By Evan Karagiannis, eLearning Integrator
The Junior School recently staged its 4th annual Safer Internet Week. Safer Internet Week equips students to become digitally fluent 21st century citizens through authentic, unique and engaging learning experiences. Throughout the week, Kindergarten to Year 6 students participated in various age appropriate activities.
Safer Internet Week was kicked off with a virtual excursion run by a Kids Helpline counsellor to help our Kindergarten boys understand the dangers of going online, and the strategies they can use to keep safe, protect personal information and find help when things go wrong.
The boys enjoyed the popular iPad Boot Camp afternoon designed and hosted by the Year 6 IT Leaders. Boys participated in various workshops covering the functional and creative uses of iPads from coding in Scratch Junior and animating pictures to talk in ChatterPix, to creating an obstacle course for Sphero racing.
Years 1 and 2
Years 1 and 2 joined Kindergarten in the virtual excursion with the Kids Helpline counsellor. The boys enjoyed the Hector’s World programme, an animated series that follows the online experiences of Hector and his friends. Year 1 learned about protecting personal information, while Year 2 covered themes including computer security and cyberbullying. After each episode, the classes participated in discussions, mind mapping and question and answer activities to reinforce the concepts learnt.
Year 3 began their week with an interactive gamified quiz, Comic Book Capers, where they were asked to help the Gizmo family become cybersmart by making the right choices when online. This was followed by a self-directed session where the boys became quizmasters and designed their own Kahoot Quizzes based on the Junior School ICT Agreement and CoRe (Code of Respect). The week concluded with a virtual excursion hosted by a Kids Helpline counsellor which focused on the positive uses of technology. This session covered the three online R’s - respect, responsibility and reputation.
Our Years 4 to 6 classes had a guest visitor, Senior Constable Jim, from Ashfield Police Station. Constable Jim engaged the boys with his stories and presentation on digital safety and security. During the week, Year 4 stepped into the shoes of a bystander involved in a cyberbullying scenario as they participated in Cybersmart Heros, a programme created by the Office of the eSafety Commissioner. The boys were led through real world examples as they learnt to recognise cyberbullying situations and how to be a positive bystander.
Year 5 watched #GameOn, a cybersafety video that follows the online experiences of students in various situations and shows the consequences of making poor decisions online. Classes then discussed the topics of cyberbullying, excessive gaming, sharing passwords, digital spaces and downloading illegal content.
Year 6 began their individual journeys to acquire an eSmart Digital Licence. The Digital Licence is operated by the Alannah and Madeline Foundation and features eight modules. The modules include learning resources and quizzes that cover the importance of digital reputation, privacy, gaming, in-app purchasing, traps, screen-time implications, and friends and strangers. When students successfully complete all eight modules, they receive an eSmart Digital Licence recognising that each boy understands how to play, learn and socialise online in a smart, safe and responsible way.
Safer Internet Week was very well received and is part of Trinity’s ongoing commitment to raising awareness about cybersafety. The Year 6 IT Leaders impressed with boundless enthusiasm, ideas, planning, addressing their peers and participating in year group activities.
Although Safer Internet Week is over for another year, the never-ending task of growing our boys to become digitally fluent global citizens continues. Throughout the year, boys will participate in further cybersafety education whether it’s in classroom activities, Life Skills programmes or eSmart Week. Trinity is proud to be an eSmart school, an initiative of the Alannah and Madeline Foundation, that uses a cultural change approach to improve cyber safety and reduce cyber bullying.
Supporting learning at home
The internet has become an integral part of life and education. It’s a powerful resource, enabling people of all ages to learn and communicate in new ways. For all of its benefits, there is no denying that the internet presents a number of risks to children and challenges for parents. The School has identified four key steps for parents to adopt cyber safe practices at home:
An essential part of keeping children safe is to make them aware of the risks and discuss ways to avoid potential problems. Please see the links below for internet safety resources.
Encourage and support your son to become a confident internet user. Children need to know that they can make the right choices, and that they can talk to you about anything that makes them feel uncomfortable when online.
3. Make computers safe
One of the most practical ways of keeping children safe online is to use internet content filters to ensure your son is not inadvertently exposed to something inappropriate.
Boys may behave differently online than they would usually, so it’s important to monitor their online activity. Placing computers in family areas can help make supervision easier for parents.
Here are some helpful resource links for parents:
The Office of the Children’s eSafety Commissioner offers a great government-funded resources committed to helping young people have safe, positive experiences online.
Common Sense Media offers an unbiased collection of apps, movies, TV shows, games and other digital content that is sorted into age category recommendations.
iPhone, iPod and iPad ‘Ask to Buy’ is a guide created by Apple to turn on parental control and spending management on your son’s device. All purchase requests (App Store and iTunes) must receive parental approval before they can be purchased and installed.
Your Internet Service Provider (ISP) is required to provide an Internet Content filter approved by the ACMA. Filter offerings between providers varies and no filtering solution is foolproof so parental supervision is recommended to ensure children are kept safe online.
Trinity’s Pastoral Care guidelines focus on the fundamentals of good parenting — providing both care and discipline — enabling boys to grow into self-confident, trustworthy and resilient young men. Combined with an ongoing partnership between the School and home, your son will thrive in a consistent, caring and nurturing environment.
For over a century, Trinity has been nurturing and encouraging boys from Pre-Kindergarten to Year 12 to grow in mind, body and spirit. To discover the Trinity difference, and how we help boys to realise their potential, passion and purpose, register for our Open Day.