Did you know? February 7th is recognized globally as Safer Internet Day.
Did you know? With so many days recognizing various events, organizations or people, this day may be under the radar for you. As a citizen of a global community, this one is worth keeping on your annual days to remember, if only as a trigger to think about how you can become safer on the internet.
This year’s theme – Be the change: Unite for a better internet!
My effort to be the change will revolve around awareness and action. I’m becoming more informed about resources available to educators, parents, and children in Canada to support internet safety. I’ll be doing an internet audit on February 7th to make changes to support my own internet safety and security. I’ll encourage and call for action by others across Canada (#SaferInternetDayCA) to take small steps to BE THE CHANGE and unite for a better internet.
Safer Internet Day? There’s an org for that!
The Canadian Centre for Child Protection is the supporting organization here in Canada. The Safer Internet Canada web site promotes this annual event. Free resources and lessons are available from this site as well as from the Safer Internet Day global website where a searchable collection of resources come in a variety of languages and topics. The Safer Internet Day Infographic provides a snapshot of this organization and how it is working to promote and bring awareness to some essential digital literacy topics. You can do your part to ‘be the change’ by following on Facebook and/or Twitter using #SID2017 and #SaferInternetDay. Unofficially I’ve started using the #SaferInternetDayCA since it’s not currently in use for any other purpose – setting a new trend for others to join into this conversation!
AWARENESS as Priority One
This is by no means an exhaustive set of resources, but ones that are available through the Canadian Centre for Child Protection website for FREE (and for educators, free without a hidden agenda or sign up is good!)
- The Door that’s not Locked – resources in both official languages, this site contains resources that are grade specific, free and downloadable including Internet safety tools, cell phone safety, personal boundaries and online games
- Kids in the Know – an interactive safety program for students from Kindergarten to Grade 9 including many free and downloadable safety tip sheets and resources when supporting student safety both online and offline
- Zoe & Molly Online – specifically for parents and educators working with students in Gr. 3-4 on the topic of online and personal safety. Free, downloadable comic book, Smart Board files and safety lessons are provided.
- What’s the Deal? for grade 7-8 and It is a Big Deal for grades 9-10 are two resources available to download with accompanying teaching guides to help families and educators respond to issues of cyberbullying, how to respond to unsafe situations online, relationships and identifying when to get help. Also available is the resource guide School and Family Approaches to Intervention and Prevention: Addressing Self/Peer Exploitation for those supporting youth in addressing incidents of self/peer exploitation.
- The National Cyber Security Centre in the UK provides infographics on topics of password security, cybersecurity, cyberattacks, BYOD and managing your information risks. These are worth a look for personal and organizational change to raise awareness in building a safer internet.
- Media Smarts Canada is a go-to site for all kinds of resources and supports for learning about media and digital literacies, not just for one day but year round! It’s a rich restore of information, research and lesson plans for teachers, parents and anyone who wants to learn more. The Helping Kids Make an Impact When They Witness Cyberbullying would be a great read as a Safer Internet Day action item.
ACTION as Priority Two
Here are some suggestions, from the many you may find when you start searching for safer internet strategies. Pick ONE actionable item to try on February 7th, 2017. Tweet about it using the #SID2017 and #SaferInternetDayCA hashtags. Post your actions to Safer Internet Day on Facebook. Take one step!
- Do an internet or digital identity audit. You may only get to step one, but a marathon is only completed by putting one foot in front of another. I’ve been through step one and now may ‘level up’ by analyzing my digital identity.
- Listen to Episode 73: A Safer, More Private Internet (Part 1), Tide Podcast produced by Doug Belshaw and Dia Barnes. Then take a look at the resources & links provided.
- Review passwords and password protection/storage options. Try this guide to password security. I don’t currently use a password management system but may look at this option – then there’s only one master key to rule them all.
- Read stuff from Me and My Shadow
- Tracking … So What? 7 Things We Know You’re Going to Say – debunking common arguments around data and privacy
- The 8 Day Data Detox – start cleaning up your digital life. While I’ve tried a self imposed digital detox before, and found the experience refreshing, this will have to wait until a later point in the year when my work schedule won’t suffer as a result of my withdrawal from all things digital.
That’s enough to get anyone started. Let’s make this an event that everyone is thinking about, talking about, acting on. It may not get the traction or reach of the #BellLetsTalk day, but it’s worth spreading the word and sharing the conversations about this topic with each other and with our children.
Together we can BE THE CHANGE and UNITE for a BETTER INTERNET!
Hey, U THERE? What will you do on February 7th?