Digital Wellbeing

Digital Wellbeing

Digital Wellbeing continues to be an important issue for schools, pupils and parents. At Bridgewater we are committed to ensuring that this is addressed to pupils routinely and regularly throughout the school year, whether this be within subject lessons, Personal Development sessions, or assemblies.

Our staff Esafety Group meets termly to look at how we can best continue to support Digital Wellbeing across the school, and our student Digital Leaders play a role in promoting this with other students also.

Bridgewater parents/carers also have access to the National Online Safety online resources including a training course for parents/carers. Click here for details and click here to read about our success in receiving NOS accreditation.

 

NEW ADDITION – w/c 16th May – Discord
Discord is a free app which allows users to communicate in real time via text, video or voice chat. Available on desktop and mobile devices, it was originally designed to help gamers cooperate – but has evolved into a more general networking platform for a range of online communities, discussing topics like TV series, music, Web3 and more. Discord is organised around closed groups, referred to as ‘servers’. To join a server, users must be invited or provided with a unique link. It’s a space for users to interact with friends, meet others with shared interests and collaborate in private online — but it’s also a place where young people can be exposed to risks if the right precautions aren’t taken. In this guide, you’ll find tips on a number of potential risks such as cyberbullying, predators and inappropriate content.
Discord

 

NEW ADDITION – w/c 28th March – Facebook
With 2.9 billion users, Facebook, owned by the recently rebranded Meta, is the world’s most popular social media platform. It encourages interaction with other people by (among other things) adding them as friends, reacting to or commenting on their content, sharing images and videos, posting status updates, joining groups and playing games. Facebook is free, and anyone over 13 can join – but with no age verification, younger children can easily create an account: it’s likely your child is already familiar with the platform, even if they don’t yet use it themselves. In this guide, you’ll find tips on a number of potential risks such as cyberbullying, strangers and the addictive nature of Facebook.
Facebook

 

NEW ADDITION – w/c 21st March – Phone Scams
In a three-month period during 2021, no fewer than 45 million people in the UK experienced a suspicious attempt at being contacted via their mobile. Phone scams are a common form of cyber-attack where fraudsters engage directly with their intended victim through their smartphone. As our phones carry so many sensitive (and therefore potentially valuable) details about us, it’s vital that trusted adults are alert to the tactics that scammers use to get access to user accounts, personal data and private information for financial gain. In this guide, you’ll find tips on a number of potential risks such as sim hacking, smishing and impersonation.
Phone Scams

 

NEW ADDITION – w/c 14th February – Wink
Wink is a messaging app which allows children to connect and communicate with other users. In a similar style to Tinder, Wink uses the swipe method for browsing profiles and accepting or declining them. Once two users have accepted each other by swiping on each other’s profile, they can then communicate and play games online together. The fact that Wink allows children to share photos, personal information and their location with other users has caused significant concern. In this guide, you’ll find tips on a number of potential risks such as grooming, cyberbullying and inappropriate content.
Wink

 

NEW ADDITION – w/c 27th January – YouTube
This astronomically popular platform has had a huge social impact: influencing online culture on a global scale and creating new celebrities. In this guide, you’ll find tips on a number of potential risks such as connecting with strangers, inappropriate content and high visibility.
YouTube Parent & Carer Guide

 

NEW ADDITION – w/c 20th December – Setting Up New Devices for Children
A handy one for Christmas…
Setting Up New Devices for Children

 

NEW ADDITION – w/c 13th December – Make the Most of the Online World this Christmas
NOS (National Online Safety) say “It’s an inconvenient truth of modern life that it can often be problematic persuading younger family members to put away their phone or switch off their games console in favour of some shared activity. Adults can feel this especially acutely at Christmas: ostensibly a time of togetherness but all too often a losing battle against the likes of Call of Duty, TikTok or YouTube.

