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Safer Internet Day 2024: Navigating and inspiring change online

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Two primary school students in their computer science lesson, working on a laptop together.

As we immerse ourselves in the digital age, creating a secure online environment for young people has never been more important. That’s why Safer Internet Day (February 6) is so significant to primary teachers in championing the safe and positive use of digital technology.

The initiative’s purpose lies in raising awareness around the potential risks children might encounter, as well as emphasising the need for a collective effort from parents, teachers, and local communities.

How to get involved

As a teacher there are various ways in which you can get involved in Safer Internet Day.

The first step you can take is to raise awareness! Talk to your colleagues, plan how you will get involved with the day, and set aside some time to introduce safer and better internet activities and resources.

You can also download free resources on the day from the UK Safer Internet Centre, accessible here. These include engaging activities designed to support teachers in delivering messages about the campaign theme of change online. There are also some short films that you can use on the day that can be found here.

In addition to the resources provided by the UK Safer Internet Centre, other organisations such as Tech She Can are presenting a free online assembly for Safer Internet day, with BBC Teach also providing a live assembly.

These resources help to collectively empower schools and parents alike to guide the younger generation in navigating the digital realm responsibly, ensuring a safer and more secure online future.

While Safer Internet Day is an excellent opportunity to emphasise online safety, it's important that we realise that safeguarding our students in the digital world is an ongoing responsibility for us as teachers.

How you can prioritise online safety in the classroom:

The NCCE offer a range of CPD courses and lesson units through the Teach Computing Curriculum that can bring the most up-to-date and accessible sources of learning support to your attention.

Online safety through primary computing (short course)

By the end of this course, you will be able to:

  • identify where online safety fits within the computing and wider curriculum
  • engage with evidence based best practice and resources supporting online safety
  • develop confidence in the schools' approach to online safety by ensuring teaching is well-informed and up-to-date

Lesson 6 – Using a computer responsibly

This lesson within the KS1 curriculum shows you how to use computers safety. Your students will learn to:

  • identify rules to keep them safe and healthy when using technology in and beyond the home
  • give examples of some of these rules
  • discuss how they benefit from these rules

How will you inspire your class this Safer Internet Day?

Let us know by sharing your images with us @WeAreComputing on social media!

About the author

Sarah Zaman is a Primary Computing and Cyber Security Specialist at the National Centre for Computing Education.