It's important for all of us to stay safe and act responsibly when we're online, and that holds doubly true for young people. To help educators teach kids how to be more mindful when they use the internet, Facebook has released a batch of resources in its Digital Literacy Library. The materials guide educators in helping young people aged 11 to 18 understand issues such as privacy, reputation, security, safety and identity exploration.
The youth and media team at the Berkman Klein Center for Internet & Society at Harvard University developed the 18 lessons, which are free to use. The team based the lessons on 10 years worth of research, and designed them for use in both formal and informal learning settings. The lessons take between 30 minutes and two hours to work through and are available only in English for now, though Facebook plans to release them in 45 more languages. The company will work with non-profits around the world to adapt the materials and create more.
The lessons are categorized by age group, with those on public WiFi and cybersecurity, phishing and spam targeted more towards 15 to 18-year-olds. They're also grouped into five modules: Privacy and Reputation, Identity Exploration, Positive Reputation, Security and Community Engagement.
Around 830 million young people are using the internet, and they may not be aware of the potential dangers and complications of being online, so this is unquestionably a positive step. The Digital Literacy Library is not Facebook's first attempt at educating kids, though. The company opened a Youth Portal earlier this year to help teens learn about security on its platform and how to report questionable content. It also started promoting kindness and safety among children who use the Messenger Kids app.