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Should Kids Blog?

This guest post is by Onibalusi Bamidele of YoungPrePro.com.

Do you know that over 6 million underage children write blogs with or without their parents’ consent? As a 17 year old blogger, I’ll be giving you my opinion on “kid blogging” here, and I hope by the time you finish reading, you’ll be able to make the decision about whether you should allow your kid to blog or not.

Why you should allow your kids to blog

Allowing your kids to blog might be a great decision. In case you’re not yet sure, below are some of the main reasons why you should allow your kids to blog.

Blogging helps improve written language skills

I have been blogging for almost two years now, and within that period of time I have written hundreds of articles. I have also met countless young bloggers, and those who have been following me from the beginning of my blogging career tell me that my written English has improved significantly.

This is also the case for Gloson from GlosonBlog.com. Take a look at his blog and tell me if you believe the blog is owned and maintained by a 13-year old Malaysian kid.

Education is important, and so is going to school, but what many people won’t admit is that being the best at something is more about practicing it than learning it. Blogging has evolved in a way that makes the blogger more interested in blogging—especially if the blogger is a kid. By writing on the same subject regularly, young people can improve their writing significantly.

Blogging boosts communication skills

Another great reason why you need to encourage your kid to start blogging is because it helps them learn how to communicate effectively. I’d like to use myself as an example. When I started blogging, I’d send emails to other bloggers, but I hardly ever got a response—I simply wasn’t good at communicating with others. But as time went on, I started reading other blogs, reading others’ comments, and replying myself, and so my communication started to improve. I now get a reply for almost every email I send.

It’s also important to know that there are different cultures in the world, and the modes of communication in every culture are different. By blogging, your kid would be able to get feedback, comments, and emails from people from every walk of life—and it is only a matter of time before he or she learns how to communicate effectively.

Blogging teaches us how to deal with critics

It really doesn’t matter what your age or skill is, there will always be people who don’t want you to progress. A lot of kids are brought so that they are not corrected by outsiders, so when they start to grow up and receive any comment from an outsider about their performance, they think they’re doing something wrong. If they are not used to being criticized they won’t know how to face even constructive criticism. They may be discouraged, and that can end up affecting their performance and self-esteem.

But when they blog and are criticized, they’ll do their research and see it’s a common thing in the blogosphere for commenters to disagree or point out areas where a post could be stronger. As time goes on, they’ll learn to accept criticism and see it as a part of life—especially for someone who wants to become successful.

It can help generate pocket money

Through blogging, your son or daughter could generate a little pocket money, and come to know what it means to “make” money. Retireat21.com recently released a list of 30 top young bloggers making money online. Most of these bloggers are under 21; there are several bloggers under the age of 17 on that same list.

Take a look at Sushant Risodkar who just turned 18 and is making thousands of dollars every single month from affiliate marketing. Benjamin Lang is only 17, but has built one of the most successful young entrepreneur blogs online. Take a look at Devesh Sharma, who also is 17, and has guest authors flock to his blog. I’m only 17, and I make an average of $3,000 online every month.

When kids make money from their efforts, it really means a lot. First, it means they are learning what it takes to become independent of their parents. Second, they are learning that making money takes time, and requires hard work—thus encouraging them to spend their money wisely.

These young kids further prove that you don’t have to have formal qualifications and a steady job (especially important, considering the high global unemployment rates) to succeed in life. Young bloggers also understand the importance of being self-employed. This is good, because it means they would never have to be in debt to further their education, and they wouldn’t have to look for job when they graduated—unless they wanted to.

Blogging is great…

…but it isn’t only for adults.

There is a lot that kids can gain from being bloggers, and it would be even more awesome if their parents could be there to guide and encourage them as they do so. This will prevent them from going the wrong way, and ensure they have someone to hold them accountable for their actions online.

Would you let your kids blog? Let us know in the comments.

Onibalusi Bamidele is a 17 year old kid blogger and the founder of YoungPrePro.com. Download his ebook titled “From 0 to 3k Monthly” to learn how he averages $3,000 online every month.

