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Tips & Advice - Internet Safety


Nowadays young children are using technology more and more. Whether it is a phone, tablet, laptop or watching programmes, the online world is booming. A recent report found that some 45% of 3- to 4-year-olds use YouTube, and 52% of 3- to 4-year-olds go online for an average of almost nine hours per week. Although ICT lessons are taught to older children, it is important that young children know the importance of staying safe online and how to use technology in a safe way.

But how do you know how to keep your children safe online? And how can you ensure that you're up to date and have appropriate knowledge and understanding of the online world?

Here are a few tips to help you learn how to keep your children safe.

  • Explore together-Talk to your child about what the internet is and explore it together so you can show them all the great fun and educational things they can do.

  • Put yourself in control- Install parental controls on your home broadband. Most Internet-enabled devices also allow you to set parental controls so you can monitor your child’s activity online.

  • Use passwords- Keep your devices out of reach and set passwords on all your internet-enabled devices and don’t share them. Then you’ll know when and where your child is accessing the internet. You can also make sure they’re not making additional purchases when they’re playing games or using apps.

  • Search safely- Use safe search engines such as Swiggle or Kids-search. You can save time by adding these to your ‘Favourites’. Safe search settings can also be activated on Google and other search engines, as well as YouTube.

  • Be involved- Encourage them to use devices in a communal area like the lounge or kitchen so you can keep an eye on how they’re using the internet and also share in their enjoyment.

  • Manage access- Set your homepage to a child-friendly site like CBeebies and create a user account for your child on the family computer or device which only allows access to sites you’ve chosen.

  • Help them learn through games- You can choose safe, fun and educational online games to play with your child and that you’ll be confident about them exploring. You can find good free of charge examples from Cbeebies and companies like Disney Junior, Nick Jr and Fisher Price.

  • Set boundaries- It’s never too early to start setting boundaries. Set some rules about how long your child can spend online.

Here are some useful websites that offer more tips an advice for making sure your children stay safe online:

Great books to support the transition:

Chicken Clicking by Jeanne Willis and Tony Ross

Little Red Riding Hood for the iPad generation. This is the perfect book for teaching Children how to stay safe online.

Troll stinks by Jeanne Willis and Tony Ross

A great book to introduce Internet safety.

Once Upon A Time Online by David Bedford

Find out what happens when our favourite fairy time characters receive a laptop and learn a lesson in online safety.

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