YouTube has a wealth of amazing content and, let’s be honest, kids love watching stuff. So, it would be no surprise if your child started to beg to watch YouTube. However, as you are likely aware, as great as much of the content is on the platform, some of it shouldn’t be seen by children. This is why it is ever so important that you keep tabs on what your child does.
On this page, we’re going to walk you through everything that you need to do to ensure that your child is kept safe on the platform.
Setting up YouTube Safety Features
YouTube has several features in place that will help to ensure that your child is kept safe when on the platform. We’ll walk you through how some of these features work (some of them work automatically) over the next few sections.
YouTube safety features to protect children include:
- Restricted mode: this should filter out most adult-related content in the searches.
- Comments are automatically turned off for all children-focused videos.
- You can block and report channels on YouTube if you feel they are being shown to children despite them not being suitable.
Enabling Restricted Mode
The main ‘protection’ that you have for your child is restricted mode. This used to be known as ‘safe search’. It will filter out all adult-orientated content from the searches. Well, it should do. It is not infallible. Some content does still creep through the cracks. We’ll tell you how to deal with that shortly. For now, let’s turn on Restricted Mode:
- Open up the YouTube app or website and select your account.
- Look for the ‘Restricted Mode’ button. Set this to ‘On’.
- Repeat the process for all devices your child will be accessing YouTube from.
You can ‘lock’ the mode here, ensuring that your child doesn’t turn it on and off without your permission.
Filtering Inappropriate Content
If you have turned the ‘Restricted Mode’ on, then most inappropriate content should be filtered out. If content is being shown to children when it shouldn’t be, then make sure that you report it to YouTube. We’ll tell you how to do that later!
Monitoring Watch History
We suggest that you regularly go through your child’s watch history. This way, you can check the type of content they are being exposed to. If anything needs to be reported, then do so. If you see something ‘bad’, then make sure that you talk to your child about it.
Blocking and Reporting Features
Seen a video that a child shouldn’t be looking at? Make sure that you report it! Below each video, there’ll be a REPORT button. Hit it. Let YouTube know it should be hidden. They are very good at doing that.
You can also block content creators from their profile page (click the profile name on their YouTube video). This will block it for the YouTube account. It may still appear on other accounts.
Educational Content Recommendations
Looking for some good educational content for your children? We suggest watching these channels:
- National Geographic Kids
- Bright Side – for easily digestible facts and fascinating puzzles.
- PBS Kids
- 6 Minute Physics
- Khan Academy Kids
- Sesame Street
- Sick Science
Parental Tips for YouTube Safety
As mentioned, we suggest that you always monitor what your child is doing on YouTube. It may make things a little bit easier for you if you limit them to using YouTube for certain times of the day i.e. an hour or two at most.
We also recommend that you download the YouTube Kid’s app. You can find it on the app store (or you can set up a YouTube Kid’s account if they are on your computer). This will automatically filter the content to ensure that the only content your child sees is child-related.
Finally, encourage your child not to comment on anything on YouTube. This can lead to them receiving rather unsavory messages.
YouTube is an incredibly fun website for a child to use but also has the potential to be dangerous when not used properly. Thankfully, YouTube provides a variety of tools to help protect your child. This includes a dedicated YouTube Kid’s app, as well as content filtering tools. Make sure that you use them.