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This is where the week 1 discussion will take place. Please respond to the questions by adding a comment below. The questions have been highlighted for your convenience. 


Keeping young learners safe online is a big responsibility for teachers. While we're teaching language, we also want to model good digital citizenship and safety habits. We also want to shield our students from inappropriate online behavior.



Step 1: Become familiar with online safety


  1. Watch one (or both of these short videos): Brain Pop Jr. Internet Safety or Common Sense with Phineas and Ferb. Feel free to browse both pages for quizzes and additional information about cyber safety.


  1. Answer these questions in the comments below:
  • How can we keep our students safe online?
  • What do you do to keep your students safe? (If you already work with students online)
  • What will you do in the future? (If you aren't currently working online with young learners)

Additional optional readings:

Generation Safe
This website includes a LOT of information, and an entire curriculum for teaching cyber safety and digital literacy. If you have time, check out the videos in the Google Literacy Tour. Even though we won't be doing anything with this site during our session, it's such a comprehensive resource we wanted to include it in our links.

Internet Safety for Kids
This short blog post by Jennifer Verschoor includes some great games to help children learn about online safety.


This is a great video which has a story that we found very powerful 

Step 2: Learn about Creative Commons licenses

Digital Storytelling often involves images, and part of digital citizenship is responsible use of online images. We want students to learn to respect copyright, and to identify where they found images. Creative Common licensing has become a simple way for people to define how their images (and other works) can be used.

  1. Watch this slide show explaining Creative Commons. Generally, permission to use images ranges from pictures that are in the public domain (anyone can use them) to images that are copyright and require permission to use. Creative Commons licenses grant permission in advance. All Creative Commons licenses require attribution (meaning you have to credit the person who shared the image).


  1. Explore various licenses by doing an online image search. Go to the Flickr Advanced Search page. (Flickr.com --> click on search --> click on advanced search --> enter a keyword, like "animals", scroll down and tick the box that says "search only in Creative Commons-licensed content"). Click on an image and then on the image page click on the license. What are the restrictions? How can you use the image?


  1. Explore resources for images that are either public domain or Creative Common license:
  • Wikimedia Commons (4 million images in the public domain)
  • Free Images (6000 stock photos, and they require you to credit them as the source)
  • World Images (80,000 photos from the California State University IMAGE project, under a non-commercial  CC license)
  • ELT Pics (Images taken by teachers for teachers, collected via Twitter and stored on Flickr, under a non-commercial CC license)
  • PhotoPin (a search engine that finds Creative Commons images)
  • Wylio- Search engine for CC images for bloggers
  • PhotoeXpress- lengthy registration process but you get 10 free quality stock images a day with a search engine and you don't have to attribute.
  • CCMixter.org- Great songs, music that is Creative Commons! Just give attribution
  • FreeSound- Free sound files and clips for use!
  • Soundzabound- Claims to be the ONLY royalty free music library which meets all the licensing and technology requirements needed for education!


Find many more resources in our LiveBinder! Just click the tabs and browse! We update this each week!


  1. Do you have a favorite site for images or did you discover a great site while browsing? Please share the link in our Edmodo group so we can add it to our resources? How about music? We aren't going to be focusing on it, but online music clips face the same copyright issues as images do. Have you found good sites with Creative Commons-licensed music? Please share!



Comments (Show all 78)

Shelly S. Terrell said

at 9:11 am on Jan 17, 2013

Eileen, you make a great point in saying we have to give them the perspectives and info then trust them to go on their journey at least equipped with the tools that they will be more safe and aware. We cannot always and most of the time will not be around when our students use technology; therefore, our main role is to support them when we can, make them aware, give them opportunities to think about what choices they would make when presented with various safety issues, and provide them with tips and advice.

