I was born too early to participate in blogging as a child. The public use of the internet was only just picking up steam. Casual blogging was barely getting popular by the time I reached high school. I know I would have thought it was really interesting and cool to have a blog about something I was crazy about. However, I also know it would have gone nowhere if I did not have some help.
Blogging can be a fundamental learning experience. In the right context, it can help tech things like research and forming a cohesive claim. And since the idea is to write about something you are interested in, it is naturally more appealing than homework. However, just like with schooling, kids need guidance to get the most out of blogs. With your help, they can likely start building routines that will help them out for the rest of their lives.
To learn more about how to start a blog for kids, consult the table of contents below.
Table of Contents
What is a Blog for Kids?
You likely already know what a blog is. It is a log of consistent posts that are centered around a similar theme or topic. Typically, each post can be anywhere from about 500 words to more than 2,000 and is posted on a schedule. They can be about anything, so there are countless examples on the internet. So it makes sense to think about how you might make a blog for kids.
The idea of a blog for kids can be interpreted a couple of different ways. For the purposes of this article, we are focusing on blogs that a child can post to. There are not any specific rules that dictate what kind of blog a child can post to. It is fairly subjective. In general, there are a few aspects to keep in mind about whether or not a blog you made is suitable for a child.
Topic and subject matter
Depending on the age of the kid in question, there are some limitations to the content. This is not just in regards to maturity. While it is important to keep that in mind, it is not the only factor at play.
The blog will need to focus on a topic that the kid is interested in enough to write about consistently. Kids often have a few things at a time that they are all about. A blog is a great way to help them explore the details about one of those. It also teaches them about constructing thoughts and arguments about them for others to read.
Ease of use
There are many blogging sites that are set up to be really simple and easy to use. Even knowing this, it is a good idea to create this blog with WordPress. Many of these reasons will be addressed later in this article. Comparatively, WordPress has a lot more features and can be much more complicated. But you can really simplify things to your preference.
Depending on the age of the kid, you will want to make sure the editor is not overwhelming. If something is difficult to understand or navigate, it is likely the child will abandon the blog.
Kids are notoriously bad at keeping a schedule. A blog can be a great tool in building that skill. Just keep in mind you will need to be hands-on with the kid to make sure they keep up with the schedule. It may feel a little strange at first to insist the kid stops what they are doing so they can write a blog post. However, every little bit of instruction helps.
Regardless, expecting a strict schedule is a bad idea. That is a lot of pressure to put on a kid. Plus, they will no doubt fall behind. It is only natural. While the schedule needs to be there for structure, making it very rigid will likely cause the kid to lose interest.
How to Start a Blog for Kids
The goal here will be to have a blog that a child can access and post to independently. Keep an eye out for anything that can help a child get the hang of making their own posts.
First, you will need to download WordPress. WordPress is the best blogging content management system (CMS) on the internet. It has the functionality, security, and support you need for a stable blog.
Once you download it, you will make an account. You will end up with an account for you and the child. From that point, you can begin defining the website. First, you fill in the title and description of the blog. After that, you can start posting blogs, creating webpages, crafting a menu, and designing the entire site.
Themes and plugins
There are many themes and plugins that help gear the WordPress site toward children. One example to look into is Jetpack. Not only does this plugin give you access to many different functions, but it also has options for posting by email. If you want to bypass WordPress altogether, a theme like this is a great place to start. Instead of expecting the kid to log in and create a new post, you can have them email the post instead.
How to Create a Safe Blog for Kids
Having a blog is a little different from having a safe blog. Safety is likely not at the top of a child’s mind, so it is usually up to an adult to plan ahead. The good news is that WordPress can help.
You should not automatically trust a child to keep proper security protocols for the blog. To be honest, most adults fall into that category as well. Aside from teaching them to make unique passwords that they never tell anyone about, you can implement other security measures. In particular, you can turn on two-factor authentication.
When you activate two-factor authentication, the password alone is not enough to get into the editor. There will also be a code sent to a phone or email address. This can also be a great tool to make sure you always know when the kid is logging onto WordPress. If you make your own contact the second authentication, you will have to approve the login.
There are options for two-factor authentication because you will need a plugin to use it. Popular plugins, like Duo, give you multiple options for how you want to receive that alternate method of logging in
Writing and editing privileges
You might decide you are uncomfortable with your child having free rein to publish whatever they want online. There is no need to worry. Another great feature of WordPress is that you can assign appropriate privileges to each user. This includes giving the child the ability to write and edit posts without permission to publish them. This gives you the ability to review and potentially edit any outgoing posts before they go online.
Best Blog Sites for Kids
You need to have an idea of how the blog will look. You can find a lot of examples of websites run by kids. That quality is sometimes a selling point of getting people to read the blog. A simple Google search will give you plenty of blogs that are by kids for kids.
You will also need to secure hosting for the blog. Obviously, you will not want the kid to try and find a web host. You will need to find a managed WordPress host so that the details involved with hosting a site are already taken care of. A child doesn’t have the capacity for managing their hosting, and you likely have better things to attend to. This is especially true considering that WordPress managed hosting is surprisingly affordable.
You want to have the least amount of worry possible. So you will need a site that is fast with maximum uptime. It is a nightmare to explain to a child that their site is down and that you do not know why. A dependable host is absolutely necessary. And it helps if they monitor uptime along with WordPress updates and plugins.
Everyone makes mistakes, and kids are no strangers to breaking things. One of the most important things to look for is a host that provides automated backups daily. You cannot afford to lose even a week of posts if you can help it. You need that safety net as close to you as possible.
When it comes to hosting, WP Super Host has the features, performance, and price that you are looking for. We have all of the features listed above and offer different packages to better fit your specific needs. Before you decide on where to host a blog for a child, look at our features and packages today.
There are many things I still struggle with today. I am talking about things like adhering to a schedule and overall time management. I have taken great strides over the years to overcome these hurdles. Unfortunately, I know that something like blogging from an early could have helped me build those skills early.
We are all a product of our upbringing. It is clear to see how inspiring and helping a child blog can help them develop. You are encouraging them to engage with a topic they are passionate about. Not only that, you are helping them learn how to make new, healthy habits. And it all starts with learning how to start a blog for kids.