The Internet is a huge network of computers making a world-wide community, with millions of members, providing a vast store of information with great possibilities for education.
The system has now grown extensively enabling anyone to connect to the Internet by using standard telephone lines between their computers and those already connected to the Internet. A number of Internet Service Providers specialise in providing Internet access for a subscription fee that includes a range of additional services. Recently, however, a number of companies and organisations have started to offer free Internet access at local telephone call rates.
What is the World Wide Web?
To make the appearance of information available through the Internet more attractive, and to assist people in finding information more easily, it is now possible for special pages of information to contain text, colours, and pictures, sound, animation and even video. These pages, collectively, make up what is known as the World Wide Web (www) or Web. Most of these pages include information on the location of other pages on the World Wide Web, and it is possible to follow up links between pages with similar or related content. Moving from one page to another, regardless of where in the world they might be located, is called browsing, or surfing the net or web. Many of these Web pages contain information that may be useful in the classroom, and it is presented in a way, which is often easy to use.
A number of UK suppliers, offer schools the facility of keeping their own pages on the Internet. These school “home pages” might describe the school’s activities to outsiders or explain project work that pupils are involved in.
What is Electronic Mail (E-mail)?
This is merely .a way of sending messages from one person to another via the Internet and a telephone line. Each Internet user has a unique e-mail address (such as firstname.lastname@example.org) and by sending a message to this address, the recipient can read the message the next time he or she connects to the Internet. Internet e-mail addresses are usually provided along with a schools’ connection to the Internet and can offer individual e-mail addresses to pupils.
What are Mailing Lists?
These are mainly groups of people who exchange e-mail about a subject that is of interest to everyone in the group. The information is automatically send to everyone in the group.
What are News Groups?
These are collections of messages written for public readership rather than addressed to an individual. Each collection, or group, of messages is about a particular subject or theme. Individuals can reply to these messages, and these replies are also public. In this way it is possible to track a multi-way conversation about an important issue of the day. At present there are thousands of Newsgroups on many different topics. Newsgroups range from specialist science research to support groups for asthma to fans of James Bond movies. Most of the press concern for pornography on the Internet refers to newsgroups but they are the easiest for school Internet providers to block or police.
What are Chat Rooms?
These are 'sites' on the internet that allow a number of people to 'meet' and take part in 'real time' conversations. It is similar to having a telephone conversation with a number of people at once, except that the participants type instead of talk. There are a number of very good educational websites, but like News Groups, Chat Rooms are open to abuse as people are anonymous and can take on a totally false identity. Children need to be warned of this real danger and their use of these types of site need to be monitored very closely by parents.
These sites have largely taken over from ‘Chat Rooms’ as they also have the capacity for direct chatting on line. The major sites are Facebook, Instagram, Twitter (which is like an updated chat-room) and Youtube. On these sites people can exchange pictures, text and videos and this has led to ‘sexting’ in some teenagers, where they share pictures of themselves of an indecent nature. These pictures can then be ‘captured’ and shared in a way they have not agreed to, nor would want.
There is also the capacity for ‘grooming’ of children on these sites. This is where an adult poses as another child and engages young people in ‘chat’ leading to meeting them or other activities that are inappropriate.
Bullying can also occur on these sites and is much more difficult to detect and stop than bullying in school.
It is a little known fact that children under the age of 13 should not have an account on Facebook.
What are the dangers of the Internet?
It is true that there is some material on the Internet that would be offensive to most people, such as pornography, racist and fascist material, and this can be accessed by children if using the Internet unsupervised. The main educational providers 'filter' known offensive locations of material of this kind, but there is too much for this filtering to be totally effective, and the locations change frequently. The only way to block access to this kind of material is to have a restricted range of pages available, in which case many of the advantages of the global and dynamic nature of the Internet may be lost. An alternative system is to educate pupils and encourage an acceptable use policy and partnership between home and school in dealing with the less savoury side of Internet use.
By far the greatest danger on the internet is ‘grooming’ of children by predatory paedophiles, using social media and chat-rooms. Much of this risk can be reduced by proper diligence of what children are actually involved in online and by educating children to be careful and not to trust what they are being told online. (See Social Media).
While schools and parents need to exercise caution in the access they allow children to the internet, they should not be deterred from using it. Its educational benefits outweigh any possible dangers, which are comparatively minimal. Schools have always helped learners to engage with society, based on clear support and guidance, and use of the internet should be no exception.
In very recent years there has been a development that has brought with it increased problems for internet use. Mobile devices, such as mobile phones, tablet PC’s, Kindles and iPads have seen a massive rise in numbers and usage. If children have their own devices it is very difficult for parents to know exactly what their children are accessing on a daily basis. You can use ‘Parental Controls’ on your home internet system, or look for these options on the mobile device and you should do this as a matter of course.
