WHAT IS ONLINE SAFETY?
Online Safety is the term used to talk about many things but, in its simplest form, it is all about staying safe online and when using digital devices. It is essential that children feel comfortable using the Internet and understand the important, and forever increasing, role that it plays in modern-day life. However, it is vital that children understand how to stay safe online and protect themselves from potential threats, dangers, distressing content and radicalisation.
This regularly-updated section of our website is aimed at helping parents/carers become familiar with aspects of Online Safety and how to support their children in the most effective ways possible. It’s important to remember that we don’t teach children to swim by showing them a video – we put them in the water and help them develop the skills to remain safe. The same applies with Online Safety – children won’t develop the necessary skills if we don’t let them use the Internet and online services and discover potential dangers as they arise.
WHAT CAN I USE TO HELP ME?
Children are taught about Online Safety throughout their time at the school. However, it is an area that benefits greatly from additional input and reinforcement at home - hence why we have provided this page and hope that you find it extremely useful.
Of course, there is also the number one best-selling book PENGUINPIG and MONKEYCOW written by our very own Mr Spendlow which is currently touring as a stage production too. It aims to deliver a strong message about Online Safety to children between the ages of 3-7. He has also written advice for the Child Protection Company which can be accessed here: http://www.childprotectioncompany.com/CPC/news/tag/stuart-spendlow/
WHAT ARE THE LATEST TRENDS?
Additionally, there are some great guides for parents and carers on understanding certain trends. These are vital reading and have been kindly produced by National Online Safety.
Parents' Guide to...
WHAT IF MY CHILDREN KNOW MORE ABOUT TECHNOLOGY THAN ME?
It’s not necessarily all about knowing how technologies work or how to operate them, but more about understanding their uses and the dangers that could be associated with them. The good news, however, is that Childnet International has a dedicated section for parents/carers which includes:
- Conversation starters to discuss Online Safety with your children
- Hot Topics on issues affecting youngsters online these days
- A glossary of internet terms and abbreviations
- Help on how to make a report online, including links to the Child Exploitation Online Protection (CEOP) Centre
To access these resources, click here to visit Childnet.
The NSPCC also have excellent guidance for parents on discussing aspects of Online Safety with their children. They offer tried and tested strategies as well as providing support for various scenarios that you may be concerned are affecting your child. Click here to visit the NSPCC page for parents and carers.\
As well as all of the resources listed here, there are many organisations, charities and companies that can offer support and advice around the subject of Online Safety. If you have concerns or wish to discuss anything further, please make an appointment to speak with Mr Spendlow.
Finally, the image below can help provide an easy way in to a discussion with children. The best way of approaching the subject of Online Safety is be overt - the moment children know they're being monitored in a covert way, they hide their activity and are less likely to approach an adult in the event of danger.