Learning how to be safe and confident explorers of the online world with a little help from a new Google scheme, students at a Burnley primary academy have become Internet Legends.
Now fully-fledged online heroes, pupils at Casterton Primary Academy have been learning about the importance of internet safety with help from digital family life experts, Parent Zone, who support children, parents, and schools around the world and who put on a special workshop for the kids.
Last year, Google conducted research with more than 200 teachers to learn about their experience with online safety in the classroom, finding that teachers believe children should start learning about online safety as early as the age of seven and that 99% felt that this should be a part of the curriculum.
As a result, Google launched the PSHE Association-accredited Be Internet Legends scheme in partnership with family internet safety experts Parent Zone, an educational programme aimed at 7- to 11-year-olds to help them be safe using online platforms, teaching resources, face-to-face workshops, and free training resources availble to over 19,000 UK teachers.
“The children had lots of positive comments to share from the assembly and the teachers were very impressed with their engagement and enjoyment throughout," said Amy Hundsdoerfer, Assistant Principal at Casterton Primary Academy, of the scheme, which has reached over a million children across the UK.
"It’s so important in the modern age, where there are regularly horror stories about children accessing inappropriate content online, that we educate our children and their families on how to stay safe online," Amy added.
Based on Google’s ‘Be Internet Legends’ scheme, the workshop taught students about the five core online safety pillars: Be Internet Sharp – Think before you share; Be Internet Alert – Spot phishing scams and report them; Be Internet Secure – Keep personal information safe; Be Internet Kind – Spread positivity online; and Be Internet Brave – Stand up to inappropriate information online.
“We [were] delighted to visit Casterton Primary Academy to help teach children about how to Be Internet Legends," said Rosie Luff, online safety public policy manager at Google. "By getting acquainted with what we believe are the five core areas of online safety, we want to prepare children to have a safe and positive experience online."
Vicki Shotbolt, founder and CEO of Parent Zone, added: “It is essential that, from a young age, children learn to think carefully and critically about what they see and do online. Parent Zone has teamed with Google to teach children the tools they need to keep them safer, spot scams and unkind behaviour and to understand how their online actions can affect others.
"These are vital skills for being more confident in the digital age," she continued.