How to Add a Child Account to Google Family Link

Introduction

In This Guide
You'll Learn:
  • How to add a Child Account to your Google Family
Before We Begin:
  • Have your smartphone or tablet available
  • Have the Family Link app installed
Google

1 What is Family Link

Google Family Link allows a parent to monitor and filter some content a child has access to on their Android tablets, smartphones, and Chromebooks. It provides some of the same features when the child is using Google services and programs on a browser they're signed into with their Google account.

Google Family Link lets you limit and monitor your child's access to certain content on Google services when they're signed in. You can do this through an app on your smartphone, or a website on your computer.

No filtering technology is 100% perfect. The best solution is active, engaged parenting; working with your child to ensure they develop good habits through your instruction and guidance.
Google Family Link cannot monitor the entire Internet, only services and devices signed in with the child's Google account.

Hardware Devices

Google Family Link affords you the most monitoring and control over Google Account-based devices.

Android Phones and Tablets
Android LogoOn an Android tablet or phone the parent can:
  • See what apps are installed
  • Block access to apps for a time
  • Remove apps from the device
  • Require approval for new apps to be installed
  • Set a bedtime when the phone won't allow access
  • Set general screen-on time limits
  • Lock the device remotely
Even with these restrictions, your child is always still able to call you to check in or for emergencies.
Chromebooks
ChromebookOn a Chromebook the parent can:
  • See what apps are installed
  • Block access to apps for a time
  • Remove apps from the device
  • Require approval for new apps to be installed
  • Set general screen-on time limits
In general, the Google account signed into the Chromebook, the child's in this case, will be used for all Google services. You can be more sure that rules you set up for Google's Internet Services (below) will follow these rules more closely.
If the device is not signed into the child's Google account, or is signed into a guest account, Family Link has no way to monitor or restrict the device.

Internet Services

Google Family Link provides some monitoring and control over these web-based services.

YouTube
YouTubeGoogle Family link can help you manage what your child can see on YouTube. You can:
  • Completely block access to YouTube
  • Turn on Restricted Mode, filtering out much of the more adult-oriented content
  • Restrict YouTube to YouTube Kids; a special, heavily curated set of videos designed specifically for very small children, and no ability to search for other videos
  • Monitor what videos are watched
Google Search
GoogleFamily Link will let you:
  • Turn on Safe Search
  • Review what has been searched for
Google Chrome Browser
Google ChromeWhile fewer, you can control some aspects of the Chrome Browser with Family Link:
  • Review browsing history
  • Basic website blocking and filtering capabilities
If the browser is not signed into the child's Google account, or is signed into a guest account, Family Link has no way to monitor or restrict the content on the services.

Google Families

Google Family Link is one part of a much larger service; Google Families.

While this guide will focus on Family Link, a large number of other Google services, both free and for a price are available. For more information, visit families.google.com with your web browser for more information.

? Have you already setup Google Families, and the Family Link app?

  1. Yes
  2. No

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In This Guide
You'll Learn:
  • How to add a Child Account to your Google Family
Before We Begin:
  • Have your smartphone or tablet available
  • Have the Family Link app installed
Google

Google Family Link allows a parent to monitor and filter some content a child has access to on their Android tablets, smartphones, and Chromebooks. It provides some of the same features when the child is using Google services and programs on a browser they're signed into with their Google account.

Google Family Link lets you limit and monitor your child's access to certain content on Google services when they're signed in. You can do this through an app on your smartphone, or a website on your computer.

No filtering technology is 100% perfect. The best solution is active, engaged parenting; working with your child to ensure they develop good habits through your instruction and guidance.
Google Family Link cannot monitor the entire Internet, only services and devices signed in with the child's Google account.

Hardware Devices

Google Family Link affords you the most monitoring and control over Google Account-based devices.

Android Phones and Tablets
Android LogoOn an Android tablet or phone the parent can:
  • See what apps are installed
  • Block access to apps for a time
  • Remove apps from the device
  • Require approval for new apps to be installed
  • Set a bedtime when the phone won't allow access
  • Set general screen-on time limits
  • Lock the device remotely
Even with these restrictions, your child is always still able to call you to check in or for emergencies.
Chromebooks
ChromebookOn a Chromebook the parent can:
  • See what apps are installed
  • Block access to apps for a time
  • Remove apps from the device
  • Require approval for new apps to be installed
  • Set general screen-on time limits
In general, the Google account signed into the Chromebook, the child's in this case, will be used for all Google services. You can be more sure that rules you set up for Google's Internet Services (below) will follow these rules more closely.
If the device is not signed into the child's Google account, or is signed into a guest account, Family Link has no way to monitor or restrict the device.

Internet Services

Google Family Link provides some monitoring and control over these web-based services.

YouTube
YouTubeGoogle Family link can help you manage what your child can see on YouTube. You can:
  • Completely block access to YouTube
  • Turn on Restricted Mode, filtering out much of the more adult-oriented content
  • Restrict YouTube to YouTube Kids; a special, heavily curated set of videos designed specifically for very small children, and no ability to search for other videos
  • Monitor what videos are watched
Google Search
GoogleFamily Link will let you:
  • Turn on Safe Search
  • Review what has been searched for
Google Chrome Browser
Google ChromeWhile fewer, you can control some aspects of the Chrome Browser with Family Link:
  • Review browsing history
  • Basic website blocking and filtering capabilities
If the browser is not signed into the child's Google account, or is signed into a guest account, Family Link has no way to monitor or restrict the content on the services.

Google Families

Google Family Link is one part of a much larger service; Google Families.

While this guide will focus on Family Link, a large number of other Google services, both free and for a price are available. For more information, visit families.google.com with your web browser for more information.

Google Families has 3 levels of membership.

Family Manager
The Family Manager is usually the first person to setup the Google Family service, and has full control over everything that happens in the Family group.
The Family Manager is always an Adult.
Adult
Adults can manage the child accounts in the family. They can also change what services are purchased, and what levels of access each Child has.
Child
Each child account has access based on what the Adult accounts set for it.
You can have, at most, six members to your Google Family account.

In general, you will send an invite to a person, then that person accepts that invitation, then you can setup their family role.

Family Manager On Computer

  1. Open your preferred browser.
    Main Desktop Browsers.
  2. Type in families.google.com and press Enter or Return.
    Chrome browser with address typed in and highlighted.
  3. If asked, sign in with one of your Parent accounts.
    Sign-in link highlighted
    Google Sign in with Email and next button highlighted.
  4. Select Invite Family Member.
    Google Families with Invite family member highlighted.
  5. Enter the email address of the person you want to invite to your family group, and select Send.
    Invite member with email address and send button highlighted.
  6. Select Go to Family Group.
    Invite sent with Go To Family Group highlighted.

Other Family Member

  1. The person you want to add needs to check their email.
  2. In their email, there will be a message offering an invitation. Select Accept Invitation.
    Google email offering family group with Accept Invitation highlighted.
  3. They'll be directed to the Google website to sign in. Select Get Started.
    Invite website with Get Started highlighted.
  4. They'll be asked to confirm their account. Select Join Family.
    Confirm account with Join Family highlighted.
  5. You're now part of the family! You can select View Family to see other members.
    Welcome to the Family with View Family highlighted.
By default, a person added will be a full member, and considered an adult.

You can have up to 6 accounts as part of the same Family, and may add and remove them at any time.

You can always add adult accounts through the website, and child accounts through the Family Link app.

Google's Family Link can't change or monitor much, if any activity on an Apple iPhone or iPad. Instead, Apple has their own, specific Parental Controls available.

This guide will focus on Android and Chromebook devices.

Family Manager's Phone

You must use the app to add a child account of any type.
  1. Open Family Link.
    Family Link
  2. When adding the child account, you'll be asked if the child have a Google account, select Yes.
    Family account setup asking if the child has a Google account with Yes highlighted.
  3. You'll be reminded to get your child's device, and informed this process takes about ten minutes. Select Next.
    Get child's device with Next highlighted.
  4. You'll be asked to setup the Google Family Link for children & teens on your child's device, and a code is displayed.
    Download message with code displayed.
    Leave this message up on your screen. You'll need it in a few moments after setting up the app on your child's device.

