agree to the above.