Thursday, July 03, 2008

A safe site for kids

It is the first week of school holidays in Victoria at the moment and I should be lying on a beach somewhere warm or at the very least taking it easy on my couch at home watching Family Guy.
Instead I am filling in some time before 12 midnight when I meet with a group of other interested educators who are training to be mediators for SuperClubsPlus au.
SCP is a website designed especially for kids between the ages of 6 and 12. Kids can create their own home pages, participate in online forums, join webrings and email other members. To me it's very much like a kids version of a ning. A social networking site for kids.
But what makes this more effective than others? Well what is unique about this site is that whenever the site is open, it is always managed by a trained mediator. "All communication between members is filtered automatically to prevent inappropriate language and content, cyberbullying, unwanted flirting and grooming. "
All communications are also monitored by teachers and by highly-skilled, professional mediators. who supervise every email, every forum post, every image upload to ensure that it is appropriate and safe. Students are only able to join through a school so their identity is validated to ensure that there is no chance of an older person impersonating a child.
Check out what some teachers who are already using it say,
Tonight I'm looking forward to seeing and watching what students are doing in the UK when they are online.
Should be fun.


Cana said...

Thank you very much for introducing the safe website for kids. There are really a lot of unsafe websites there for kids.

Anne said...

I agree that there are certainly a lot of unsafe sites out there that are deemed to be safe for children. The dilemma of course is that often parents,teachers and kids believe that just because a site says it is safe, it is so. And we know that it is not. But I think that there has to be a balance between allowing students to interact only on sites that we know are safe and educating our students to learn how to recognise grooming, bullying and other dangerous behaviour. We can't stop children from going to sites unless we turn the computer off completely and unfortunately this is clearly becoming less of an option as we rely more and more on the internet.

Cana said...

Yes, teaching kids how to know what kinds of websites are right for them is even more important.