Having open honest discussions with your kids is one of the best ways to help keep them safe and responsible online and to help them talk about the challenges they may face spending time online. Sometimes it’s hard to bring up topics without sounding all ‘lecture-y’ and it isn’t long before the eyes start to glaze over and they are thinking about the next thing they are going to have to eat.
One way that works well is to show kids a short video on a topic. Let them watch it and ask them about it after, or better still watch it together. There are heaps of videos on youtube about all sorts of aspects of social media and technology, so find ones that you think may appeal to your kids.
I have put together a few different ones for different issues. Obviously some are more relevant to different ages, so have a look first to decide if this is something that might be appropriate for your child. Find out what they know, do they know how people in the videos could have handled things better? Would they know what to do if they saw these things happen to a friend? Or to themselves?
Megan’s Story – discusses the implication of photo sharing/sexting gone wrong.
Jigsaw – helping children understand what constitutes personal information. In Australia, if children are concerned they can contact the individual app as well as the helpline button on the ACMA website, and hopefully a trusted adult.
Photofail – highlights the importance of asking friends before you post photos online that may have negative ramifications.
Tagged is a short film about the effects of sexting and cyberbullying and the drama that can easily escalate out of control.
Matt thought he knew is about the importance of knowing exactly who you are talking to online and what happens when people aren’t who you think they are.
Bars and Melody’s first video on Britains Got Talent. These guys are just amazing and have gone on to do fabulous things on their anti-bullying crusade. I challenge you not to shed a tear!
Cyber bullying Virus examines the infectious nature of cyberbullying.
Anti Bullying – don’t be the bystander, stand up, stand strong and stand together
This Ted Talk on overcoming bullying is amazing. One for the older teens but another tear jerker!
This video on digital footprints from Common sense media talks about being safe, responsible and respectful with our online trail. Good for the younger kids.
Post Remorse looks at the embarrassing moments we post online that can get us in to trouble.
Oversharing – Another video produced by Microsoft examining how much sharing is too much?
What’s your story? – I love this winner of the Trend Micro “Whats your story?” comp from a few years ago. A great rap about making good decisions online and being positive and true to ourselves.
Teen Bullying experiences – a range of videos on the real life experiences of kids online as part of the Submit the Documentary website.
Everyone knows Sarah– a great one about those who know so much about you that probably shouldn’t
Look up is a parody of our obsessions with devices. It may be a rather negative portrayal of our lives, but it can be a good way to start a conversation and get our kids perspectives on the role of devices in our lives.
And heres one for the parents! Where is Klaus?
There are obviously thousands of videos on all sorts of topics associated with the online world, but I hope this gives you somewhere to start, to help yourself and your kids learn about whats our there and how you can minimise the risks.
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Wow Matts and Megan;s stories were very powerful, and both situations can happen so easily. I will be sharing these with my kids. Thanks
Yes Nat, they really do make you realise how easy things can get out of hand 🙁
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I was just discussing with my 8 year old today how she needed to check with me before using safari on her iPad, but she got the eye glaze thing. I’ll check out the clips instead.
We’ve all seen the eye glaze for many different reasons! So yes, sometimes we have to be a bit more creative when we want to get a message across.