MarijanaS said

at 9:57 am on Jan 17, 2013

Thank you Shelly for the link! It will be useful.

mario said

at 11:19 am on Jan 17, 2013

It is highly illuminating to read the opinions above. I think that parents and teachers should tell their kids/students about possible dangers and Intenet tips before accessing the web. Learners should be encouraged to use reliable web tools and content pages which could fasciliate the completion of their tasks and avoid pages which lack content and data. Talks about safety rules should be delivered by teachers and parents such as blocking unreliable or unfriendly users; using the right settings to make a personal account like Facebook, for instance, more private. Not to mention the refusal of strangers in indicidual accounts to avoid abuse and unfriendly interactions-

Maria Bossa said

at 12:22 pm on Jan 17, 2013

Hi! It's really interesting having watched the videos and read the comments. I entirely agree with most of the comments. We, teachers, parents - grown-ups - have the whole world in our hands so as to check what our kids are using and watching. Sometimes young learners don't see the importance of being safe or think nothing will happen to them... it's there when we have to "lead the way" and show them this kind of material.

mariaa_aponte said

at 2:15 pm on Jan 30, 2013

very true and very important

Sanja Bozinovic said

at 3:13 pm on Jan 17, 2013

How can we keep our students safe online? What do I do as a teacher?
My students are 10-14 years old. This is what I do:
1 Students learn to introduce themselves:
- first names only
-no portrait photos - if they want a personalized picture to represent their comments in a discussion, they can choose a picture they like or create an avatar picture)

2 I constantly remind them about the importance of keeping the information about their passwords to themselves.

3 I carefully choose webpages to use with students. I only recommend the pages safe for kids.

4 I try to teach students to evaluate pages they visit when looking for information. This is the most difficult part and I don't think teachers can do it without a lot of help from parents.

5 I respect copyright and give credit to the authors. I teach about copyright and plagiarism.

6 I involve parents. Teachers can't be the only responsible for children. There are “Parent permission“ forms to be signed and I encourage them to contact me and take interest in their children's work.

Of course, students often forget about all the above mentioned important things, but I keep reminding, teaching and setting a good example.

Eva said

at 3:51 pm on Jan 17, 2013

Great points Sanja, thanks for your contribution.

Marisa Constantinides said

at 7:03 pm on Jan 17, 2013

Agree with Eva, great advice, dear Sanja.

mariaa_aponte said

at 2:16 pm on Jan 30, 2013

You have pointed out very important issues specially for young learners

Marisa Constantinides said

at 7:04 pm on Jan 17, 2013

As many of you have so rightly pointed out, the role of parents is crucual. Can you add your ideas here about how you educate the parents?

Marisa Constantinides said

at 7:10 pm on Jan 17, 2013

Shelly's slide presentation is a great starting point please review it http://www.slideshare.net/ShellTerrell/getting-parents-on-board-with-technology-in-the-classroom and think of any other ideas; for example how to make parents aware of the dangers and how to show them some of the results of being indifferent or unaware

GeorgiaElt said

at 8:15 pm on Jan 17, 2013

I always try to explain my students how important it is not to give out personal information on the internet and not to make friends that they do not know.I usually illustrate them through examples and I ask them quite often if anything "strange" has happened in their online communities.
However, parents is the biggest problem as they are not aware of the dangers and most of them they do not know how to help their kids use the internet in a smart way. To my mind it is crucial that we, teachers start teaching first parents and then children,

Maria Rita said

at 7:03 am on Jan 18, 2013

Hi everybody,

I have watched the two videos and read some of the comments and I admit I agree with most of them both as a teacher and as a mother.

As far as my experience is concerned, I started using a class blog and Edmodo a couple of years ago. I teach English to 10-14 year-old students. The first things I asked my student is not to use photographs; instead we tried a website to create cartoon avatars. Then I asked them not to give personal information, such as address, telephone numbers, etc. Unfortunately, even if at school there are specific programmes for teaching kids internet safety (with experts from the national internet police authority), many of them still use Facebook with lots of pictures and tags with full name and lots of personal information.
This year I am in a new school and my students have never used Edmodo (even if most of them and their parents are on Facebook). It took me a couple of months to have my project of using Edmodo in my classes get approved by the school principal, but I'm going to start next week. I'm going to ask for parents' permissions and then I will teach the kids how to use Edmodo. In my letter to parents I explained the rules the students will have to follow to be part of the virtual class, but I know I will have to give a lot of extra explanations. Sometimes the parents who are afraid of the use of Internet in school activities don't know what their kids already do with their smartphones in their free time.

