5 Steps to Online Safety

5 Steps to Internet Safety



Our goal is to operate in safe places on the internet.  As you travel in cyberspace, be on guard for an inappropriate web site or for anyone who appears to be cyberbullying.  For any questionable situations, follow these rules:

1) Stop
Stop what you are doing. Don’t keep clicking.

2) Screenshot
Take a screenshot.  Save a copy and print a copy.

3) Block
Anyone offensive should be blocked and removed as a friend if he or she is on your friends list.

4) Tell
Tell your teacher or network administrator (or your parents if you are at home) about the situation and give them a copy of the screenshot.  When you have a problem, do not stop speaking out until you find someone who can help you.

5) Share
After talking with your parents and/or teacher, if the incident is appropriate to discuss, share it with others to promote Internet safety.

Are these steps different from others?


Over the past several years, I’ve been tweaking and working on my own recommendations for students and teachers for online safety.  The issues I had with some existing methods is that they didn’t allow for adequate documentation of what had happened (thus a screenshot) and also didn’t allow to promote a classroom and home environment that could adapt and change with the rapidly changing uses of the Internet. (thus sharing)

So, here it is, my 5 Steps to Internet Safety that I’m using with my children now and will be using with my students in the classroom in the upcoming weeks as part of Digiteen.

A few notes here for teachers.  All children should know how to take a screenshot in a way appropriate for their computer.  Although we use the Fireshot plug in for use on the Internet, that is not enough – what if they are in a virtual world or in a non-firefox browser?  This is one of the first things I teach my students but all students should know how to make a screenshot and paste it into a wordprocessor.  How will we know what happens, particularly if the content is deleted by the offender (as usually happens.)  We need to teach them how to be safe, and a screenshot is essential.

Teachers need to know how to screenshot too!

This is often important for teachers who see problems and delete the content and then realize they have NO DOCUMENTATION.  Learn to take a screenshot and teach kids of all ages how to do this. If you are a parent, teach your child how to do this if they can get online.  My eight year old can do it! It is important!



Get Your Copy of the Five Steps


Free Copies of the Flyers for Schools to Share with Parents, Teachers, and Students


Now, I’ve made this available for you AT SCHOOL to print a copy of the nice graphical piece that I had my sister design using the 5 Steps.  I have uploaded a copy of this to DocStoc and if you are using it at school to print and hand out to teachers, students, or parents in a non-profit manner (this means you’re not making money off presenting the seminar) then go ahead and print away.  I am happy to share with schools and those who want to help others and are not profiting from it.

5 Steps to Internet Safety

You can order a High Quality Poster, Framed Copy, Smaller Poster, or Slick Handouts


If, for some reason, however, you want to use these and are a trainer or seminar deliverer and need to have a high quality poster or flyers, I’ve uploaded these to a new store I created on cafe press (so I could order a high quality poster to put on my wall at school.)  This is the same information as shown in the flyer, just tweaked and much higher resolution to allow printing on poster size.  If you are for profit or want to use these in your workshop, just contact me and I’ll be happy to work something out for volume.

But remember, it is only fair not to sell someone else’s work and that is why my work is licensed Noncommercial.  Sarah (my sister) and I worked hard on this and so if you are for profit, it is only fair to buy them!  Or if you are a classroom and want to have a good poster, you can get it!  (And right now with my husband’s company cutting everyone’s pay across the board, I appreciate your supporting what I do here at Cool Cat Teacher!)

http://www.cafepress.com/coolcatteacher has the posters:  a large size, small size, framed copy, and a flyer size that is high quality (could also be printed to go by teacher’s desks.)  I already ordered the poster myself and am happy with the quality or I wouldn’t make it available for you.

Let me know if you have any questions or feedback.


I love students! Best teacher blog winner * Mom * Speaker * author * HOST 10-Minute Teacher Show * @Mashable Top Teacher on Twitter * top #edtech Twitterer

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

5 thoughts on “5 Steps to Online Safety

  1. I think that Internet Safety is very important. This is a good thig to know about if you are a kid and dont know about the web. It teaches you a good lesson, and how to be safe online.

  2. Thank for sharing this advice and the poster. We had a forum several weeks ago and I was amazed at how many students said that they are the subject of cyber bullying. Collecting evidence is important.
    Teaching students and staff the print screen function is an obvious but often overlooked tool. My students have learnt how to use the print screen function as we are a PC school, but I know many teachers do not know how to do this. When our school holidays finish, I shall ensure again, that students know how to use this function and that they do use it when cyber bullied.
    Thank you for the posters as I will be printing them and placing them on our notice board too.

  3. I often participate in online webinars and webcasts. I know that anything I post will be captured and published along with the audio stream. If someone posts on a public forum – or even in a chat- there should be NO expectation of privacy. That is why students and teachers alike have to be very careful that what they post is professional and not something that would be embarassing to them or others.
    In fact, even emails sent through a school server, to the best of my knowledge, have to be archived by the school and made available if necessary.
    In this day and age, I do not think anyone can have an expectation of privacy for what they post online.
    In fact, that is why it is so important to educate students about the proper, safe, ethical use of social networking sites. We seem to be moving in that direction, and I believe young people, for the most part, are finally getting it that what they do in the public arena is just that – public. As David Pogue said in his address to Texas educators, “Nothing posted ever stays in the same place, and it never goes away.” I paraphrased, but that was the essence.
    So, if someone is unwise enough to post something that is insulting or harrassing, beware. Your words can be captured (through a screenshot or some other vehicle) and can come back to haunt you.

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