The internet is an amazing resource which enables children and young people to connect, communicate and be creative in a number of different ways, on a range of devices.
However, the internet is always changing, and being able to keep up to date with your children’s use of technology can be a challenge.
You may sometimes feel that your children have better technical skills than you do, however children and young people still need advice and protection when it comes to managing their lives online.
Issues that your child may encounter on the internet will vary depending on their age and online activities
In school, e-safety is taught as part of the National Curriculum, which means that children are encouraged to think about and engage with the technological world in which they live, considering some of the huge opportunities it gives to us, as well as some of the risks and dangers it can pose.
Below you will different resources which you may find useful – this includes informative videos, downloadable PDFs and helpful links that give suggestions about how to navigate this continually change landscape.
The UK Safer Internet Centre group the 4 main risks as being linked to their own conduct, the content they see, the contact they have with others as well as the commericalisation of the internet. Find out more about each of these issues here.
Safer Internet Day
Safer Internet Day is celebrated globally in February each year to promote the safe and positive use of digital technology for children and young people, and to inspire a national conversation about using technology responsibly, respectfully, critically, and creatively. Safer Internet Day 2022 was on 8th February and was celebrated with the theme ‘All fun and games? Exploring respect and relationships online’. Coordinated in the UK by the UK Safer Internet Centre, Safer Internet Day is celebrated in over a hundred countries coordinated by the joint Insafe/INHOPE network, with the support of the European Commission, and national Safer Internet Centres across Europe
For Top Tips for under 11s, please go to: https://saferinternet.org.uk/safer-internet-day/safer-internet-day-2022/top-tips-for-under-11s
Here at St Mary’s we try to teach children how to use digital media in a safe and constructive manner. In particular, we try to help them:
- Use the internet safely
- Recognise the dangers of giving out personal information to strangers
- Question online information and help them recognise when it may not be true
- Use the internet and social media in ways to not hurt or offend others
- Recognise inappropriate behaviour and the importance of talking to a trusted adult if they are worried or concerned
The internet can be accessed via many different platforms from PCs to gaming consoles and through many portable devices. It can be difficult to know what your child is doing online or indeed, even knowing when they are online.
Keeping your child safe in the digital world is something that needs to be tackled as a partnership between everyone involved with their growth and development and the following web links may help you in understanding their world which is very different from the one that we experienced in our childhood.
Keeping your child safe on....
With schools closed to most pupils due to coronavirus (COVID-19), your child will likely be spending more time on devices than usual, especially if doing remote learning.
To help keep your children as safe as possible online, Parent Hub has put together a set of guides to keep your child safe online on different social media platforms. It gives you practical instructions on how to set parental controls on the most common devices children use.
Loot Boxes and Skins Betting
Parenting in a Digital Age
This useful presentation gives some interesting information about children’s use of digital equipment, highlighting some of the dangers they may face as well as giving you some useful tools for talking with your child about some of those risks.
Online Gaming can provide access for children to vast arrays of people from different parts of the world, with the means to chat and interact with them. Have a look at these useful guides for some of the main gaming platforms, and some tips for what questions to ask when buying!
Phone and Tablets
Smartphones are mobile phones with internet access. They are capable of a range of functions, including social networking, listening to music, playing games, browsing the internet, checking emails, taking photos and videos and watching TV – along with the usual texting and calling!
Smartphones provide a variety of interesting activities and ways for young people to engage with their friends and families.
Likewise, tablets such as the iPad provide a variety of interesting activities and great education opportunities for young people.
However, it is important to be aware of what these devices can do and how you can talk with your child to help them to use this technology in safe and positive way.
Your child’s access to a whole range of social media outlets will continue to grow as they get older. Below you will see a useful guide to some of the most current social media platforms – we would encourage you to look closely at the age restrictions applied to each platform, as well as some of the hints and tips linked to privacy for each one.
There are many great resources out on the internet that can help you with you and your child’s journey online. Here are a few that have been helpful to us;
Thinkyouknow (advice from the National Crime Agency to stay safe online)
Internet matters (support for parents and carers to keep their children safe online)
Parent info (support for parents and carers to keep their children safe online)
LGfL (support for parents and carers to keep their children safe online)
Net-aware (support for parents and careers from the NSPCC)
Online material promoting terrorism/extremism or encourage violence can be reported anonymously by anyone using the Online Tool on the Gov.UK website
You can find links below to stories that you can read with your children that highlight some of the issues your children may face online.
Digiduck Stories – 3 to 7 years
Smartie the Penguin – 3 to 7 years
The Adventures of Kara, Winston and the SMART Crew – 7 to 11 years