Is it time to have ‘The Talk’ with your child? Are you anxious about discussing the topic? Is it the right time to mention the birds and the bees? If you feel the pressure to talk to your children about sex and puberty, then you are among many parents who believe their children are not age appropriate for the ‘Facts of Life’.

AVG Technologies, who carried out the research, revealed that by the age of ten years old, most children today will have already had their first ‘facts of life’ talk with their parents.

This is up to five years earlier than their parents’ generation, the majority of whom could not remember having had the conversation until the age of 15 – if at all.

The internet is to blame for the main driving force behind the advance in this conversation. Parents concerns over the time spent on devices, revealing that 42% of children spend a significant time browsing the web, fear that it is easy for them to access inappropriate content online.

The most popular methods parents said they were currently using to avoid children reading/seeing inappropriate content, included: 53% forbidding their child from visiting unknown websites without asking permission; talking to strangers or buying items online with 51%; and a further 44% only allowing their child online for a set amount of time. 

Despite more than 81% of parents implementing one or more restrictions, only 35% of the children asked alongside their parents thought that the Internet could be dangerous. The majority of parents also said that by the age of 12, they felt their child would know more than them about the Internet and 19% said that this had or would have already happened by the age of nine.

To help address such concerns, and tackle a similarly difficult discussion topic, in an easy and comfortable manner, AVG has created a series of interactive ‘click-or-tell’ digital books, called Magda and Mo. Developed with global Internet safety charity, Childnet International, the introductory book, The Pirate’s Donut, is a fun story for young readers and their parents to read together as they guide the title characters to decide between going online themselves or asking a grown-up for help.

With AVG’s research indicating confusion over how best to tackle the online safety of their children, the Magda and Mo series features clear, simple suggestions for parents of some of the most effective steps they can take.

Judith Bitterli, Chief Marketing Officer, AVG Technologies said: “This illustrates the need to start the process of learning the dos and don’ts of the Internet at a young age, and of parents and children undertaking it together as a joint activity."

Adding: “The importance of having this conversation properly and early cannot be underestimated as connected device usage is increasing. The Magda & Mo books are part of AVG’s wider aim to support families by providing useful tools that can help develop a child’s understanding of how to make right choices online, as well as giving parents some practical guidance on the subject.”


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