Posting Photos without permission can be problematic. Help your tween become safe, responsible, and eventually independent online. Teach them how to get Permission Before Posting with our three easy steps! 

How do you teach your child to Get Permission Before Posting?

Teaching your child to get permission before posting photos is as easy as:

  • Communicate
  • Model
  • Check-in 

Communicate

Engage your child in a conversation about what getting permission before posting or sharing a photo means.  

An understanding of permission requires the ability to think abstractly. Luckily, tweens are developing this capacity! Talking with your child about getting permission before posting also taps into their developing ability to see things from the perspective of another. 

These developing strengths make tweens uniquely primed to contribute to this important discussion. Is it permission if a person says “It’s up to you” or “I don’t care either way”?  Does permission need to be in writing? How do you ask someone for permission to post or share a photo? Together you can come up with an understanding of permission and ways to go about asking for it.

Model

It is always better to show rather than to tell!  This is called modeling.  You can model getting permission before posting by: 

  1. Asking permission before you post or share a photo of anyone, including your child.

NOTE:  This only works if you respect your child’s decision.  No guilting, no cajoling, no going behind their back.  As hard as it may be to not send that adorable photo to grandma, if your tween says they don’t want it shared, don’t share it!

  1. Making it a habit to ask someone who takes your photo if they plan to share it and letting them know if that is ok with you or not.  

Check-In

When we check-in with our kids throughout the learning process, we are keeping the lines of communication open and letting them know that they are not expected to figure it out on their own.  Checking-in might look different depending on where your child is developmentally and in the TDSU learning process.  

For tweens who are just beginning to experience the changes of adolescence, you may want to create a check-in system. This could be as simple as setting the expectation that your child will come to you when there is a photo they want to post or share.  You and your child can decide if the photo is appropriate.  If you agree that it is, your child needs to get permission before posting.  They may want to practice doing this with you, they may want you to take the lead, or they may want to handle it on their own.  

Once your child has made progress learning what photos are appropriate and how to ask for permission, it might be time for you to take a step back to let them practice independently.  Let your child know that you and the Trusted Team will check-in occasionally to see how it is going.  That might mean saying something like, “Hey, I saw that cute picture of your friend.  Did you ask if it was ok to post it?” 

Be prepared that your child might say, “I forgot,” or “ No, I knew they’d be ok with it.”  Keep in mind mistakes are part of the learning process!  The goal is to create a supportive atmosphere so that your child is comfortable telling you the truth and working with you to do better next time.  If you find that it keeps happening over and over again, then you may want to go back to the more supervised check-in system.

Don’t just follow your kids on social media.  Lead them.