Parenting Coach

Practical ideas for social, emotional and behavioral challenges

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Have him think three times, then “send.”

What you can do

Teach your child to think about consequences before sending an online message. Encourage him to come up with a word or phrase he can use when he’s about to hit the “send” button.

What you can say

“Jacob, I want you to remember that everything you put in an online message could end up being seen by a bunch of people. That’s why the only information you should share is stuff you wouldn’t mind posting on the school bulletin board.”

“To help you remember to pause and think, it’d be good for you to come up with a phrase you can say to yourself every time you’re getting ready to hit ‘send.’ There’s an old saying, ‘Think three times before you act once.’”

“Maybe you could repeat a shorter version of that to yourself: ‘Think three times.’ The three things you could be thinking about are, ‘Do I really want to send this? Will it make anyone upset or embarrassed? Will I be upset if this gets shared with others?’”

Why this will help

Children with learning and attention issues can be very impulsive. You can help your child understand the far-reaching audience he can have on the web. Talking about this and working on proactive strategies can help him learn to make good decisions online.

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