TikTok has recently tightened its privacy controls for under 16’s. TikTok is a social media platform that lets you create, share and discover 60 second videos. You can use music and effects to enhance your videos and you can also browse other people’s videos and interact with them. TikTok’s age rating is 13+ so it is not recommended for children under 13 years of age.

Click the link for further information regarding how TikTok’s privacy controls have been improved:

Tiktok tightens privacy controls

This website provides expert support and practical tips to help children benefit from connected technology and the internet safely and smartly:
https://www.internetmatters.org
They also have a range of parent ‘How To’ guides. Here is the guide for ‘WhatsApp’ and a information on how to set parental controls on WhatsApp:
Here are some You Tube Help Guides to show you how to add restricted mode to your children’s devices:
Staying Safe Online
Sometimes there are films and clips on the internet that are nasty and can be traumatic if watched by children.  Please remind your child that if they see anything on social media or the internet that upsets them or if they are affected by what they’ve seen, to speak to their class teacher, a family member or another adult that they feel comfortable talking to. Here are some videos that help to keep your family safe online.
Pegi ratings
PEGI ratings are an indication of age related content and that even though a game looks fun if it has an 18 rating it should not be played by young people under that age.
For more advice on online gaming go to:

 

What parent and carers need to know about the new Playstation 5 and how to set it up safely:

Setting up the Playstation 5 safely

 

Online Gaming

Games are heading online now more than ever. Everything from Tetris to football games can be played online and against other human opponents rather than computer controlled opponents. Players can usually communicate with one another; perhaps using onscreen messaging which is typed during the game play or some games allow voice communication so that players can swap their thoughts freely via a headset whilst competing just like having a telephone conversation.

Today’s games consoles can be a great way to bring the family together. Whether it’s bowling on the Nintendo Wii or Fifa on the XBox, families can be involved in activity to develop communication and relationships. The very best gaming is safe gaming – which means games should be played responsibly.

The ideal way to ensure that your children and teenagers are playing the right games, and playing sensibly, is to take an active interest in what they are playing, whether your children play on games a PC, Xbox 360, Nintendo Wii or Sony PlayStation. Download a useful parent sheet to give you the low down on online gaming.

Top tips

  • Keep a clean machine: Before your children start playing online games, make sure that your computer has an activated security suite: a firewall, anti-spyware software, and anti-virus software.
  • Check the game rating: Checking for a game’s age rating on game packages, online or in some mobile app storefronts – is a great place to start in terms of gauging its age-appropriateness. Many games also have descriptions that detail exactly what type of content a parent would want to know about, along with specific examples.
  • Make passwords long and strong: Ensure your children have strong passwords for their gaming accounts. Passwords should be at least eight characters long and a mix of upper and lowercase letters and numbers and symbols.
  • Remain positively engaged: Let your kids know they can come to you if they feel uncomfortable when playing a game. Participate in the game with your kids.

Gaming and Addiction

Online gaming can be a fun way for kids to connect with others, but it’s important for them to understand the risks and know how to handle certain situations. Games foster creativity and interaction and can play an important role in social, physical and intellectual development.

Games often require children to obey rules and follow directions, thus increasing their capacity for self-discipline and autonomy. Games can also help to introduce newcomers to technology and foster interest in ICT.

Puzzles, adventures and quests offer opportunities for players to develop strategic thinking and problem-solving skills and of course they are FUN.

One of the issues of computer gaming is that young people can become addicted to the games that they play. Download a useful parent sheet to give you the low down on game addiction.

 

 

ICT in Schools Logo

ICT in schools have created a number of e-safety videos to help you keep your children safe online including using social networking sites, gaming and setting parental controls:

E-safety Videos for Parents

 

Be Internet Legends- Digital drop-ins for parents from Google and Parent Zone:

Google and Parent Zone are delighted to launch a series of digital drop-ins about the online world – on everything from Cyberbullying to Sharing Carefully.

Delivered on YouTube and led by Parent Zone’s experienced team, digital drop-ins take a 360° look at a specific topic, offering

  • practical strategies if you’re concerned
  • activities for families who just want to learn more
  • learning points from Be Internet Legends
  • signposting to other resources and games.

They are being held every day from Monday 12th October to Thursday 15th October from 4:30pm-5pm. Click this link, once directed to the web page choose your preferred date. Then click on the ‘Get Involved’ link to register: Digital Drop-ins

 

The Netflix checklist provides all the latest information on parental controls whilst showing you:

  • How to set up children’s accounts
  • How to add maturity ratings
  • How to block shows
  • How to lock profiles
  • How to turn autoplay on and off
  • How to access viewing history

The leaflet was created by SWGfL and UK Safer Internet Centre in collaboration with Netflix.

Netflix Checklist for Parents