Child's Phone

  1. Launch the Play Store on your smartphone.
    Google Play Store.
  2. Select the search bar at the top.
    Google Play Store with Search highlighted.
  3. Type in "Google Family Link for Children", then select Google Family Link for children & teens from the list.
    Play Store search with search and app highlighted.
  4. Select Install.
    Family Link App Store page with Install highlighted.
  5. Select Open to open the app.
    Family Link App Store page with Open highlighted.
  6. You'll be asked which device you want to supervise. Select This device.
    Family Link welcome with This device highlighted.
  7. You'll be asked which account you want to supervise, select your child's account.
    Account to supervise with account highlighted.
  8. Enter the nine-character code from your Parent's device.
    Code Entry screen with code entry highlighted.
  9. You'll be asked to verify your account. Enter your child's password then select Next.
    Verify child account with password and Next button highlighted.

Family Manager's Phone

  1. On the adult's phone, you'll be asked to verify you want to supervise the child's phone. Select Yes.
    Family Link with account verification listed and Yes highlighted.

Child's Phone

  1. You'll be asked if you want to join the family group. Select Join.
    Join Family Group prompt with Join highlighted.
  2. You'll be shown what your parent can monitor on your device. Select More, then Next.
    Account Monitoring list of features with More highlighted.
    Remaining account monitor settings with Next highlighted.
  3. You'll be asked to allow supervision, select Allow.
    Allow supervision prompt with Allow highlighted.
  4. You'll be asked to activate the profile manager. Select Activate this device admin app.
    Activate Profile Manager prompt with Activate this device admin app highlighted.
  5. The next step is to name your device. You'll be asked to go to your parent to make sure the name is okay with them. Select Next.
    Device name dialog with Next highlighted.
  6. Enter a name for this device, then select Next.
    Name device with name and Next button highlighted.
  7. You'll be asked to review the apps on your Child's phone. For each app, select the switch on the right to turn them off or on (they all start 'on'). Select More after each page of apps.
    List of Apps with each switch and more button highlighted.
  8. At the end of the apps list, apps that are required for the device to work are listed. Select Next.
    Apps list with Next highlighted.
  9. The device is now connected to the Family Link service, and can be monitored by the Adults in the family. Select Next.
    Devices connected with Next highlighted.
  10. Everything is now setup, select Done.
    Setup complete with Done highlighted.

Google does not allow individual accounts for children under the age of 13, normally.

The Google Families system makes an exception for this, allowing you to create the account as part of your family, specifically so you can more closely monitor and keep track of your child's activity.

If Your Child Is 13 Or Older
Visit gmail.com in your web browser with your child, and help them create a Google account, then add it to your Google Family.
If your Child Is Younger Than 13
You will need to use the Google Family Link app to create their account for them.
You must use the app to add a child account of any type.
In order to setup an account for a young child, you must have a credit card available. Your card will not be charged; this is used by Google as proof that you are an adult.
  1. Open Family Link.
    Family Link
  2. When asked if your child has a Google account, select No.
    Account setup with No highlighted.
  3. A message letting you know this will take about ten minutes is shown, select Next.
    Approximate Time
  4. Enter your child's first and last name, then select Next.
    Child's name with first and last name and next button highlighted
  5. Enter your child's birthday and gender (if you choose to do so), then select Next.
    Childs birthday and gender and next button highlighted.
  6. Enter an email address for your child, and select Next.
    Email address creation with Next highlighted.
  7. Enter a password for your child's account, then select Next.
    Child's password with next highlighted.
  8. You'll be informed that you need a credit card to complete setup for your child's account. As the message states, you will not be charged, but it is required to prove you are an adult. Select Next to continue.
    Information about creating child's account and the requirements, with next button highlighted.
  9. The Family Link Disclosure for Parents is displayed. Scroll through and read this information carefully, and when you fully understand, select the two check boxes indicating you agree to the terms, then select Agree at the bottom.

    It is critical that you read and understand this information. You are taking responsibility for the activities your child performs online.

    Family Link Disclosure for Parents with checkboxes and agree highlighted.
  10. Enter your credit card information, then select Accept.
    Again, your credit card is required to prove you are an adult. As you can see at the top, the charge for setting up the account is $0.00.
    Parental consent credit card entry with fields and accept button highlighted.
  11. Follow the instructions on screen to complete setting up your child's account on their device.
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