Contract for Teen Laptop Use

Create a laptop contract with your teen that outlines your expectations.
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For most families, the days of having a family computer in the living room are gone. Instead, most teens have their laptop or tablet.

Portable electronic devices make it more difficult to monitor a teen's online activity. It's harder to look over your teen's shoulder, and you most likely aren't using your teen's laptop regularly.

That means it may be harder to ensure your teen is protected from online dangers, such as internet predators and scams.

 

So it's more important than ever to talk to your teen about safety issues and potential dangers associated with social media and other online websites. 

Establishing clear rules and making your expectations known ahead of time can be the best way to prevent any problems before they start. Make sure your teen knows the consequences for breaking laptop rules as well. 

One of the best ways to make sure your teen understands your rules is by creating a written behavior contract. Print it out and have your teen sign it. Hang it up and refer back to your laptop contract as needed.

Here's a sample laptop contract you can use with your teen:

Parents and Teens Contract: Laptop Use

I know having a laptop is a privilege. I respect that my parents love me and want to keep me safe. My parents respect that I am becoming a young adult and want the privilege of having the use of the laptop. With that in mind, we agree:

  1. I will only access websites that my parents would approve of me accessing.
  2. I will be on the laptop no later than _________ on school nights and _________ on weekends.
  3. I will only use the laptop for _____ hours per weekday. And ____ per weekend day.
  4. I will not sleep with a laptop in my room. This is where I will keep it overnight ____________.
  1. My responsibilities come first. I will not use social media or surf the web for fun until my responsibilities are completed for the day. Define responsibilities below.
  2. I will not use my webcam unless my parents are aware of who I am using it with.
  3. I will share passwords with my parents so they can see what information I've been accessing. I understand my parents may periodically check my laptop activity.
  4. I will treat others with kindness and respect on social media. I understand it's never OK to share sexual content. I also understand I should never say things on social media that I wouldn't say to people in-person.
  5. I will report any problems to my parents. Problems include being bullied or harassed online. I will also tell my parents if someone tries to scam me or if someone makes inappropriate comments to me.
  6. I understand the importance of maintaining a healthy online reputation. I will take steps to make sure I protect my reputation at all times. If I have concerns or encounter problems, I will talk to my parents. 

    Consequences for Breaking the Contract

    Outline the negative consequences your teen will experience for a breech of contract. Consequences may include loss of privileges, such as removal of laptop privileges for a specified period of time.

    Your teen may also lose the privilege to bring his laptop into his bedroom. Or, depending on the offense, you may need to restrict other privileges as well, such as time with friends.

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