Internet Safety and Positive Behaviours week
Safer Internet and Positive Behaviour Week
For our Safer Internet week, children from all classes have been considering the powerful influence that the Internet and technology has on their lives.
Not surprisingly, children were eager to talk about and explore this emotive subject, responding in a very honest and mature way. The Activities and resulting work culminated in an assembly where every child had a voice - there were posters, sketches, data analysis, a video clip and songs.
Beginning with the youngest, Reception children told us that we ought to restrict their time spent on technology otherwise they might not be able to sleep. This could affect their health and their ability to learn in school. A demonstration- a can of pop was shaken a little bit at a time, to represent how brains become 'fizzy' after too much 'screen-time'.
Year 1's message informed us of the important role adults play in helping their children make good choices. They performed a short sketch, in which children were encouraged to use their tablets safely. The whole class sang a song called, "Ask your grown up!" every time the characters needed some advice.
Year 2 told us about the importance of using kind words on the internet. Even though messaging apps are for children older than Primary school age, these apps have been used by some of the children. They all then told us about 'Digiduck' who had a big decision to make, and sang a short song about being safe online'.
Year 3 reported on a Jigsaw/philosophy session title, ‘Who is in Charge?’, which resulted in their generating their own questions for discussion. The class felt PEGI ratings are there to help the adults know which games and films they can safely let their children see. We saw a short film where children discussed their thoughts; they clearly felt that adults should oversee their children’s use of technology.
‘SMART online rules’, were the main message from Year 4. Children performed a short sketch about the effect that unkind words used online and Cyber Bullying can have on individuals. Each child had drawn a hand and named five safe and trusted adults, one for each finger, that they could turn to for help and advice.
Year 5 presented a variety of pieces that were their own work. They ranged from PEGI ratings, not sharing photos without permission, the value of a safe adult checking their children’s phones and tablets as well as the using kind words on the Internet to avoid unnecessary hurt and upset.
Statistics and analysis formed the basis for the Year 6 contribution. Alarmingly, they reported that by the age of 7, an average child has spent a year of their life online. After surveying their own class, they reported that 15% played between 6 and 7 hours a day. They then talked us through the age ratings for social media and games, despite knowing these age restrictions 91% play games that were too high a PEGI rating. 50% reported that they had no rules applied to their online activity at home. They performed their own sketches about the issues that they felt were a direct effect from online gaming, such as bad language, rude behaviour towards parents and sleep deprivation.
We are very proud of the maturity and honesty that our children have brought to the discussions this week. They are genuinely aware of the need to be guided through the online world; they recognise the difficult decisions they need to make as they continue to grow older.
Our role as the safe and trusted adult is absolutely crucial in guiding, modelling positive behaviours and enforcing rules so that they can enjoy the online world safely.