Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Best Cybersafety practices for young children

At Manaia Kindergarten we are often asked about our Cybersafety ideas, practices and policies.

  • I believe that the internet offers wonderful tools that enhance children's everyday learning, and tools to build community.
  • I believe that children should have access to the internet and a child has a right to have a presence on the internet if their family is in agreement.
  • I believe that by using the internet with children, children are able to learn some valuable lesson's about being safe on the world wide web. What a great time for children to learn such valuable lesson's when they are with trustworthy adults.

I also believe that children at home should have the same opportunities. Here are some safe practices that families can follow to teach children about the safe use of the internet.

1. Always have the computer in a family room - not in children's rooms (I would adhere to this until your children are ready to leave home)

2. Explore the use of safe internet filters on your computers. (read the comments on this post to learn more)

3. Always have an adult closely monitoring children's internet usage, while also giving children independent control of the computer. Just as you do with your children in public places - never be too far away from young children, give children more space/time on the computer as they grow older.

4. Teach your children that there are good (safe) sites and bad (unsafe) sites on the internet and what to do if they accidentally come across a site that doesn't look safe. There is an awesome example of this Cybersafety practice on Moving at the Speed of Creativity.

5. You should never put images of children on the internet without the permisson of their parents AND the permission of the child. Consider using pseudonyms or just first names of children. And teach children safe practices when our in real life public places. Keep personal contact details off the internet.

Those would be my top 5 tips. What are yours?

Readings:
NetSafety New Zealand
Cybersafety.org - safety tips for parents (including teens)

Blogged 27th July - Inbetweens Video on CyberSafety Practices

4 comments:

Fiona Grant said...

Hi Beverley, Have been exploring your blog and also some of the wonderful links that are relevant for ECE. I am working on content for the next Software for Learning Newsletter and we have had some requests for more ECE resources. I would love to recommend your blog and also include some of your recommendations from the software already listed on the site.http://tinyurl.com/qs3yly
I would appreciate it if you could contact me through my blog or email me f.grant@aucland.ac.nz

Many thanks,
Fiona

Linda said...

Kia ora Bev
Great Cybersafety Tips. Just wondering what you mean by 'internet filters'? Do you mean actively setting search engines filters, or purchasing filtering software? Just wondering how effective the software is?
Linda

Treehouse Dwellers said...

@ Fiona - hope you recieved my email - it didn't go through the first time but fiddled with the address and it seemed to go through.

@Linda - I thought I had added a question like yours to my post (must have been in a draft copy). They filter internet content. I'm not sure how. I do not have children at home but know of one family where a filter would have been a good idea. But I also think it should go hand in hand with educating your children about safe and unsafe sites. Hector might be a good place to start. This site http://tinyurl.com/deagel reviews the idea of content filtering. If anyone has any other reviews or ideas it would be great to hear them. I would also like to hear reviews on Hector and how it has worked practically for families.

Anonymous said...

your template displayed incorrectly in my browser(chrome)