IMPORTANT ONLINE SAFETY INFORMATION
We wanted to make you aware of some concerns that have been raised recently in the media regarding some popular online games accessed by children.
Blaze and the Monster Machine
An unofficial APP based on the popular children’s Nickelodeon television programme ‘Blaze and the Monster Machine’ has been removed by Google Play Stores due to complaints made by parents regarding its content. The game initially appears child friendly using the characters from the show. It then exposes the child to inappropriate content of a violent nature that the child can hear from a voiceover. Please see below link for more information;
This is another popular online game children play which states is suitable from age 8+ and one we know that a lot of children that attend our school access. The concerns raised surrounding this are with regards to the Chat Facility. Reports have been made involving children receiving inappropriate messages by strangers they do not know and then not telling their parents about them.
It is really important that we speak to our children about online safety and the importance of them speaking out if something happens they feel uncomfortable with. This is something we are continuously doing in school but it needs to also be followed through at home. It is important you know what your children access but also who can access them.
For more information on ROBLOX and how it works visit; https://www.net-aware.org.uk/networks/roblox/
In school we have been made aware of an inappropriate Sonic the Hedgehog game some children have been playing via You tube at home. The game is called Sonic Exe and when initially played appears like the usual Sonic game. After a very short time dead squirrels appear and Sonic has red hands and eyes (blood). There is a voice over whilst the game is played with lots of swearing and violent language.
Keeping up to date with what our children do online can be difficult which in turn presents a challenge to parents/ carers helping their children stay safe online. Please feel free to contact us regarding your child’s online safety, we - Family Workers alongside our ICT team would be more than happy to provide you with practical support and advice. We also have a Digital Safeguarding session for parents/carers (NO CHILDREN) on Wednesday 21st February 6-7pm run by Bedfordshire Police. If you would like to come along please contact us on 725387 Option 2 or at; email@example.com to book a place.
Alternatively, the NSPCC and Thinkuknow provide information specifically for parents with regards to online safety (see links below) also, on the school website you will find a volume of supportive services you can access to help you to help keep your child safe online.
We are aware that it is extremely difficult to ‘police’ the internet and what our children are accessing all of the time, however please ensure you are taking an interest. Why not go through the list of ‘friends’ your child has on their games and talk about how many of these they actually know. So many children wear headsets when playing and are interacting with others, you may be able to hear what your child is saying but how do you know who is on the other end?
Please monitor your child’s online world as closely as you would when they are offline.
Kelly Davies and Lynda McPheat
Safety Settings for home devices
This is a really good site if you are unsure of what settings to use for your home devices. It has all the normal broadband suppliers and also covers phones and tablets.
Can you name all of these icons?