When do we give a mobile phone to our kids?

Ajs - posted on 05/19/2015 ( 4 moms have responded )




My son is 12 and is asking for a smart phone! Suggestions?


Jodi - posted on 05/19/2015




No, Nope, and no way. I would personally never buy a 12 year old a smartphone. I am a teacher of children this age and older, and I honestly don't believe they have the maturity to be able to manage a smartphone independently and responsibly. I have seen nude pictures, cyberbullying and even a suicide, all the result of children having free access to social media through their smartphones before they are mature enough to actually know how to use it appropriately.

My daughter is 10, and she already knows that if she gets a phone before she is old enough and mature enough to pay for her OWN smartphone, it will be a simple phone that makes calls or texts with very limited credit.

My son is now almost 18, and he didn't get a smartphone until he had a job and could buy his own (at about 15), and even then, there were rules around the use of the phone.

But honestly, after my experiences with students, I wouldn't even consider it yet.


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Ledia - posted on 05/20/2015




My son got his first phone when he was 9 years old. It is NOT a smartphone, and he will not have a smartphone until he can pay for it himself.

I never imagined I'd be one of "those" parents who give their kids a phone at such an early age, but I did....
He started riding his bike around our neighborhood with his friends--as opposed to just riding to their houses where they would then hang out. When he did that, I just sent the parent a text that he was on his way, and they would text back when he got there and when he was on his way home--if more than 5 minutes passed between leaving and arriving I knew to call the police. Once they started riding around the neighborhood, I wanted him to have a way to contact me or the police, and a way for me to contact him. Plus, if something does happen, the police can track the phone to find him.
Again, not a smartphone, just an old slider phone. He can have a smartphone when he is ready to pay the bill.

Raye - posted on 05/20/2015




If you child is on sports or something where he would need to call you for pick-ups, etc., then all he needs is a simple phone that has a few preprogrammed numbers he can call. No apps, no internet. Children do not need smartphones.

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