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Comments

  1. I am for it as long as the parent take responsibility and monitor the usage like they should do anyway.

    • Akos says:

      Well, I have to agree with you. I’m 13 and I know that there are loads of laws and rules to obey online as well. But without these the internet and also blogging would be boring.

  2. John McLear says:

    A huge feed of Primary School kids and classes that blog:
    http://mclear.co.uk/2009/10/17/one-aggregated-rss-feed-of-all-the-primary-school-blogs/

    Provided by PrimaryBlogger

    If you ever want evidence of successful uses of blogging you should check out what the kids are writing in those feeds, the outcomes are amazing!

  3. Andrew Stark says:

    Hi

    My step-daughter is 14 and despite buying hername.com she still hasn’t taken it.

    I think that if I was to tell her to write about fashion / other things that she is into and teach her about the affiliate side of things she would be much more interested. the key thing is that kids attract other kids, this will be loads of traffic, and as traffic is money then it’s hardly surprising you’re all doing so well.

    Get them blogging about their passion and it will be much cheaper than paying for them to go through university and get into middle class poverty.

    More power to the young

    Andrew

  4. Monja Wessel says:

    I do Not See any reason Why Kids shouldn’t blog – As you said it improves some Important skills. Also, all this is a Great Learning Experience and fantastic Way to prepare for Life

  5. Jan Udlock says:

    Excellent post and impressive too. Onibalusi, I loved all of your points and I can tell you’ve had to live through them, too. As a parent of younger children (and older ones) who need to find a fun way to work on their written skills, I suggest to parents that the younger kids can have a private blog. My daughter only gives permission to siblings, parents and grandparents to view her blog. That way she’s writing, learning tech and having fun all at the same time.

    Congrats on being ProBlogger.

  6. I help my daughter (age 5) record her life events on her blog, http://www.lilhound.wordpress.com. She came up with the idea to have a blog and narrates all the posts for me to type. She takes most of her own pictures and sometimes records videos.

    Giving her a place to write has opened the door for me to talk about how to tell stories, tips on communicating, and internet safety.

  7. Ben Lang says:

    Amazing job Oni! Thanks so much for sharing my blog :)

  8. My stepson wanted to start a blog and I was all for it, but given his track record with commitment, I didn’t feel comfortable helping him set it up. He still doesn’t understand the downside of putting his information on the internet and is a little to free with sharing personal stuff.

    I’m wondering when teachers will introduce students to blogging – it seems to be so common place that I wouldn’t be surprised to see this happening soon.

  9. Ayodeji says:

    As concerning would I let my kids blog? Yes, I will! And Oni, you’ve inspired me here a lot. I also visited Gloson’s blog and, wow, it’s superb.
    I’ll say guys keep the good job going.

    Ayodeji

  10. Carla says:

    My daughter has been blogging since she was 9. However, I keep an eye on both what she is writing as well as the comments coming in.

    She and her sister (who are now 11 and 9) write on whatever they feel like. I agree that it is a good way to boost writing skills. So far their top post has been on the Icecycle game and their Littlest Pet Shop Youtube video. :)

  11. Prof KRG says:

    I also don’t see any reason that children shouldn’t blog. That being said (written), I do think it’s important for parents to have some oversight of the blog.

    Children have a tendency to be too trusting. If either of my children (8 and 10) were to start a blog, I would want to subscribe to the blog. I also would want to talk to them about the importance of not giving away personal information that might put them in danger. Finally, I think it would be important to discuss with them how what they place online will be with them forever and they should be careful about what they write on their blog.

    I asked my 10-year-old daughter to do some vlog or Q&A book reviews on my personal blog. She wasn’t interested at all. To be honest, it was a bit disappointing for me because I love it so much. However, different people enjoy various activities, right?

  12. Nico says:

    It depends… I think that as a parent you also have to “guide” your blogging children. Blogging is fun and like Oni writes there are a lot of positive points. Bur not all children (depending on age/personality) are aware of the “dangers” of the internet.

