Quick Tips: Kids + Mobile Phones + Parties = Trouble!

Filed Under: Mobile Usage

  • H osting a party is a great way for kids to develop their relationships and establish their social circles.

  • While a party is usually fun for all, throw in a bunch of hormonal teenagers and the party can become drama central. If your child invites a group of friends over, remember the same rules apply to mobile phones as they do for alcohol, drugs and other inappropriate content. These things should be strictly off limits. You might wonder, why mobile phones? When used in a group setting, mobile phones can open the door to a variety of irresponsible behaviors - sexting, bullying, and gossiping, to name just a few. If you are the parent of the child who is hosting the party, it's important that you understand how teens can misuse their mobile phones in a party setting and then supervise accordingly. Here are some guidelines and things to look out for when your teen plans a gathering at your home:

  • Mob Mentality

    The most common phrase associated with mobile phone misuse at a party, "It wasn't me, it was the group…" When a group of adolescent or teenage kids gets together, individuality can easily be suppressed. Throw mobile phones and texting into the mix, suddenly the opportunity to make fun of other kids becomes very real and very easy.

  • Circle of Friends

    Pay attention to the social makeup of your teen's group of friends. If the friends who are coming over fall into some of the typical roles (Queen Bee, Sidekick, Messenger, Pleaser/Wannabe, Torn Bystander), it may be even easier for drama to occur, and for that drama to escalate through texting and mobile phone usage.

  • Phone Parking

    When your child's friends are over, designate a visible place (e.g. in a basket in the kitchen or family room) where they all have to park their phones upon entering your home. With the phones in an off-limits public spot, there's less temptation to misuse them.

  • Pre-Party Rules

    Inform other parents about the "phone parking" rule well in advance of the party date. Simply, write a note communicating your reasoning for confiscating the phones (i.e. it's really easy for the phones to be used to spread gossip or inappropriate personal information) and assure them their child can still contact them if he or she so wishes.

Filed Under: Mobile Usage

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