I was compensated for this post as a blogger who is part of the Forward Influence Network. As always my words and views are 100% my own.
As the month of October is coming to a close, I think it is important to remind ourselves that it is National Bullying Prevention Month. Let’s hope that we carry the message through every month of the year, because bullying, especially on the internet, is prevalent.
Wouldn’t it be nice if we all did our part to spread some kindness online. There is something about the ability to hide behind a computer screen that brings out the worst in some. Online bullying and hateful behavior is real, and it can cause real hurt and have devastating consequences.
Be Internet Awesome:
Be Internet Awesome (BIA) is Google’s free multifaceted program designed to teach kids the fundamentals of digital citizenship and safety, so they can explore the online world with confidence. You can find the program in both English and Spanish and consists of an ISTE standards aligned curriculum, ready-made Pear Decks for each lesson, Interland – an adventure-packed online game about digital safety and citizenship – and plenty of resources for educators and parents.
BIA will help families and students to learn how to make choices that disempower bullying behavior and create healthy, productive spaces to interact.
Some Important Facts About Bullying:
- 28% of students have experienced bullying personally.
- 71% of students have witnessed bullying directly.
- Only 20% – 30% of students notify adults about bullying.
- Over 50% of parents are concerned about their child being bullied.
If you are an educator, you should check out the teacher curriculum online. A family guide is coming soon, in the meantime, the Interland games covers each of the 5 areas for Internet awesomeness shown below. It will give you vocabulary and talking points to help you have family discussions that help build a strong foundation for your kids’ safe, successful use of the Internet. The ability to have honest and open-minded conversations with your kids is the most important tool to keep them safe online.
In the curriculum you will find helpful ways to open up family dialog that will help you encourage one another to step up and become “upstanders”. Upstanders are people who help the person being hurt when they see something hurtful happening, and help turn negative situations into positive ones.
You can play Interland with your kids and put your kindness skills to the test at g.co/KindKingdom, but don’t stop there. Learn more about how you can Be Internet Awesome at g.co/BeInternetAwesome and tell your kids’ teachers about the online curriculum so they can introduce these activities in the classroom.
I implore everyone to help make a positive difference and to start today by spreading kindness online. It is an easy thing to do, and it can make a real difference. Let me know how you are spreading online kindness in the comments. Together we can make the Internet a kinder place. Won’t you join me?