Internet safety for children must be a top priority for everyone!
The internet is an amazing resource which enables children and young people to connect, communicate and be creative in a number of different ways, on a range of devices. Increasingly our children are online at school, at home and with their friends. Laptops, smartphones, tablets, gaming consoles and media players mean they can use the internet wherever they go. Whenever they are online they are at risk from unsuitable content, accidentally disclosing their personal data, illegal downloads, file sharing, spyware, viruses, inappropriate advances (grooming) and cyberbullying.
Children are learning to navigate the world. They tend to be enthusiastic and trusting. The flip side of these wonderful qualities is that they can lack caution and the ability to discern when they might be at risk. When we meet people face to face, they give us multiple cues that help us understand whether their intentions are good or unpleasant. The internet masks these signals, and it is far more difficult to tell whether a person you meet online really is who they say they are. It is therefore vital that we work together to teach our children how to use the internet safely.
The online world is always changing, and being able to keep up to date with your children’s use of technology can be a challenge. Furthermore, many parents feel that their children have better technical skills than they do so please refer to the information contained in the links below to find out what you can do to protect your child whilst they are online.
Children have access to Google Classroom, where teachers will provide safe learning links that children can use for research. Teachers will ensure that these websites are age-appropriate. An example of a website used by children is: https://www.natgeokids.com/uk/. Our school website also has learning links that the children regularly use and can be accessed from home too. This includes websites such as: https://play.ttrockstars.com/ and https://learn.nessy.com/. Occasionally, children may be asked to watch videos using YouTube. These are carefully selected by the teacher and a direct link is given to the children.
Children from Year 2 – Year 6 have been given four child-safe search engine websites. These are also accessible from Google Classroom to ensure that independent research is safe.
Only children in KS2 are able to interact with their own class through Google Classroom on their ‘stream’ which is monitored by the class teacher. Children cannot send private/direct messages. Some children may have access to other classes such as Choir where they can communicate to those specifically invited to that class. No children at Malmesbury have online access to anybody outside of the school. Occasionally, visitor assemblies or workshops may be done virtually and led by the class teacher. Any questions put forward from a child to the visitor is done through the class teacher.
Everyone in the school community is very aware of the need for our children to be safe when using the internet therefore there are links below that you can use to access if you need any advice or guidance. Information on the filtering systems used by Malmesbury can be found at the following link:
If you do have any concerns regarding internet safety please come and talk to us.