    Blogging is already introduced in a lot of schools. I worked in a university college for a couple of years on an e-learning project. Blogging is great to keep a journey and it encourages collaboration. But the goals in school are different then what Oni describes. The techniques however are mainly the same I guess.

  13. Great post! Just followed the links through to YoungPrePro which has some awesome articles on it.

    In my opinion of a 16 year old teenager, I think kids shouldn’t blog until they reach a reasonable age of around 16-17 as by then they should have learnt what information they shouldn’t be putting online about themselves and what information they should be splashing around the web, things they know, relating back to what Kimberly says.

    If the young blogger is confident they know enough to own and operate a blog about a certain topic, they should go for it. Put the money up front and you never know, you may make back twice or three times as much as you put in.

    Good luck and go for it.

  14. Austin Baugh says:

    Great points. I’m only 18 and I write a blog about French horn and some other musical areas. I found that having strong content on my site meant researching a bunch more, so even though I’m younger, I still sound well versed and respectable.

    I’m also going to college next year for music performance, so I’m thinking that spending all my time studying these areas can’t do anything but help me in my classes next year. I’d probably say the same is true for anyone that starts blogging about a certain interest that they plan to pursue in college.

  15. Chris Price says:

    While I don’t have children that could blog at this point due to their age, I wouldn’t have a problem with them blogging about certain topics as long as they kept their personal information…well…personal. It is a great creative opportunity, and although I haven’t reached any massive amount of income by any stretch, a good blog can provide some pocket change (or even more) for kids.

  16. aming says:

    great post, unfortunately my daughter still 3 years old, but I’ll prepare everything for her blog.
    Thanks anyway..

  17. My oldest is 9, and we’re using blogging as a writing exercise. She writes them out by hand first, then types them in. Topic doesn’t matter to me, although she did settle on a fairy-themed blog. We’ll see how it goes, but it is also intended as a lesson in making money.

  18. Graham Lutz says:

    My kids will be on the computer for sure! They will be monitored, of course, but allowed to test, create, and try things on their own! I wish I could go back and learn more about coding, design, development, etc. when I was a kid.

    What a chore that is now that I have kids of my own and everything else!

  19. sibin says:

    Blogging is good and also give money.But it took more time to reach on Top.Most of the kid bloggers spend lot of Time with there blog.So they forgot there study.Every kid can’t be a good blogger.I have lot of experience,am not a good blogger,(my age 20).I have a blog and i always work with it,I also take my study time for blogging ,so exams result came down .I got only 7/60 my exams.So, Blogging is good ,but you should have at time table,2 Hour blogging ,3 Hour studying etc…Blogging is not your Target,it’s a side business .So study well ,When you get Free time ,continue your blogging.Never take your study time for blogging…

  20. These is a very informative article for all the parents to allow their kids to blog and make them improve writing and vocabulary skills.Nice to see names of the young bloggers they can be used as a role model for kids.Nice article will check out your blog for more…..Thanks

  21. ronanvance says:

    I set blogs up for two of my older kids. They love it as a form of expression and a forum to share their creative pursuits. My 8yo son likes to make short films and is experimenting with stop action. He does not write much, but I think that will follow as he explains and discusses the videos he posts. My 10yo daughter keeps lists, writes poems, scans her artwork, and shares photos she takes with her new camera. She loves her personal space. I have them on password-protected sites so that they can only share their posts with friends and family, and I am set up as a contributor so I can see anything and everything they do. We can always change this option in the future, but this provides a measure of security that makes me comfortable with them posting their lives online. I hope that this keeps them off Facebook for a little longer, but when they do finally enter more public online networks, I believe that what they are learning through this experience of building and managing their own blogs will prepare them to be better community members and value contributors.

  22. Right now i don’t have any children but i surely advice my first kid to blog on the niche she/he likes. btw i’m a 20 year old kiddo who is improving his blog by following your path. Thanks for being an inspiration to me always.

    -Irfan

  23. alls says:

    now every time to cafe internet much under age to use internet. You know in my country user internet from under age children.