LaQuita Denson said

at 6:14 pm on Jan 18, 2013

I like the idea of using cartoon avatars instead of photos.

Lucia said

at 6:20 pm on Jan 18, 2013

Hi everyone,

After watching the videos and reading some info, I have come to the realization that things should never be taken for granted. Even though we might assume many facts about our kids, since they are more skilled than us, digitally speaking, we should always incorporate our adult perspective. In my opinion, the best way to keep our kids or students safe is by speaking to them constantly on this subject matter, and also becoming role models for them. We can block sites or search engines, but it goes far beyond that. Anyway, giving them certain specific, to-the-point tips should be very helpful, such as using avatars instead of uploading a picture of themselves, and never reveal their passwords to anyone, not even their best frinds!!! (which is hard to get). As teachers, using games that deal with internet safety is a good idea, thus helping them become skilled in the area. I'm not currently working with kids, but I do work with trainee teachers that work with them, so I think it would be a great idea for the future to include some content on internet safety in the ICT unit of my seminar. So, I insist, I still think that the best idea is to make children aware of online dangers, talk to them and explain the facts with games and examples.

Shelly S. Terrell said

at 6:56 pm on Jan 18, 2013

Here are more cybersafety resources, presentations and articles http://fuse711.edublogs.org/cyber-safety/

Bonnie Blagojevic said

at 7:57 pm on Jan 18, 2013

While not in the classroom currently, am also very interested in/doing work connected with preschool/K aged children and technology use. Agree with the points others have raised, that it is very important to have conversations with families with young children that provide resources not only about Internet Safety, but also media "diet" and balance. I enjoyed viewing the video examples shared and am also glad to know of additional resources suitable for sharing with parents of young children, so am glad these are being collected/organized.
Common Sense Media has a lot of information and resources on not only Internet safety
http://www.commonsensemedia.org/advice-for-parents/internet-safety but media use generally. Wondering if they will create some curriculum toolkits such as these http://www.commonsensemedia.org/educators/curriculum/grades-k-2 that include suggestions/considerations for preschool aged children.

The National Association for the Education of Young Children Technology & Young Children Interest Forum website has some links about Internet Safety http://www.techandyoungchildren.org/home.html#internet that might prove interesting to explore.

Eva said

at 10:26 am on Jan 19, 2013

Thanks for the links Bonnie.

Tanitateacher said

at 1:59 am on Jan 19, 2013

I do agree with an Internet safety . We should inform our students about it and tell their parents too/Because sometimes parents don't know how to tell their children aboit safety.

Jose Rodriguez said

at 12:39 pm on Jan 19, 2013

Hey everyone,
An important part of keeping our kids safe is modeling these skills and strategies to our students. As a general rule, I have my students use first name only, I tend to use text more than images and try to stay away from video recording of my students, at least when the students are posting. I make sure to use services that moderate student posts and comments. I love to use kidblog as my blogging platform and edmodo in a closed classroom. Well those are my tips, and yours?

Aniko Almasi said

at 3:46 pm on Jan 19, 2013


I am still trying to catch up with such a wealth of things going on in this course so I will leave a comment here (even if I am not sure anybody will come back here)
I have managed to see only one of the videos - the one with Brain POP. However I found one on Youtube from Common SenseMedia which I liked, I think it is nice to have real kids talk about internet safety. here is the link http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gd520wZZGDE
I especially like Rule 5 and 6. Rule #5 is the Golden Rule> if you don`t want something done to you, don`t do it to others. #6 is even more sensible:) - don`t spend all your time looking at a screen, get a life!
Otherwise I strongly agree with Lucia and Jose and thanks Bonnie for the great links!!

