My name is Claudia and I'm a teacher who helps parents with their kids remote and distance learning as well as well as how kids can best learn online and with technology!

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  • Claudia Wild

How to Teach Kids to Use the Internet Safely

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Protecting Personal Information

Passwords

Email Safety

Social Media

Cyberbullying

Apps

Parents as Internet Safety Role Model

Free Interactive Resources


Just like learning to cross the road safely and use a knife safely, children need to be taught about the dangers of using the internet and how they can keep themselves and others safe online. As with anything, children can learn better and understand more when we can make a lesson fun and interactive for them - that's why I have found some of the most engaging, child-friendly resources on internet safety for you to use with your students or your children at home.


Teach kids how to stay safe online (Photo by Min An from Pexels)

So what do kids need to know about using the web to be able to protect themselves and stay safe online? Let's go through some of the main areas where kids can be at risk on the internet and how they can learn to keep safe:


Protecting Personal Information

Children should learn to differentiate between personal information, like their date of birth or their address, and other information about themselves, such as their hobbies or favourite colours. They then need to know that it is never safe to share personal information with anyone on the internet and that anyone who tries to find out personal details about them online could be dangerous.


Passwords

Why do we use passwords? What's the difference between a weak and strong password and why is this important? These are questions children should consider and understand in order to be able to use passwords effectively to protect themselves online.


See also: What is Digital Literacy?


Email Safety

Many children have email accounts these days, whether they use it to keep in touch with friends and family or to help manage online accounts or schoolwork. It's important that kids know the risks and responsibilities that come with having an email account and how to responsibly use email to avoid them.


Social Media

Children should have a basic understanding of how social media platforms work and learn how to post responsibly, bearing in mind that social media posts should be appropriate, never contain personal information and that they should only contain their own content and no one else's.


Cyber Bullying

Kids should be aware of what cyberbully is, what form it can take and be able to recognise it and seek help if it ever happens to them or someone else. They should also remember to be kind and respectful to others at all times, just as they would in real life!


Apps

Kids should understand the basics of what an app is exactly and how to use them responsibly including asking permission before spending money in or on an app.




Parents as Internet Safety Role Models

Don't forget that nothing you tell your children about being safe online will mean anything unless they see you practising what you preach too! Kids will learn so much more about how to use the internet responsibly as well as developing a true respect for the digital world if they see the grown-ups around them using the internet safely and responsibly.


I read a fascinating book last year (The New Childhood by Jordan Shapiro) about how parents should avoid thinking of the internet and the digital world and games as negative influences that should just be suppressed and minimised, but instead how and why they should incorporate them into theirs and their children's lives for everyone's benefit.


Internet Safety Resources for Kids

Sammy's internet safety guide for kids - fun and interactive learning for free!

Learn to be 'Internet Awesome' in Google's Interland, an interactive game about online safety for kids.
  • 'Be Internet Awesome' with Google - watch educational videos about online safety and play and explore in 'Interland' - learn about kindness and mindfulness online as well as data protection and phishing through this awesome game.


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