Teaching your kids digital literacy is important in raising them in the world today and they are going to be surrounded by the internet and technology for the foreseeable future. Children are consuming more content online than ever before, but not all websites are created equal.
The internet is full of misinformation and children are more likely to believe what they see at face value than an adult. That is, of course, unless you give them the tools they need to develop strong digital literacy. What is digital literacy? It’s when a child can read or watch a video online and not only understand the content but also whether or not the information presented to them true or reliable.
In other words, kids should be able to spot fake news and stories when they see them. Having this skill will help them become more independent as they grow up and allow them to build their digital independence. It is never too early to teach a child how to use the internet responsibly- so let The CleanerNet help teach you the steps!
How to Help Kids Detect Fake Information
How to Spot Clickbait
If you want to help your kids notice and avoid false information, then you will want to teach them the difference between informative content and clickbait. Clickbait refers to any headline or title that has been worded to get you to click on the link.
More often than not these links use sensational language or images to make you feel disbelief or even anger- which is why clickbait is so enticing to kids. The links are created by organizations that want to lure people to webpages covered in ads- in the hope that they will click one. The purpose of clickbait is to make money- not to provide correct information which generally means that if the true story is boring, they will not be covering it.
Luckily, clickbait is quite easy to spot and here are just a few of the signs you will want your kids to be aware of:
- The images are overly photoshopped and eye-catching
- The headline or title is in all caps
- The domain name ends in co ( For example “nbcnews.com.co”)
- The page has a lot of pop up ads and flashing banners
If your child opens an article that might be fake news, teach them to ask the following questions:
- Does the story have sources- links to quotes or references? If not, the info may not be correct.
- Does the story invoke anger? A factual story should only provide information.
- What do real news sources have to say about the topic?
- Can you back up what they are saying with other sources? ( video, independent witnesses, etc.)
Digital literacy includes knowing how to see the situation from someone else’s point of view. Digital empathy prevents cyberbullying and lets your child know that their actions online can have a positive or negative impact on others.
Use Internet Filters
If your kids are visiting untrustworthy sites, you can apply restrictions on their devices to filter out a lot of the clickbait and websites used to exploit or infect your device. The CleanerNet provides these tools and more so that you can keep your family safe online.
The CleanerNet offers internet filters to limit your child’s exposure to fake stories and potentially harmful materials online. If you have been having problems with this at home, be sure to contact us today to find out what solutions we have available for you. There isn’t a better time than right now so contact us today!