If you have concerns about a mobile device you may need to check your child’s browsing history or remove the device from use altogether.
How can I get more information?
There are many magazines in newsagents that cater for beginners as well as advanced users of the Internet.
The Parents' Information Network has produced advice on the safe use of the internet for families at http://www.pin-parents.com/learning/safeindx.htm
3. School Policy
Pupil access to the Internet Adopted: October 2016 The school encourages use by pupils of the rich information resources available on the Internet, together with the development of appropriate skills to analyse and evaluate such resources. These skills will be fundamental in the society our pupils will be entering.
On-line services significantly alter the information landscape for schools by opening classrooms to a broader array of resources. In the past, teaching and library materials could usually be carefully chosen. All such materials would be chosen to be consistent with national policies, supporting and enriching the curriculum while taking into account the varied teaching needs, learning styles, abilities and developmental levels of the pupils. Internet access, because it may lead to any publicly available site in the world, will open classrooms to electronic information resources which have not been selected by teachers as appropriate for use by pupils.
Electronic information research skills are now fundamental to preparation of citizens and future employees during the coming Information age. The school expects that staff will begin to investigate possibilities and blend use of such information as appropriate within the curriculum and that staff will provide guidance and instruction to pupils in the appropriate use of such resources.
Staff will consult the ICT Coordinator for advice on content, training and appropriate teaching levels consistent with the school’s ICT programme of study.
Independent pupil use of telecommunications and electronic information resources is not advised and will only be permitted upon submission of permission and agreement forms by parents of pupils and by pupils themselves.
Access to on-line resources will enable pupils to explore thousands of libraries, databases, and bulletin boards while exchanging messages with people throughout the world. The school believes that the benefits to pupils from access to information resources and increased opportunities for collaboration exceed the disadvantages. But ultimately, parents and guardians of minors are responsible for setting and conveying the standards that their children should follow when using media and information sources. To that end, the school supports and respects each family's right to decide whether or not to apply for independent access.
The school’s ICT Coordinator will prepare appropriate procedures for implementing this policy and for reviewing and evaluating Its effect on teaching and learning.
4. School Procedures
In order to match electronic resources as closely as possible to the national and school curriculum, teachers need to review and evaluate resources in order to offer "home pages" and menus of materials that are appropriate to the age range and ability of the group being taught. The ICT co-ordinator will provide appropriate guidance to pupils as they make use of telecommunications and electronic information resources to conduct research and other studies. All pupils will be informed by staff of their rights and responsibilities as users, before their first use, either as an individual user or as a member of a class or group.
As much as possible, the school’s chosen information provider has organised information resources in ways that point pupils to those that have been reviewed and evaluated prior to use. While pupils may be able to move beyond those resources to others that have not been evaluated by staff, they shall be provided with guidelines and lists of resources particularly suited to the learning objectives. Pupils may pursue electronic research independent of staff supervision only if they have been granted parental permission and have submitted all required forms. Permission is not transferable and may not be shared.
The school has developed a set of guidelines for Internet use by pupils. These rules will be made available to all pupils, and kept under constant review.
All members of staff are responsible for explaining the rules and their implications. All members of staff need to be aware of possible misuses of on-line access and their responsibilities towards pupils.
5. Pupil guidelines for Internet use
Pupils are responsible for good behaviour on the Internet just as they are in a classroom or a school corridor. General school rules apply.
General (lot. generalis - umumiy, bosh) - qurolli kuchlardagi harbiy unvon (daraja). Dastlab, 16-a.da Fransiyada joriy qilingan. Rossiyada 17-a.ning 2-yarmidan maʼlum. Oʻzbekiston qurolli kuchlarida G.
The Internet is provided for pupils to conduct research and communicate with others. Parents’ permission is required. Remember that access is a privilege, not a right and that access requires responsibility.
Individual users of the Internet are responsible for their behaviour and communications over the network. It is presumed that users will comply with school standards and will honour the agreements they have signed.
Computer storage areas and flash drives will be treated like school lockers. Staff may review files and communications to insure that users are using the system responsibly. Users should not expect that files stored on servers or disks would always be private.
During school, teachers will guide pupils toward appropriate materials. Outside of school, families bear responsibility for such guidance as they must also exercise with information sources such as television, telephones, movies, radio and other potentially offensive media.
The following are not permitted:
Sending or displaying offensive messages or pictures
Using obscene language
Harassing, insulting or attacking others
Damaging computers, computer systems or computer networks