  24. Samantha says:

    Whilst I agree that kids should blog, I also hope that the kids who do blog don’t become addicted whereas they’re no longer socialising with their real friends i.e. playing football etc. I mean let’s face it, blogging isn’t an active thing to be doing and kids love eating junk food so I sometimes feel that kids + junk food + blogging = unhealthy unsociable life which sometimes doesn’t always work.

  25. James Greg says:

    Great article and a wonderful debate to allow kids to blog. Surely there is no reason to hold back a child from indulging in educational activities, children should be taught the value of money and if they have chosen this way to earn their pocket money then it should be encouraged as this would not only provide them a chance to earn but also to spend it wisely and buy useful products which would allow them to enhance their business.

    Rock on children and make your parents proud.

  26. Bilal Kamoon says:

    I am 17 y.o myself and definitely enjoy blogging and the benefits of it (;

    and btw, having your parents unaware of your blog is the best part!!

  27. Nhut Le says:

    Blogging helps kids develop their intelligence, communication skills, writing skills and widen their vision about the world.

  28. Alex Neuer says:

    I do agree with this article but at the end of the day not all kids are the same, everyone’s different in their own way, it all depends on the situation. It is a great thing and to their advantages but there are pros and cons in everything.

  29. Tara Husband says:

    My daughter who just turned 8 has had a tumblr blog for over a year. She writes poems and quips about being up in her tree! We keep it private for only family and publish is to our private Facebook page. I have a tumblr app to blog with and she can’t wait for hers!

  30. Deb says:

    There are a huge number of teachers, classes and students blogging. Student blogging is a passion of mine and I’m currently writing up a project about it. One of the things we suggest is that unless they have a blogging parent who can support them, they be involved in a class blog for a while to see how it works and how much work it is to maintain. And we encourage group blogging not only to make it easier to maintain, but it gives them experience in collaboration, planning and helping each other edit.

    My eldest is 5 and isn’t blogging yet, but it will be happening relatively soon. It helps that her grandparents check her videos on my blog, there is an audience waiting for her as soon as she gets started.

  31. My name is Stefan Etienne and I’m 14-years-old. I manage the technology blog LaptopMemo, which is a really great site (290,000 views for Q2 2011 so far) that has not only been covered on TV, but linked to by some of the biggest tech sites in the world. I’m even friends with most of their editors, and indeed, I make a fair share of money as well (hundreds). I think kids should be able to blog, but only if there is a truly good purpose behind it.

  32. When it comes to the issue of Kids blogging, it sound interesting to me. I will mostly support any kids around me who will like to engage in blogging. Blogging will help that kid grow faster in knowledge than you can ever imagine.

    Kids should be allow to blog. Blogging is life.

  33. Marie Noelle says:

    For teenagers, I don’t see any problems and their parents don’t even have to know,,, for younger kids, I think blogging can be great, it can help them improve their writing skills in a different context, a fun one, but I really think the parents should be involve in the process…

  34. There’s no harm in it, as long as their parents monitor them. There’s a lot of weirdos on the net.

  35. Kids shouldn’t just blog but should be encourage to explore a variety of potential internet ventures. I did an interview with U.K. kids Tom and Joe Hobbs who at age 11 started stop motion Lego video’s on YouTube and now have over 19 million views for their video productions and have made more than $30k by the time they were 13 years of age! They were even invited to learn the greatest stop motion techniques from a movie studio.

    I mean what kid wouldn’t rather earn money while building online skills starting a business blog, online venture rather than slaving over fast food kitchens for minimum wage?

    My 7 year old has already requested to start his own youtube channel (he wants to review pc games with video and audio) and he wants to start a blog. I am waiting until he is a little older (his handwriting is terrible at school, I fear if he just types he will never get good grades at writing). But I will probably help him setup his own blog at least by his 10th birthday if not sooner. I know YouTube requires 13 years old to have an account at least though same as Facebook.

