When Teaching Web Safety Don’t Forget to Teach Common Sense

Earlier this week I shared the RADCAB framework for teaching students how to evaluate websites. In the past I’ve shared other resources for teaching students how to recognize unsafe situations online (Planet Nutshell has a great set of videos on the topic). While these online evaluation resources are useful, don’t forget to teach students (children and adults) to use common sense before clicking on a link. I found two good examples of this this morning. Take a look at the screenshots below for explanations. (Feel free to download and use these screenshots in your classroom).

Click to view full size.

The picture above is a screenshot of the landing page for “business” that claims to provide website development. The page looks like it’s straight out of 1999. That look combined with the fact that I don’t know what will happen when I click the picture as the page wants me to, tells me that I probably shouldn’t click the picture. If it doesn’t look right, don’t click it.

Click to view full size. 

The picture above is a screenshot of my direct message inbox on Twitter. You’ll notice the first three messages are short messages with links. I’m not going to click those links because I don’t have any context for them. I hadn’t had conversations with any of those three people prior to them sending me those vaguely worded messages with links. On a similar note, if those messages said, “someone is saying nasty things about you” followed by a link, I’m not clicking that link. You can read more about that specific situation here.

Below are two helpful reminder videos from Common Craft about this topic.


Thank You Readers for 14 Amazing Years!