Tips for Parents to Hold Kids Accountable

The Accountability Report is a great tool for parents who want to teach their kids about Internet safety and responsibility. Here’s how to get started.

1. Explain Why Your Family Uses Covenant Eyes.

Ultimately, as parents, we hope Internet safety software is not just a tactic we use to keep our kids in line while they are under our roof. We want them to buy into the need for Internet protection for themselves. We want them to become their own watchdogs online.

Explain to your kids what accountability really is, the problem with online secrecy, and what you expect of them when they use the Internet.

2. Be Consistent Talking to Your Kids About Their Reports.

As with all accountability relationships, your kids need to know that you are looking at their Reports regularly. Look at them weekly, and set a time to sit down and talk with them about their online habits.

  1. Interpret the Report. Were there any Incidents, when your kid looked at explicit material? What other websites did they look at? What did they try to look at, but was blocked?
  2. Investigate their activity. In the Detailed Browsing Logs, isolate the web addresses with titles to find out specific sites your child may have visited. Take note of any domains that come up frequently (good or bad), any specific pages they visited, or any pages that seem questionable. Visit those websites if you have any questions.
  3. Initiate a conversation.Remember, tone is (almost) everything. The more common and natural these kinds of conversations are about Internet use in your home, the more natural they will seem in instances where more serious discussion is needed.

You can find age-based discussion guides in our free ebook, Parenting the Internet Generation.

3. Look at What Your Kids Are Looking At

Watch the YouTube videos your children watch, and consider printing the lyrics for music videos. Friend your kids on Facebook, and actively read their status updates. These will help you have specific conversations (not yelling matches) about wise Internet use…and also help you understand their interests.

4. Set the Example

If you want your children to live a lifestyle of accountability, you need to model it for them. Let your kids know that somebody is holding you accountable, and consider showing them your own Accountability Report on occasion.

5. Teach Your Kids About Internet Temptations