Warn pupils of dangers of web

25th July 2003 at 01:00
It is hard for parents who lack computer skills to give children advice about the dangers of emails, chat rooms and the internet. However, there is a simple way to make sure children are more aware.

In primary school, before access to school computers is offered and classes are given user names and passwords - why not spend time discussing the potential dangers? Then, each term before pupils go on-line, five-minute reminders could be introduced to make sure no one has forgotten the advice.

Just because schools restrict website access, this doesn't mean children don't need the advice, as home computer use is so extensive.

According to my 12-year-old, he has never discussed this topic at primary or secondary level, but it would fit in well with any teaching about health and safety issues, which are hopefully already covered.

On teacher-training courses, potential primary school teachers should also make sure they add this aspect to lesson plans. In this way all children will be more prepared.

Jackie Sherman The Orchard Radley Road Abingdon, Oxfordshire

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