The Internet is one of the greatest tools on the planet for enhancing student learning. It is full of information that can be used for good but it is a scary place, especially for young minds. With children spending time online at younger and younger ages, it's crucial that we teach children how to protect themselves online. Most young children get the "stranger danger" talk at school, so they know how to handle strangers in their neighborhood and in face-to-face situations. While it is unlikely young people might never experience an issue online, we believe it is a good aim to both minimize potential harm and ensure students feel they always have someone to talk to.
Take a look at these 5 Best Internet Safety Resources for Teachers to educate yourself and your students about how to become safer users of the World Wide Web. It is also important to teach children how to treat others through technology. Online harassment has grown greatly. Cyberbullying is bullying that takes place over digital devices. All states have laws requiring schools to respond to bullying. As cyberbullying has become more common with the use of technology, many states now include cyberbullying, or mention cyberbullying offenses, under these laws. Schools may take action either as required by law, or with local or school policies that allow them to discipline or take other action. Some states also have provisions to address bullying if it affects school performance. Before posting, ask yourself:
- Would I say this to someone's face?
- Could someone take my message the wrong way?
- How would I feel if someone said this to me?
Digital citizenship education is an ongoing process, and the work of one teacher is not enough. Ideally, parents, students, educators, and community members must work together! Most of all, we need to create a positive culture where students feel empowered to use technology safely and purposefully.
Check out these additional resources on email and internet safety:
Check out this video on what to do if your email is hacked: