Comments (5)

  1.' Tsana Plessius says:

    Listening to this blog is an eye-opener.  Bullying is intentional – and some students with special needs say / write / do things without that intent, so it is not necessarily bullying.

     I think that teachers and parents need to be SO aware of what is going on in the classroom, and outside of the classroom.  Parents need to be confident to look at their childrens devices, and ask "who is that?"  "how do you know them?" "what do you share with them and them with you?".   Telling parents it is okay to ask their child what they are doing on the computer, and teaching children to go to a trusted adult as soon as they have any concerns, is vital.  Parents also need to be confident to be able to go and talk with the school and teachers if they have any concerns. 

    Our school has an agreement that the child, the parents and the school sign, covering the use of the devices, how to care for them and what to do if anything "bad" happens while the student is online.  This sort of thing needs to be widely available to all schools.

    Thanks, Tsana

    (Glenbrae Primary School, Auckland)

  2. John Fenaughty says:

    Kia ora Tsana,

    I really appreciate your comments.

    You are right about the "intentional" aspect of bullying is a critical part of the definition. It is of course totally different if you do something harmful by accident, or if you do it on purpose – not neccessarily for the person at the receiving end, for whom it can still be equally as painful, but for what motivates the person doing that behaviour. Unintentional harm is also much easier to address for the target and the person doing that behaviour… 

    Helping teachers and parents to understand how these devices are used, and to have productive conversations with children and young people about them is also key. My sense is that as a young person gets older, there will neccessarily be more negotiation about what they will want to share. That said, a useful starting point for these conversations at all ages, can be regular scheduled points where adults seek to learn how the children and young people in their lives are using their devices at the moment… for instance which apps are their favourites this term, how do they work, what do they like about them, what do they dislike, how do they manage the dislikes… and this can lead to some co-constructed problem solving, or simply some shared joy/frustration. Sometimes it's just sharing frustrations that are helpful, without needing to jump into problem solving unless that is requested… :-)

    You are so right about parents and whānau being supported to share online concerns and opportunities with their schools/ECEs.. anything that prevents a learner from feeling safe, secure, and supported at school is serious. Schools want to do the best for their learners, and it's critical that they are informed if something outside of school is making the school unsafe or unsupportive for a learner – as this makes it difficult for quality learning to happen.

    Your school sounds like it's well on the way to meeting these issues head on. For schools who are needing agreements, the NetSafe website and kit can be useful… that has use-agreement templates. Even more exciting for me is the NetSafe kit for schools which extends past the use agreements to offer further approaches to supporting digital citizenship in schools too. You can find it here: 

    Ngā mihi nui, John

  3. The other thing that concerns me at the moment is the preteen use of restricted social media. I know for sure that many of of my students have their own, facebook, Instagram, twitter, google+ accounts, usually with parent permission or facilitation. I think we need to bring the parents on board with managing these (rule breaking) accounts so that students don't suffer instant shutdown (for being underage) or other, more damaging effects (bullying, grooming etc). Don't get me wrong, I do think that many of the sites restricted by US based legalities are very useful and part of many students' lives. I just think they need to know how to manage their digital footprint and online presence.

  4. Very timely as we move to full online delivery with our courses and greater online interaction with our students and they with each other. 

  5. Nichole Gully says:

    Kia noho tahi me tētahi kura kia whakamāorihia ētahi o ēnei rauemi nui whakaharahara kia tiria whānuitia. TKKM o te Whānau Tahi Board of Trustees

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