A huge thank you to Simon Aston for delivering a fantastic session about ‘Online Safety’ and a huge thank you to those parents who turned out last night despite the awful weather! It was a very eye opening session and that would have been very beneficial to lots of families!

Just incase you couldn’t attend last night, here are a few tips and apps that were discussed which will help in any house hold.

Netware is an NSPCC app that is totally free and gives you a bit more understanding about different games and apps your children might use and advice with these apps.

Internet matters app is an interactive quiz that your children can do and will open up a conversation about what they are doing online. Advice from Simon when talking to your child about what they do online is to replace why with how questions to delve deeper, as why is often met with ‘I don’t know’. How did you get on that site? What did you click on?

Gaming is becoming more and more addictive as each day passes and it is frightening to think that 75% of gamers is made up of adults and the average age of a gamer is 35 – not children! It is inevitable that your children will play online but please consider the following advice: don’t allow them to wear a headset; keep consoles downstairs so that, if something crops up that your child isn’t comfortable with, you can follow it up with them and online gaming MUST come with a time limit! There is no set guidance about how long your child should spend online but statistics show that anything close to 3 hours per day brings high levels of anxiety and addictive behaviours.

One thing that appealed to most parents last night was making sure autoplay is turned off on Youtube so that videos can’t jump from one video to another and so on: this is how children’s videos could turn inappropriate within minutes.

The 4Ds are really important when establishing ground rules for everyone in your household.

  1. Digital free zone – bedroom needs to be free from devices.
  2. Digital sunset – don’t be on devices two hours before bed.
  3. Digital role models – children are amazing imitators so give them something to imitate.
  4. Digital Detox – free yourselves from gaming for a few days and go out into the real world. Remember children are great at imitating – give them something amazing to imitate!

The older children will be bringing home the basis for a family agreement to establish ground rules and consequences of these rules within your household. If children have helped to establish the rules and have been involved in agreeing the consequences in advance, they are more likely to follow them.  Family agreements are available at Childnet International.  For younger children (3-7), Childnet have developed resources based around ‘Smartie the Penguin’.

Don’t forget to have a look at Simon’s social media pages NCCcybersafe on twitter and ncccybersafe on instagram for the latest updates and tips.


Posted in Online safety.

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