Welcome to our first e-safety newsletter. The Internet is essential in 21st century life for education, business and social interaction. As children move up through the school their access to various types of technology increases and it stands to reason that their exploration and curiosity increases too. The positives of the digital world overwhelmingly outweigh the negatives but children, schools and parents all need to be aware of various online risks.
Are you planning to buy your children any computer or console games over the holiday?
Children often ask to play games based on what other children are playing which may mean they ask to play a game that is not always age appropriate for them. Childnet recommend that you talk to other parents first because you may find that actually whilst a lot of children are talking about a game, they’re not actually playing it! Childnet also suggest that in order to make an informed decision about whether your child should play a game you should:
1) Research – what is the PEGI rating for the game? Can people contact your child through the game?
Childnet recommend looking at other parent reviews on https://www.commonsensemedia.org/.
2) Discuss – talk to your child to find out why they want to play the game and maybe offer some more age appropriate alternatives.
3) Explain – Childnet stress how important it is to talk to your child and explain to them why you have deemed a game unsuitable.
One of the issues we see spilling over into the classroom is friends being unkind to each other whilst playing online. The very nature of online games means that it is very easy to send a nasty message in the heat of the moment and not think about the immediate consequences. How do you think your child would behave when they lose at their favourite game? Talk to your children about losing, talk about how they communicate online, sit with them whilst they play their games and review their online conversations to make sure they are being positive digital citizens.