Diane Nielsen said

at 4:57 pm on Jan 19, 2013

Thanks for the wealth of wonderful resources from the moderators and others related to internet safely. I prepare future teachers and teachers currently in the classroom so the resources and ideas of all will be very helpful. I particularly got to thinking about the the point raised by several about working with parents. If you have not viewed Shelly's slideshow, I would encourage you to do so. It raised important issues about interacting with parent such as engaging them in well-planned workshop activities and use of the tools (not just telling them). Shelly, is the “Acceptable Use Policy” that starts on page 33 something we can access? It looked like website address along the side of the page, but I could not read it. I would like to engage my students (future and current teachers) in a discussion of internet safety with attention to partnering with parents, something I have not discussed in any detail to this point in class. Thanks again, all!

Diane Nielsen said

at 5:01 pm on Jan 19, 2013

Marisa, I think this is a great idea and one I want to use with my preservice teachers. It also got me to thinking that we could have children use the tools to teach younger children about internet safety. They could work in small groups. I think when kids are the "teachers" they learn so much themselves.

Carol Mayo said

at 7:03 pm on Jan 19, 2013

I am so glad you take an active role. Too often, as seen in the one video above, computers are in their bedrooms and there is no supervision and no discussion.

Elizabeth Slifer said

at 10:42 am on Jan 20, 2013

When our grandsons were younger, we placed the computer in the kitchen/dining room area so that all are aware of what is on the screen. You do have to keep these conversations ongoing about safety and netiquette.

Carol Mayo said

at 7:10 pm on Jan 19, 2013

One of my pet peeves has nothing to do with the Internet, but is still a way for predators to stalk children. In the US (don't know if common in other counties) people have little families on their back window of their car so you know if there is a dad, mom, and children. This gives away too much information to others. Also families love to have the picture of the sport or activity that their child is involved in with their name (football with Chad #14 or megaphone with Shelly). Gives out way too much information so people can see and come up and start a conversation with "private" information that is not private.

Aniko Almasi said

at 6:09 am on Jan 20, 2013

If we are talking about internet safety I'd like to ask you if it is safe to sign up to different sites using one's Facebook account - it seems so much easier and faster than to go through the registration process. What do you think?

Eva said

at 6:22 am on Jan 20, 2013

Well, yes you are right it seems much more easier but I'd prefer not to do so. Because once you have done that, you share your FB profile with the other sites and people can see whatever you post even if you don't want to do all the time.

TeresaD said

at 7:52 am on Jan 20, 2013

Thank you for the links to videos on internet safety. I had my family watch them. My husband I and gave simple tablets to our children for Christmas and we are regretting it because of the issues surrounding monitoring activity and limiting time that the kids spend on them. All the information out there on the web is overwhelming and I want to keep up with my kids, but I sometimes feel like it is an impossible task.

Elizabeth Slifer said

at 10:40 am on Jan 20, 2013

I agree about educating them on safety. We also have to keep ourselves aware of where they are traveling on the internet, too. I think I am watching my whole class but one or two are off on a site that I don't approve. This is trying! Any ideas?

IvanASU said

at 2:18 pm on Jan 30, 2013

block certain websites for them that way you will keep them on track and also they will be safe

elenargy@... said

at 10:58 am on Jan 20, 2013

How I protect my students?
My students are 15-18 years old. I did a survey and we played a game with cards to find out about their knowledge and feelings on online safety. Most of them know the rules but they don't always keep them. So my job is to constantly inform them on the dangers and on the other hand use the internet for pedagogiacal reasons. For example in the school blog they know we should post only group photos and I get the written permission of their parents. So I try to guide them in the right use of networking. Netiquette is also important and we discuss about it.

jeela gokmen said

at 2:18 pm on Jan 20, 2013

I just watched Shelly's presentation for parents. I think it's valuable for the parents. I current teach students who do not have access to technology at school, only at home. We talk to the children generally about not playing too many computer games, but not about how to use the technology properly. Parents' education would be the best answer for our age group.
Another aspect of 'acceptable use' is remembering parents are also setting an example for how to use technology. Children will learn from their parents example. If parents are crossing boundaries with privacy and or harassment, children will grow up to do the same.

