Following on from recent controversy regarding disturbing videos found by kids on the YouTube Kids app, YouTube have rolled out new parental controls that give parents more control over what their kids watch. 

Options for parents now include:

  • Channels curated by YouTube and "trusted partners" like Disney.
  • The ability for parents to handpick every video and channel a child can access.
  • A mechanism that, when a parent turns off the app's search function, limits clips to those verified by the YouTube Kids team.


How To Set Up Youtube Kids Parental Controls

YouTube have created a useful information kit HERE

You will need to open YouTube Kids on one of your devices (tablet, smart phone etc).

1 – SET UP PROFILES FOR EACH OF YOU CHILDREN. This can be done using these instructions from YouTube HERE

2 – SET UP THE PARENTAL CONTROLS FOR EACH THE PROFILES. Info from YouTube HERE or follow from the basic instructions below.

  • Click the lock icon at the bottom of any page
  • Enter the numbers as written
  • Click ‘settings’
  • Click your child’s profile and enter your google password
  • You can set your settings for all your children’s profiles from this screen. Choose a child’s profile and set your preference for each:
    • Allow Searching – by turning off search you can restrict viewing to a more limited set of videos. This is important for school aged children who can read & type independently.
    • Approved Content Only – limit watching to your choice of channel collections by selected partners or the YouTube Kids team.
      • After you toggle this ON – you will be prompted to select from the provided list the collections of videos that you would like to make available for your child.
      • Toggling this ON turns the above ‘allow search’ option to turn off.
    • Clear History.
    • Pause Watch History. This stops the app from using what you have watched or searched for in the past to recommend new videos.
  • Tap the back arrow to save your settings and exit
    • You can edit the list of collections you’ve approved anytime by tapping Manage under the “Approved content only” setting.


Other useful settings

SET A TIMER - the built-in timer lets you limit screen time by telling kids when it’s time to stop watching. The timer will display a friendly alert and stop the app when the session is over, so you don’t have to.

Here’s how to set the timer:

  • Tap the lock icon in the bottom corner of any page in the app.
  • Read and enter the numbers that appear or enter your custom passcode.
  • Select Timer.
  • Use the slider bar or the icons to set a time limit.
  • Tap Start Timer.

Kids will see a "Time's up!" notification and the app will be locked once the time limit is reached.

To unlock the screen:

  • Tap the lock icon in the bottom corner of any page in the app.
  • Read and enter the numbers that appear or enter your custom passcode.
  • Select Timer, then tap End Timer.


SET A CUSTOM PASSCODE - This is a useful setting if you children can read and follow the prompt to enter the written numbers. Instructions can be found HERE