Working with NetSmartz, the Northwestern District Attorney’s Office has empowered children to teach each other about Internet safety. Director of Community Education and Outreach, Cynthia Boyle, shares about their work and what can happen when adults take a step back.
In Massachusetts, Clicky has taken on some additional duties: working with high school students to teach first and second graders how to be safer online. Members of the 2008-2009 Youth Advisory Board (YAB), which consists of high school students from local schools, decided it was time for them to take an active role in helping teach basic Internet safety to the youngest members of their communities.
In addition to teaching with Clicky, YAB members also provide the first and second graders with some hands-on classroom projects that reinforce the safety messages they learned from Clicky. While in the classrooms, YAB members lead discussions with the first and second graders about who a trusted adult is and create a list of the students’ answers. Then, each student is given a quilt square and asked to draw a picture of their trusted adult.
When the students are finished with their drawings, YAB members tie the squares together creating a Quilt of Trusted Adults. Each class keeps their quilt to hang in their classroom for the rest of the school year. Finally, an awards ceremony is held, where the YAB members give each student a Clicky certificate of completion and an activity book to take home.
Through teaching lessons about Internet safety, the YAB members have those concepts reinforced in their own lives. It is just more one step that our community is taking towards helping every child stay safer online.