This last year of elementary school will be a year of huge growth for your child. Not only academically, but also emotionally and socially. Since technology has become such an integral part of our everyday lives, it is crucial that the lessons we teach translate over to students’ digital lives as well. Luckily, there are so many resources out there to help guide us.
In Enrichment, we will begin this unit by completing lessons from Common Sense Media. These lessons will address password security, cyber bullying, managing our digital footprint, safe searching, and more. Since we have a 1:1 ratio for iPads to students, all students will complete these lessons before using technology independently.
In addition to the in-class lessons, I encourage you (and all parents/guardians/older siblings in your household) to sit down with your child and discuss your family expectations around technology use at home. To help begin these discussions, feel free to look through the Google Safety Center and the Family Online Safety Institute. Both have numerous articles geared toward specific age groups and topics. A few topics that are usually relevant for many students in 5th grade include safer gaming, Youtube videos, and being a “good friend” online.
The Internet, and technology overall, continue to change and enhance the ways in which we live and learn. However, it is not without it’s challenges and dangers. My main goal for your child’s online safety and security is an open line of communication between you and your child about what they are doing online. This way, when your child is faced with a tough decision or challenge, they will know exactly who they can go to for help and guidance.
So where do we start with this long and rapidly changing journey? The 7 Steps to Good Digital Parenting is a great resource to begin with. Start with step one and take each step at a pace that is comfortable for your family’s needs.
I look forward to being a part of this journey with you and your child!