Christmas is a time of miracles, however. There are ways to incorporate children’s beloved devices into the festivities, so grown-ups still get to enjoy some quality family moments and young ones don’t start to feel short-changed in terms of screen time. This week’s #WakeUpWednesday guide has our collection of top tips for making the most of the online world this Christmas.
Make the Most of the Online World This Christmas

 

NEW ADDITION – w/c 1st November – Snapchat
Here is an updated version of the Snapchat guide previously published.
Snapchat Guide

 

NEW ADDITION – w/c 25th October – TikTok
Here is an updated version of the TikTok guide previously published.
TikTok Guide

 

NEW ADDITION – w/c 20th September – Parental Controls
Pokémon GO has been among the world’s most popular mobile games since its spectacular release in 2016. It’s recently enjoyed a resurgence, thanks partly to people combining entertainment and exercise during lockdown. In Pokémon GO – like the Pokémon TV show, trading card series and other video games – players capture, train and battle with their Pokémon creatures: physically exploring locations while using augmented reality via their phone’s screen. The game generally provides a positive experience, but there are still some safety concerns to consider. In the guide, you’ll find tips on a number of potential risks such as environmental hazards, strangers and data collection.
Pokémon GO

 

NEW ADDITION – w/c 13th September – Social Media Scams
On any social media platform, you’ll often come across links to genuine-looking websites. They might include an exclusive offer for one of your favourite shops or invite you to complete a quiz in return for a particular reward. In some cases, clicking on these links takes you to a fake website where you are asked to provide your personal details. The whole enterprise is a ploy to capture sensitive details, such as your email address and password, which the scammers then exploit at your expense. In this guide, you’ll find tips on a number of potential risks such as phishing scams, untrustworthy URLs and ‘payment first’ scams.
Social Media Scams

 

NEW ADDITION – w/c 6th September – Back to School 
As pupils return to school after the summer break, here are some useful online safety tips:
Back to School Online Safety Tips

 

PREVIOUS GUIDES:

12 Christmas Online Safety Tips – New Devices
12 Social Media Tips for Christmas
14 Ways to be Kind Online
Amazon Alexa
Disney Plus
Expressing Safely
FaceApp
Facebook Messenger (Updated April 22)
Fifa 21 Guide
Home Activity Packs
Hoop Guide
Houseparty
Instagram
Microsoft Teams
Minecraft
National Online Safety App
Netflix
Nintendo Switch
Omegle
Online Grooming
Online Sports Betting
Overwatch
Parental Controls – iPhone
Parental Controls – Android
Playstation 4
Playstation 5
Scam Emails
Snapchat
TextMe
TikTok
Triller
Valorant
Virtual Reality
We Chat
WhatsApp
Xbox
Zoom

 

OTHER NEWS:

* Our Esafety Ambassadors help keep us all up to date with the latest apps and social media crazes which may be positive experiences for many but can have dangers of negative usage. The latest to be mentioned is called “Yolo”. See this very recent news piece for further information:
https://www.walesonline.co.uk/whats-on/family-kids-news/yolo-snapchat-nspcc-anonymous-questions-16272954

* Our Y7 students were shown this PowerPoint in assembly today regarding the use of social media. It also contains this useful link containing guidance for pupils: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yrln8nyVBLU&feature=youtu.be

* Parents/carers should be aware of this new disturbing online challenge, “Momo”, directed at children:
https://www.cambridge-news.co.uk/news/uk-world-news/what-is-momo-challenge-pic-15875631
https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-northern-ireland-47359623

* Some parents may have read stories in the press relating to a game called Doki Doki or Doki Doki Literature Club. At the moment, police have warned:
We believe this game is a risk to children and young people especially those that are emotionally vulnerable and anyone with existing mental health concerns.
I would ask parents to check the sites their children are using on a regular basis, as websites like this aren’t flagged up by normal firewall settings.
It’s also really important to discuss with your children which games and apps are suitable, and ensure they understand why others aren’t appropriate to use.
If you see your child using content online that you don’t feel is suitable, please make sure you report this…so that the relevant agencies are informed and can assess the risk posed by that game or app.
Developed by the American-based Team Salvato, Doki Doki Literature Club was released last year and is free to download and play.
No proof of age required to play and the game comes with the warning: “This game is not suitable for children or those who are easily disturbed.”

* A new platform has come to our attention called YUBO which is being dubbed “Tinder for Teens”.
Here is some information regarding this from National Online Safety:
https://nationalonlinesafety.com/resources/platform-guides/yubo-parents-guide/

* Here is a list of websites for parents as recommended by Cheshire Police in their recent e-safety presentation at Bridgewater. The first is particularly useful in providing key summaries, including what the potential dangers are, of each new app/game that emerges.

www.protectyoungeyes.com
www.thinkuknow.co.uk
www.commonsensemedia.org
www.internetmatters.org
www.parentzone.org.uk/home
www.childnet.com
www.getsafeonline.org
www.ceop.police.uk/safety-centre/
www.nationalcrimeagency.gov.uk