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How to create a safer learning environment on iOS

It was announced this week that the Dáil has a bill in motion to ban the sale of internet-enabled devices to any one under the age of 13 years old. Safety online is a huge concern as the world moves more and more in to the Internet of Things and internet-enabled devices and household objects become common-place.

There are a few really easy, free steps you can to ensure your child is safer online. 

school children dressing up and using iPad to record event

Enable Restrictions

Every internet-enabled iOS device ( iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch ) comes with a built in feature called ‘Restrictions’, but you’d be surprised how many people have no idea it exists. Restrictions is incredibly easy to set up and allows an parent to control what type of access a child has to advice. This includes specific Apps, their usage as well as internet content. 

To enable Restrictions:

  1. From the homepage of your iOS device, got to ‘Settings’, choose ‘General’ and then scroll down to ‘Restrictions’
  2. When you click in to Restrictions, you will be prompted to set a 4-digit password. This is separate from the passcode used to unlock your phone. By setting this password, you are securing the settings you will next activate within the Restrictions panel, which cannot be changed again until this password is re-entered. It is therefore very important you remember it but do not share it with your child. This password will also reset any time you disable restrictions.
  3. Once you’ve chosen your password, you will see a long list of options ranging from specific apps, options about in-app purchasing and iTunes, types of allowed content, privacy settings, and change allowances. With these settings you can completely lock down the type of access you allow your child.
  4. For example, if you are worried about their access to the internet, you can disable ‘Safari’, which will then disappear altogether from your homepage. If you’d like them to have access to certain websites only, scroll down to ‘Websites’, choose ‘Specific Websites Only’ and type in the sites you’d prefer they browse.
  5. You can also disable any apps that have a guidance rating about 4+, 9+, 12+ etc. ensuring the content they are viewing is suitable. 
  6. When finished, go back to Restrictions in your settings, put in your password and select 'Disable Restrictions'.

Guided Access

You can also use ‘Guided Access’ to further lock-down usage.

  1. From the homepage of your iOS device, got to ‘Settings’, choose ‘General’ and then scroll down to ‘Accessibilty’, scroll down to ‘Guided Access’.
  2. Guided Access keeps your iPhone or iPad in a single App, and allows you to control what features can be used in that specific App. You  can even disable part of the screen if you’d prefer your child not to interact with those features. 
  3. Once set up, to activate Guided Access triple click the Home button, enter the passcode you set up. 
  4. To deactivate triple click the home button again, and re-enter your password. 

For more on Guided Access and our other Learning videos, click here

iPad and iOS are amazing platform for learning, with more and more schools introducing them as interactive teaching tools, allowing children to engage with information in new and exciting ways. Restrictions and Guided access ensures that this learning can be undertaken in a safe environment. 

If you’d like to learn more why not get in touch?