Children today have embraced new technologies as a source of information, education and entertainment.
The use of digital technology has been completely normalized by this generation, and it is now fully integrated into their daily lives.
Children and young people are using technology in new and exciting ways, enhancing and enriching their lives with the many tools on offer.
With the advent of Web 2.0 technologies (web based technologies that emphasize online collaboration and sharing among users), young people are no longer passive recipients of online information, but are increasingly interacting directly within a digital landscape.
In their exploration of these technologies, young people are not only developing their ICT skills, but also a whole host of ‘softer’ skills – creativity, communication and networking skills, for example – which will be much in demand by the employers of the future.
Children are increasingly referred to as ‘digital natives’: citizens born into a digital world, who grow up surrounded by and emerged in the technology and tools of the digital age.
Their confidence and skills in using this technology is typically high, but their knowledge and awareness of the inherent issues, risks and dangers is usually very low.
Children and young people need to be empowered to keep themselves safe – this isn’t just a top down approach. Children will be children – pushing boundaries and taking risks. At a public swimming pool we have gates, put up signs, have lifeguards and shallow ends, but we also teach children how to swim.
Do you know how to keep your children safe? Do your children know how to keep safe?
You will find some documents and links below to help you to broaden your understanding and ensure that your children can use the Internet safely while at home.