SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS) – A new study shows that more than 90 percent of third-graders are already online, and 20 percent have their own cell phones. By middle school, over 90 percent have phones, which they use to go online and to text.

The study conducted in Massachusetts shows just how important it is for parents to educate their children about cell phone usage and cyber-bullying at an early age.

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Between third and fifth grade, as many as 40 percent of the children reported being bullied, but 14 to 19 percent report being victims of cyber-bullying.

KCBS’ Larry Magid Comments:

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It’s not just about kids going online when they get home either. The bigger culprit is phones.

Parents who think that their kids are safe because they don’t own a phone may be naive, because kids often pass the phones around at school.

There really isn’t too early an age to start talking about online behavior, or just good behavior in general. It’s important that kids know to treat others as they would want to be treated.

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