The issue of tracking your children’s movements and activities remotely is a thorny issue. Parenting pundits argue that your relationship with your children should be built on trust and once they have that, they will not want to breach it by engaging in activities that you would not approve of. Others will argue that the word trust and teenagers do not go together in the same sentence and they need to be monitored to keep them on the straight and narrow path or at least until they are eighteen years old.
If you fall within the latter category, here are some ways to keep a vigilant eye on your teen without them knowing. These tactics will also help avoid the sulking, pouting and tantrum throwing antics that your teenager may resort to once they realize you have been spying on them. If your child is like most teens, their phones are the center of their universe. You can find pretty much all you need to know about what they are up to from these devices. Here are some ways:
- Use of location apps
You can download applications to check in on your teen at any time of day. This way, you are sure that they are where they say they are. Absconding class, sneaking out of the home and lying about their whereabouts will be a thing of the past. If your child is grounded or has restrictions with regard to their movement, you can set the app to update you once they arrive at school or at home or any other location. This is also a great way to find your child if they are abducted or lost.
- Use of message trackers
This app may be a little extreme but lies in the background of your child’s phone tracking all the incoming and sent messages. Some of these apps also give you access to the photos and videos that are on the phone and can give you a pretty good idea as to your child’s personality or behavior.
- Use of access control apps
These apps allow you to remotely control what phone functionalities your child has during specific times. For example, you may disable the text feature for the duration they are in class so that they can concentrate more. The downside of these apps is that your child will probably know you are behind their sudden lack of access to the same services.
One thing that these apps do not teach you is how to deal with any unsavory data that you find in your child’s phone. How will you explain the source of that information? You may take the high road and claim your parental right to be all up in their business but you risk alienating your child much like you would if you used more blatant methods of keeping an eye on them. Also, find ways to broach the subject without your child knowing how you got wind of the information in the first place.
Pete Newman shares tips on effective parenting through his blogs. He encourages parents to keep a watch on their children’s online activities, for this he promotes the use of computer security software. He recommends webwatcher software is one of the best in the market today.