Heather Davis said

at 4:30 pm on Jan 20, 2013

Hi, I am not in the classroom full-time anymore but I do spend time with students and discussing with teachers. Online safety is so important and I was very particular when I talked to my students (usually grades 3 or 4) about the importance of online safety. They were trained to NEVER use their real last name or their real address. There were times that they did not put their real birthday in either often they would use my birthday.

When it came to their last name I gave them a choice to:
1) given them the opportunity to make up a last name but I had to approve it
2) use my last name - I got this idea from another teacher somewhere (sorry don't know where) that she was more comfortable doing that method. I thought it had definite possibilities.
3) this was one that I chose quite often especially when working with a larger group of classes and that was use our classname/grade level as their last name. For example my class last year was Year 4A. That would become their last name.

Internet safety is very important to revisit several times a year just to review. Having older students create a video or some sort of digital format (not powerpoint) for younger students. A way this could be done is Grade 5 makes the video for Grade 4, Grade 4 for Grade 3, Grade 3 for Grade 2 and if you want to Grade 2 for Grade 1 though at my present school Elementary is Grades 2-5. An advantage of this approach is that every student must actually teach about internet safety to another grade. They must think through their plan, make it understandable to the age group they are going to be sharing with and it makes the teach aware as far as assessment who has developed the understanding. Also, creating something for parents is also another approach.

I have always felt that if we start at the younger grades and work our way up the same way we do with academic subjects we will have a strong foundation.

The resources that have been shared are excellent.

Eva said

at 9:52 am on Jan 21, 2013

Thanks for sharing these great tips. I agree that we should revisit the safety issue.

florenciaviale01@... said

at 9:48 pm on Jan 22, 2013

The digital era is ever changing...and probably while overconcerned about catching up we fail to pause and reflect upon the fact that we and our students are being exposed to the world. Those who are here have the burning desire to keep learning in order to spice up our lessons but, as we spend endless ours doing so...there are others, less altruist, ready to pervert what we do or who we are. I agree with yuo all that it is a must to discuss these issues in class and help our teens care about themselves in this new environment.

stellamso said

at 4:37 pm on Jan 25, 2013

Hello dear collegues,
I'm a little behind since I haven't been able to read browse the platform so far. Anyway, today I've been trying to catch up.
I've taken down notes on your greta ideas on internet safety. I must admit that I personally don't pay much attention to it. However, after this deep analysis I've gatthered plenty of ideas.
I agree with one of the posts above: the language of some videos may be a bit harsh for young students, therefore, making them crete their own "safety rule list" seems to be a great idea.
I'll go on wit something else!
thanx for sharing your views!!
stella :-)

IvanASU said

at 2:09 pm on Jan 30, 2013

How can we keep our students safe online?
You have to keep an eye on them and watch them closely when they are working. Also, you can have your setttings just for the students to be able to do research and study.
What do you do to keep your students safe?
You need to set up their computers that way the students are not able to browse too much outside their research. It is very important that setting such as chat rooms and similar places are disabled to them.
What will you do in the future?
I will keep a very tight security during their work time in the computer. It is very important to try to keep them focus and have just the essentials for them to work.
Sorry, I haven't being able to catch up but will do it for now on.

mariaa_aponte said

at 2:14 pm on Jan 30, 2013

It is very difficult to watch over the children all the time when they are doing research or working online. But, it is very important that we keep them on task. Therefore, to my experience the best choice is always to have them just doing research nothing else such as chatting or browsing other websites, downloading music or videos. Teachers should be aware of how to handle the settings for the students that way they are going to work just on their homework in a safe environment. We should revise the settings periodically.

IvanASU said

at 2:19 pm on Jan 30, 2013

Good I share your opinion

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