    Parental monitoring and controls are essential, you have to have complete exposure to all online activities and in this case I wouldn’t let a child use a computer for such purposes unless it was in an open family room, no private working in bedroom stuff. They also need to be encouraged to balance time properly, more than 1 kid has turned into a social hermit by closing themselves behind doors and on the PC for 7 hours after coming home from school only to have a hard time with social interaction later in life. They still need to balance best of both worlds.

  36. Eddie Gear says:

    What ever you say Onibalusi, I am sure that you are a great inspiration for many young bloggers and entrepreneurs around the world.

  37. Harrison Li says:

    I guess I’m lucky enough to be able to have my auntie’s support in me blogging, my biggest concern was to have a paid domain and hosting service, my auntie allowed it and gave me an opportunity to do this I should never waste this great chance :)

  38. This was a timely post. I had been thinking of letting my 7 yr old start a blog but the free ones like blogger and wordpress require a min. age of 13. Obviously- making money would not be in mind for my 7 yr old. Our main focus would be educational and fun. I homeschool my boys and I work from home blogging.

    However, I did go visit your site and the only reason I subscribed is because I saw you share details about how you make so much money- in particular, by writing! Affiliate marketing does not work for my and my blog and its refreshing to see someone say – “I make a lot of money by writing”. $3000-$5000 a month IS a lot of money to me. My husband and I would be very happy to have that kind of income.

    Thank you for this post!

  39. Jeanne says:

    You bring up some very good point’s Onibalusi / Guest Blogger….and I completely understand that kids blogging could be a really good thing – especially because social media is on of the biggest vehicles of the future. But I have to say that the younger the blogger is, the more need for parental guidence and input. But even for “older” teens – there is still a need for some parental guidence. Here’s the thing – as teens get “older” – and I’m talking 15, 16, 17 yeras of age….that range, they tend to think that they know about life. Sure a teen can be and many are much more up to date technically than some adults – but teens simply do not know about life yet. And THAT is the component that is hard to “regulate” on sites, blogs, chat rooms, communications of any kind….is everyone you are communicating with REALLY the age they say they are? Are they WHO they say they are? There is such a large component for danger in this area that it’s scary. Teens are very smart and very capable – but they just do not have a lot of life experience yet…and thats a problem. So, my point here is teens just need to be careful, have really great and open communication with their parents about thier blog and their communications – both outgoing and incomming, and involve their parets so that the utmost safety for the teen and the family can be achieved. THEN if it works for you – terrific!! Thank you so much – you are a great writer.

  40. Andrelle says:

    I am young, probably not that young but I started my blog early, mainly because I enjoy blogging, sharing information and just find the net to be very addicting. If you have a child or nephew etc. its never too early to let them start blogging, looking at how the web has taken over in todays world and helped many, who wouldn’t want to be apart of this.

  41. Neil says:

    Kids should blog. It doesn’t only help in communication skills and handling criticisms, I think blogging can also allows the kid to have wider perspective of the world.

    And, it’s better than kids playing computer games.

  42. My 13 year old daughter blogs about her bento lunch creations, her artwork, and teen health issues at http://teenbento.wordpress.com/. I think it’s a great way for her to use and share her creative ideas. I do monitor her blog, as well as anything else she does online.

  43. Sherlogic says:

    I almost do not believe with gloson, a kid with age 11 years could make the article very interesting and innovative. I was very embarrassed and felt very low when competing with that kid. really a great boy.

  44. Add this 16 year old to your list too. Although, I am one of the many but hey I contribute equally if not more.

  45. Great article. Our 6 year old has had a photo blog for a year now as she sees me blogging and wanted to share the images she takes and her thoughts. I let her dictate when she wants to update it. She is also in charge of the design. She is proud of her work and though we have not made a dime off the ads, we did set her up with ad sense so that we could put anything she makes into her college fund. I made the decision to moderate the comments though because if anyone wants to give her a hard time, they will have to come through me first.

  46. Pranav says:

    I encourage minors and kids to write blog. It improves not only communication but also creativity. Furthermore it also provides easier and effective way to unleash their emotions that is psychologically very important for their growth. However there should be guidance and needed control. One way I found useful and now living this as mission is to encourage kids to write stories.