Educating Girls

12 November 2019

Digital Wellbeing - A Conversation

Digital Wellbeing - A Conversation

At Ruyton we value highly the relationship with parents, as partners in the education and wellbeing of our girls. The Powerful Parenting Forum series is one of the ways we engage with our parent community equipping them with skills, sharing best practice resources and providing parenting support.

In a recent Forum: Digital Wellbeing – A Conversation, Parents and students participated in an honest and thoughtful workshop that focused on how to best navigate the online world from a student’s perspective.

Led by a group of Ruyton Year 10 students with guidance from cybersafety expert, Robyn Treyvaud the meaningful discussions assisted all present to derive insights and learning from the experience. Our Year 10 leaders of the workshop confidently facilitated discussions with parents from our Junior and Senior Schools. A valuable exchange of perspectives from the multi-generational group ensued.  Below is an extract of the insightful dialogue of the workshop.


What our Year 10 girls would tell their 12-year old self:

‘I had to receive mum’s approval before I could post a photo and she also had my password, so we had built up trust together’.

‘It’s about building trust with my parents. It’s you and your actions that you need to take responsibility for’.

‘While parents trust their child, so the child needs to trust their parents; it is a two-way deal’.


Robyn asked: ‘What are some of the digital habits of parents that could be sending bad messages?'.

Student: ‘When parents are on their phones during family time, they might write it off as work, but if a parent can’t put their phone down during family time, it is hypocritical to ask their children to do so. It can become a negative experience for young people because you can be communicating that work is more important than spending time with your children’.

Parent: ‘I’m guilty! But we need to set the precedent. We are trying to put our phones away out of access, so that dinner time is device free. It is a physical addiction and extracting from it is very challenging – it’s like a dependency and we want to limit usage and it is such a struggle’.

Student: ‘Yes, I am addicted to my phone and it does affect my mood, but don’t tell my parents! The main point is to focus on the fact that phone addiction affects adults just as much as children. I notice the same behaviours in my parents around the phone. I would suggest that every time you place a restriction on your children you need to place the same on yourself, as children have a strong sense of fairness’.


Robyn’s reflection:

How do we as parents connect with our childrens’ journey, so that we can understand their life and reason for needing to connect? We need to create a flexible framework that enables parents to understand why their children want to be connected and journey with them as they learn how to use social media responsibly.


Parent comment:

‘I admire these Year 10 Student Leaders; they respect their parents' rules, which creates trust, and they are so sensible and mature, which gives me hope for my own children’.

Digitalwellbeing aconverstation



Powerful Parenting Team

Ruyton Girls' School
November 2019