Sunday, June 11, 2017

Be Internet Awesome....An Amazing New Program From Google!

Our friends at Google made an awesome announcement last week!  

As one of the early pilot testers for this project, I couldn't be more excited for this news too.  

Google has launched a new program called Be Internet Awesome!  And let me tell you... it does just that!  

As Google shared, 

Be Internet Awesome is a multifaceted program designed to teach kids how to be safe and confident explorers of the online world.

Being Internet Awesome means 5 things:

  • Be Internet Smart: Share with care (Being mindful of one’s online reputation)
  • Be Internet Alert: Don’t fall for fake (Avoiding phishing and scams)
  • Be Internet Strong: Secure your secrets (Privacy and Security)
  • Be Internet Kind: It's cool to be kind (Dealing with and avoiding online harassment)
  • Be Internet Brave: When in doubt, talk it out (Reporting inappropriate content)
Google worked with the Family Online Safety Institute, ConnectSafely and iKeepSafe to build a solution that aims to encourage parents, educators and kids alike to exhibit all the traits that comprise “Awesome” online.

The program has also been awarded the Seal of Alignment by the International Society for Technology in Education.
Here are some of the highlights:

  • Interland. As more young users come online, we aim to help make digital safety knowledge as accessible as possible. That’s why we built Interland, a free, adventure-packed web-based game that lets kids put fundamental lessons of digital safety into practice in a way they enjoy learning.

  • The Be Internet Awesome Curriculum. We worked with the iKeepSafe Coalition to develop a lesson plan for educators to use in schools and relay these pillars. We tested these in schools across the country – from New York, to Eminence, Kentucky, to Des Plaines, Illinois and more.
  • The Be Internet Awesome Challenge and Resources for Parents. Parents can find tips on the program homepage, as well as a downloadable family pledge that outlines ways to be “Internet Awesome” that the whole family can commit to. To further inspire parents to discuss digital safety with their families, we also teamed up with a group of creators to launch the Be Internet Awesome Challenge, a video series that celebrates being your best self online. Popular creators, including the John Green (author of The Fault in Our Stars), have recorded messages about Be Internet Awesome’s key lessons so families can start and sustain these conversations not just in the classroom but at home, too.
This program will add to our existing efforts such as the Online Safety Roadshow and resources like the Google Safety Center, and encourage kids, parents and educators to practice being Internet Awesome by being smart, alert, strong, kind and brave online.

These resources are for everyone, and are designed to best serve families, educators and kids. Interland has been particularly well-received by kids ages 8-11, but can certainly be enjoyed by all ages.

All materials are free and openly available; no sign-in is required to access any part of Be Internet Awesome.

You can go to Be Internet Awesome here where you will find everything you need to get started.
And the Digital Safety Resources will be super helpful for the classroom and home too.

I can't wait to see what you and your students or children think about Be Internet Awesome. This is just what we need to teach our young people how to be part of the online world.

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