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What Age To Get A Phone Number For Kids?

Discussion in 'Schoolgoers & Teens' started by vidukarth, Aug 19, 2021.

  1. vidukarth

    vidukarth Platinum IL'ite

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    Hi,

    My child will be going to 7th grade coming school year, I see other kids in my child's class having phone with data plan to make calls both over internet and through number. My child is not having a phone yet, wanted to know if it is common for kids to have in middle school, and if helps them for safety purposes too. Kindly advise.
     
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  2. Rihana

    Rihana Moderator Staff Member IL Hall of Fame

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    For a 7th grader in the U.S., I think a phone is a must have. The benefits far outweigh the disadvantages. At the top of the list, would be my peace of mind as a parent. With all that is happening in the world and in U.S. schools, and after my friend's child in another state was in a classroom with an active shooter, even more so.

    Other reasons would be that I don't want my child to feel left out in any way in middle school and with friends outside of school or at extracurricular activities. The number of ways in which the children use their phones is so high that it is an essential part of their lives.

    Then there are other benefits like a family whatsapp for reminders and related stuff. They can also join the extended family whatsapp groups. But then aunts/uncles might interrogate them 1-1 about family news and updates. : )

    In middle school, I would suggest a not very fancy phone if the child agrees. And definitely install parental control software (paid version). This needs some research as they have some funny limitations. Like, in one, I couldn't view the websites visited in incognito mode. We found Qustodio to be the best when we last used such software on phone, laptops. It still seems to have the highest reviews.

    If looking for a new phone and open to both Apple and android, good to keep in mind that the parental control software usually has lesser default access on iPhone. So, the software like Qustodio asks for more invasive permissions on iPhone.

    Another use is Google Maps location sharing.

    All that being said, my children had friends who got phones only in high school, and they are seemed OK with it.
     
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  3. vidukarth

    vidukarth Platinum IL'ite

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    Rihana,

    Thank you very much for your detailed response and also on the software information for more parental controls.
    I am also looking more for the safety aspect. The main reason i had to post this question was, yesterday they had school SSL activity without an end time, so I gave my phone to my child to call me back when they were done, otherwise I did not know when to pick up.

    Appreciate your response.

    Thanks.
     
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