At Fairfield Park Lower School, we understand the importance of integrating online safety into our curriculum so that it is covered frequently and in depth from EYFS to Year 4. Each year group teaches the importance of using technology safely and who they can speak to if they see something online that makes them feel uncomfortable. We aim to ensure that every effort is made to safeguard our children and prepare them for the evolving digital world that we now live in.
We believe that by working together, we can all keep well informed regarding online safety issues and make the most of the positives the internet has to offer safely. Please take a look at the attachments for further information which include guides for social media use, apps and remote learning tips. The following website also has some useful online videos from professionals about the importance of e-safety: www.thinkuknow.co.uk/parents/
Online Safety at School
We use the schools computing program Purple Mash to support the teaching of online safety throughout the school. This covers: how to use technology safely; who we can talk to if we see something uncomfortable; programmes and apps that are age appropriate; responding to spam/inappropriate messages; creating safe and strong passwords; researching and discussing reliable data and information in the world around us.
We also have online safety assemblies which talk about which apps and programmes the children are using at home and which ones are age appropriate. This also provides the children with the opportunities to ask questions and find out more information about keeping safe online.
Online Safety at Home
Below are some ground rules could you create together as a family which could help you create a safe online learning environment at home:
- Discuss and agree as a family how the internet will be used in your house at a level that is appropriate to your children’s ability and age.
- Discuss with your children what they think is and isn’t acceptable to do online, then add your own rules and boundaries to the list.
- Decide on what information should be kept private online, such as contact information, photos in school uniform, and agree rules for making and meeting online friends.
- Set clear boundaries relating to use of webcams, video chat, live streaming and live voice on different devices; even when children are talking to people they already know, they can still experience risks.
- Explore how to create strong passwords and discuss how to keep passwords safe, for example not sharing them with their friends or using the same password for several accounts.
- Share quality time together. Consider nominating ‘tech-free’ areas or times, such as your child’s bedroom or dinner time, where you can give each other undivided attention and share offline experiences, like reading a book together.
- Install antivirus software and secure your internet connection. - More advice on online security can be accessed at www.getsafeonline.org/
- Make the most of the parental controls on your children’s internet enabled devices and games consoles to help restrict access to inappropriate content.
- Read any parental guidance and safety recommendations for games, apps or websites before allowing your child to use them. – Please click on the links below to read more guidance for well-known apps:
- The internet provides vast opportunities for children, both educationally and socially. As adults, it is important that we acknowledge the many wonderful and positive opportunities the internet provides for our children; we just need to steer them in the right direction.
- Ensure you make appropriate checks on anyone online offering educational support to you and your child; whilst many people will be acting with good intentions, it’s important that we are all vigilant when children are using the internet and act together to ensure they are protected from anyone who may pose a risk to them.
- Encourage your child’s creativity by teaching them how to take photos or make videos safely; these can be used to make a collage or be shared with family and friends. There are many exciting programs, games and learning opportunities on our school program Purple Mash.
- Being online should be a sociable activity; keep your devices in a communal area and take it in turns to choose a game or video that the whole family can enjoy together.
- Maintain an open mind and positive attitude when talking with your child about the internet. Take an active interest in your child’s online activities and engage in their online world with them. - Ask your child, which games, apps, websites or tools they like to use and why; playing together with your child can often open opportunities to discuss safe behaviour online. - Ask your child if they know where to go for help; do they know where to find safety advice or information about privacy settings and know how to report or block users on their games and websites.
- Make sure your child knows – to come to you, or another trusted adult, for help if something happens online that makes him or her feel scared, worried or uncomfortable.
- Talk to your child about being kind online and encourage them not to retaliate or reply to cyberbullying and to keep any evidence; you may need to show your child how to take screenshots on their device.