Information and communications technology (ICT) is part of our lives. We use it every day for study, work, entertainment, shopping and getting in touch with our family and friends. It is one of the quickest and easiest ways of finding information, sharing idea and working with other people.
And like everything, it has to be used safely and responsibly. As well as opportunities, there are also risks that we need to be aware of and guard against. As children get older they spend more and more of their waking hours connected to digital devices—impacting their reputations, learning opportunities, and futures.
This area is designed to provide you with information and links to a variety of different websites to help you understand the benefits and the risks.
e-Safety adviser is a support website for Schools and Parents. They provide important information and updates regarding safety on-line.
|Newsletters for Schools||Newsletters for Parents|
|Specifically aimed at schools (teachers and support staff) and other professionals to offer the latest news, guidelines, opinion and resources in the world of online safety in short bitesizes with links to further reading and resources.||Recommended by Ofsted to keep parents up to date with an informed newsletter. You can host this on your website, Tweet or put it on Facebook – whatever you want to do, just keep it in its original form.|
‘The Parents and Carers’ Guide to the Internet, below, by CEOP and Think U Know provide a light hearted and realistic look at what it takes to be a better online parent. The show covers topics such as, talking to your child about the technologies they use and the things they might see, such as pornography.
With interviews from leading experts such as, Professor Tanya Byron, Dr Linda Papadopoulos and Reg Bailey, as well as key industry players from Facebook, Club Penguin and Moshi Monsters , this online guide aims to equip you with the tools to have those tricky conversations with your children and keep your family safe online.
The internet has changed all of our lives, particularly our children’s. For parents and carers this opens up a whole new world of things to be aware of. Click here for practical tips and simple guidance.
Know IT All
When you click on the logo you will be taken to an online version of the a CD-ROM which has been written and produced by the children’s charity Childnet International. Because the majority of the content includes video introductions and interactive activities, it may take time to download (depending on the speed of your connection). However once you have downloaded the Home Page you can access individual sections separately.
A Parents’ Guide to Technology
The range of devices that children will be using or asking for are constantly changing and developing. This links below will introduce you to some of the most popular devices, highlighting the safety tools available and empowering you with the knowledge you need to support your children to use these technologies safely and responsibly.
|BlackberrysiPhonesAndroid phones||Xbox 360PlayStation 3PSPNintendo WiiNintendo 3DSNintendo DSi||iPod TouchiPad|
Click here to read and download additional resources on e-safety.
Online gaming is hugely popular with children and young people. Recent research shows that gaming is one of the top activities enjoyed by 9-16 year olds online, with gaming more popular than social networking.
From sport related games to mission based games and quests inspiring users to complete challenges, interactive games cater for a wide range of interests, and can enable users to link up and play together.
Games can provide a fun and social form of entertainment often encouraging teamwork and cooperation when played with others.
Just like offline games, they can have educational benefits, and be used, for example, to develop skills and understanding.
Traditionally, games could be bought from shops, often in the form of a disk for use on a PC or console. Now, games can also be downloaded online. Games are played on many platforms, with those bought in shops often having an online component to them.
Internet connectivity in a game adds a new opportunity for gamers as it allows players to find and play against, or with, other players from around the world (in a multi-player game).
We know that parents and carers do have questions and concerns about games, often about the type of games their child plays, and for how much time their child is playing.
Click here to read and download a leaflet which provide an introduction to online gaming and advice for parents specifically related to online gaming.
Safe Sexting: No such thing
‘Sexting’ is a growing trend for young people where they send provocative images of themselves to their friends via mobile phones.” Parents are urged to warn children about the dangers of ‘sexting’.
Once a photo is sent, you lose control of that image, and it is impossible to take it back. The person receiving it can forward the image, copy it, post it online, or share it with anyone.
In addition to the emotional damage that can come from having a sexual image shared with the entire school or community, there is damage to the person’s reputation. Remember that once that photo is out there, it’s impossible to take it back.
There are also serious legal consequences. Sharing sexual or naked photos of minors, even sharing with other minors, is illegal. Sexting can and has led to prosecution for child pornography.
Prevention – click here to read this resource which has been created by the NCMEC (National Centre for Missing and Exploited Children) in the US and is aimed at helping parents to understand what sexting is and why children do it.
Facts – click here to find out more information on the dangers of children ‘sexting’. This resource has been created by the New South Wales Government in Australia and helps parents to understand what sexting is and why children do it.
Advice from mobile phone companies
Vodafone has produced two magazines called ‘Digital Parenting’ to help parents get to grips and get involved with their children’s digital world.
The magazine brings together experts from around the world to give parents the latest advice on digital issues, such as online reputation, location services, sexting, cyberbullying and illegal content. Parents, teenagers and grandparents also share their personal experiences and a series of ‘How to…’ tutorials guide parents through the safety and privacy controls on Facebook, Google, Microsoft and Vodafone.
Click here to see the latest online version of the magazine published September 2012.
Click here read what children think about cyber bullying.
Click here to visit the Vodaphone Parent’s Area.
Orange have produced a free guide for parents and carers that discusses safety issues and provides specific talking points for parents to raise with children when giving them a mobile phone. These include Spam, text bullying, phone theft, adult content and a range of other issues. It also provides suggestions about where to find more information on the subjects concerned. Click on the logo to view this resource.
02 heve produced another website: Keeping kids safe. Children, mobile and the internet. This website has been written to help adults understand what kids really do on their mobiles and the internet. And it’s also to help p toarents and carers talk to kids openly about the risks, so they know how to protect themselves.
YouTube is a video-sharing website on which users can upload, share, and view videos. Anyone who goes to the site can view the videos that are posted on this site. The videos are anything from beginner videos to more professional videos.
You can put just about anything you want on the YouTube site. You can also watch just about anything on YouTube. There are some great videos out there on YouTube that are very interesting and entertaining and will never be seen anywhere else.
Click here for advice on using YouTube.
You’ve heard of Facebook, you may have your own account. While most social networking sites stipulate a minimum user age of 13 or 14, users are often younger than this and as a parent or carer it’s really important that you familiarise yourself with these sites so that you can help to support your children in using them in a safe and constructive way.
Facebook’s advice to parents – this link will take you to the facebook’s help centre.
Click here to see Facebook safety advice to parents.
A Parent’s guide to Facebook – this booklet is a 32-page guide which features hands-on, step-by-step instructions and illustrations, as well as discussion points on age limits, privacy, and reputation protection. It covers mobile phone and computer-based use of Facebook and also considers the site’s newest features, including Places, Groups, and the latest privacy updates (Autumn 2010). Whilst the booklet is an American based resource (use of the term cell phone etc) it’s an excellent tool for parents and carers to use to highlight issues to consider and safer approaches to take when your child is using Facebook.
A Parent’s guide to Instagram – Created by UK Safer Internet Centre, helping parents to be well informed about the issues teens face when they go online. This guide will help prepare you to give young people the guidance they need.
ConnectSafely also has an at-a-glance interactive chart with recommendations and links to pages in Facebook where teenagers can configure the best privacy settings for them.