Kids And Cell Phones

by KidsSafe on August 31, 2012

Is there a kid who is of school age that does not have a cell phone these days? Its crazy just how connected kids are with each other these days it really is. At the risk of sounding old I remember when I was a kid and I would get off the school bus go home get changed and go and play with my buddies. Of course these days as soon as the kids get off the school bus they are texting, calling, facebooking, tweeting or whatever other new thing has been introduced by the time you read this article.

These are not TOYS!!

The point I am trying to make is that whether or not you “get” it cell phones are a huge part of your kids life and you really need to accept that and make sure they are being responsible with them. I have a few ideas that I know from my own experience as a dad that have worked in making sure my kids use there phone properly.

Does My Kid Really Need A Phone?

At first I asked my self this, but the fact is there have been numerous times when I have been out or my son has and he has needed to get in touch with me. Such as a trip he and his friends took to the movies and got stranded him having a cell phone was a great thing. I can remember times when I was a kid and I was out and really could have done with being able to call my parents. So I would say that yes a cell phone in this day and age is very important to a kid, but it also gives you a good piece of mind.

What About Huge Bills?

This no doubt is one of the biggest concerns and I had it as well (hey I am Scottish after all) The fact is however you actually have a great deal of control about the amount of credit on the phone your child has. You can get them a pre paid phone where they buy top ups for the phone, but I found this to be an absolute nightmare. I would go for the monthly contract where you can put a cap on just how much usage they get.

These days the cell phone companies are falling over themselves to offer you tons of minutes, texts and internet data all at competitive prices. My advice is most definitely to go for a contract phone. My son has so far never managed to run out of minutes or texts, but I have told him if he uses all his allowance in a week then its tough luck and he will just have to wait until the next month.

What About Safety?

This is another huge concern and one that I had I was worried about my son getting mugged for his phone or even some weirdo’s getting his phone number, but as long as you the parent take the responsibility of teaching your kid that having a cell phone is a huge responsibility and a privilege for them then I am sure they will be fine. At my sons school if you are caught with your phone out in a lesson it is taken off them until a parent goes in to get it. I personally love this as it is a great way of making them realise you do not wave your phone about in public. Being 100 percent honest you really need to have trust that your kid is going to do the right thing as long as you tell them what they can and cannot do I am sure they will be fine.

Final Thoughts

Overall I think that a cell phone for a kid really is not a bad thing. AS long as you make sure you are in control of the bills and that there is a cap on it so they can’t run up big bills. Also remember that all the cell phone companies want your business so you are in a great position to negotiate never just take the “sticker” price see if you can get a better deal or get something free.

 

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