Today’s technology-centric world is enough to make a parent a basket-case. Bug just turned 7 and he knows less about the workings of the internet than most kids his age – thank goodness! It’s one of the benefits of homeschooling , that I don’t have to worry about what’s he’s learning from the kids at school – and wanting what they have. It works for material possessions and “online presence” also. I know of kids that aren’t much older than him that have email, Instagram and YouTube accounts. That’s not happening in our house. It’s nice to know that he has no idea what Instagram is so he doesn’t feel like he has to have one. And to him, YouTube is just for listening to music and watching videos for school – all Mommy-approved and in her presence.
But I know at some point he has to learn a little bit. That the internet is for more than just games, that you can communicate with people other than just by telephone and how to responsibly use technology. But how can you possibly do that with all the dangers lurking out there and all the junk on the internet? There is no way I would give Bug a Gmail or Yahoo email address – I KNOW what kind of junk slips through their filters. So how do you find email that is safe for kids?
Well the answer is, KidsEmail.org – the are providing a safe, secure option for email for kids. We’ve been having so much fun with Bug’s KidsEmail.org account! Right now, me, Hubs and our parents have his email address. I love getting messages like this:
We still have a lot of work with punctuation and capitalization to do but I expect his writing skills to improve with time. He enjoys “writing” letters by email much more than actually having to write things with pencil and paper. So I see lots of language arts lessons in the future involving composing and email to someone with correct grammar, punctuation and capitalization!
So what is so great about KidsEmail.org?
Well, first, I have a parent login where I can manage multiple accounts if I had multiple children. (There are even options for teen accounts!)
Inside the parent login I can:
- add address to my child’s contact list
- set time restrictions
- block senders
- “ground” my child from email – meaning turn off access to their account until a certain time
- edit safety settings
- view their activity log
- and more!
Some of my favorite features are:
- Having all messages sent to me first with the option to allow or block. If I don’t want it in Bug’s inbox, it will never get there! There is also the option to automatically allow emails from contacts (which I’ve done since only parents and grandparents are in his contact list) but I can also still have a copy sent to me. (Which is helpful so I know he has a message to check!)
- Being able to have images, links and attachments removed from incoming mail.
- That his Inbox page is free from ads and clutter. I mean, look at this:
I could only show you half the screen to protect the email addresses of family members. But you can see, his Inbox is literally a box in the middle of the screen and the sides, top and bottom are blank white space. (The background images are customizable too with different options – he picked the puppy theme.)
There are more safety features that I know will be beneficial as he gets older. But right now he can send and receive emails from family and he’s loving it! (And the grandparents are getting a kick out of it too!!)
You can try KidsEmail.org today for FREE so you have no reason not to try it! You get 30 days free. After that, it’s $38.95 for 13 months! (Or you can opt to pay $4.95/month – but the one fee up front is a WAY better deal!)
This post was written on behalf of KidsEmail.org based on my experience using the service. All opinion are my own.