Mind the Gap – keep your child/ren safe in the real world!
Computers are a part of everyday life, Green Lanes School encourages the use of ICT for learning. With modern technology we realise many children are using the internet regularly at home, therefore we have put together some information for parents/carers on how to keep your children safe online.
Here are some things you may want to do to help your child/ren ‘Stay Safe’ in the online world:
- Set ground rules and with younger children agree which websites they can visit. Remember these will vary depending upon the ages of your child/ren.
- Agree time limits and regular breaks. Remember letting children play video games just before bedtime may stop them sleeping and have an impact on their learning.
- Find out how to set the parental controls and safe search. Consider buying parental monitoring/ control software for younger children. Remember none of these are 100% effective and supervision is always needed.
- Check the home page of your child/ren’s favourite game. This will give you an overview of the website and its suitability.
- Spend 30 minutes watching your child/ren play an online game so that you can see the content and be happy that it is suitable for them. Check the age ratings of games at PEGI www.pegi.info/en/index/. Remember video games ratings are all about the content and not the difficulty of the game.
- Say NO to your child playing any game that has a rating of 18 years and above or using websites that you think are unsuitable.
- Talk to your child/ren about their privacy settings and ask them to show you how to change these settings. Encourage your child/ren to only have online friends they know in the real world.
- Tell your child/ren what to do if they ever feel frightened or scared when online or using their mobile phone. It is important that your child/ren know they can always talk to you and you will help them ( you may not know the answer but by talking to the school, other parents, ThinkUknow FAQs, mobile phone provider and so on you will be able to find a solution)
- Visit ThinkUknow www.thinkuknow.co.uk and look at the parents section. Show your child the ‘Report Abuse’ button and together click to see the advice and links.
- Visit Childnet and have a look at the parents section www.childnetint.org/safety/parents.aspx Towards the bottom of the page ‘Parents Online’ is an interactive animation specifically developed for parents.
Useful Websites for Parents/Carers:
- www.childnet-int.org – A non-profit making organisation working directly with children, parents and teachers to ensure that the issues of online child protection and children’s safe and positive use of the internet are addressed. Childnet International produce an online CD guide specifically for parents KnowITAll – www.childnet-int.org/kia/ www.thinkuknow.co.uk – The Child Exploitation and Online Protection (CEOP) Centre has set up its own edcational website which has been designed and written specifically for children, young people, teachers, parents and carers.
- http://learn.go-on.co.uk/ – My Guide is a government website designed to help adults get started with using computers and the Internet www.getsafeonline.org (A beginners guide to using the Internet safety, including a quiz and some video tutorials about how to ‘stay safe’ on-line).
- www.kidsmart.org.uk/ – Kidsmart is an award winning internet safety website for parents and those working with children. It has been developed by the children’s internet charity Childnet International and has excellent information on many of the technologies used by children, with guidance on how to ‘stay safe’ online.
- http://consumers.ofcom.org.uk/2011/04/managing-your-media-protecting-your-children-in-a-digital-world// – Managing your Media – Good Ofcom online safety video and guide for parents/carers.
- www.bullying.co.uk – One in five young people have experienced bullying by text message or via email. This web site gives advice for children and parents on bullying.
- www.chatdanger.com/ – This website is about the potential dangers with interactive services online like chat, IM, online games, email and on mobiles. It provides information, advice, true stories and games. The resource page also contains a number of links to other useful websites.
- http://parents.vodafone.com/ – Vodafone have developed this website in conjunction with mumsnet. It is very accessible and provides information and guidance to parents with understanding their child’s digital world and get more involved. There is even an on-line test to see how much you know!
Tips for staying safe online:
- Make sure you keep new online friends strictly online. If someone you don't know asks to be your online friend you must ensure an adult knows about it.
- Know how to use the CEOP Button and how to report it to the CEOP Centre if you are concerned about someone’s online behaviour towards you.