Aug 01, 2019 2019-08-01
A few years ago, Google launched its “Be Internet Awesome” curriculum, which focused on teaching children about online safety. This year the company has added a new component to its campaign: media literacy. Developed in partnership with the Net Safety Collaborative, the new program includes play-to-learn activities that help educate youth about how to spot disinformation, such as fake URLs or misleading headlines. The curriculum includes “Don’t Fall for Fake” activities centered on teaching children the critical thinking skills needed to differentiate between credible and noncredible news sources (for example) and ways to spot a bad URL. Other media literacy activities include “Share with Care,” teaching children how to maintain a positive online reputation, and “It’s Cool to Be Kind,” addressing online harassment. In addition, Google has partnered nationwide with the YMCA to help families talk with their children about topics such as social media, cyberbullying, and disinformation. The new “Be Internet Awesome” curriculum” is aimed mostly at seven- to twelve-year-olds, and is available free of charge to interested family members and educators.