Just to make you aware, we have had a couple of reports of instances of a new craze in KS1 playgrounds in South Tyneside. Huggy Wuggy Bear! The character is part of an adventure game available in the google play store. The age range is Teen, but the game is based in a Toy Factory and has some appeal to younger children.
Of course the craze has gone viral on Tik Tok and other social channels. In the playground it seems to be manifesting as “jump, scare” games. There is also a video on You Tube with some questionable lyrics, which is being sung in schools.
The Schools White Paper, Levelling Up, published today, sets out a series of new measures to support the delivery of these ambitions, including:
- Schools will offer a minimum school week of 32.5 hours by September 2023
- Ofsted will inspect every school by 2025, including the backlog of ‘outstanding’ schools that haven’t been inspected for many years
- By 2030 all children will benefit from being taught in a school in, or in the process of joining, a strong multi-academy trust, which will help transform underperforming schools and deliver the best possible outcomes for children
- At least £100m to put the Education Endowment Foundation on a long-term footing so they can continue to evaluate and spread best practice in education across the country
Modding can be a gateway to coding and programming – it could be the first step towards a career in game development. It’s a great way for your child to let their imaginations run wild while honing the coding skills they may have begun to learn in school. But…
Dangers of Mods
The biggest concern around mods is the possibility of adult, explicit or age-inappropriate content being added to a game. For example, one of the most common modifications is to sexualise a (usually female) character’s appearance or simulate sexual activity. These are not picked up by the games PEGI ratings and can be disturbing when young children find them.
Mods are sometimes accessed by “downloadable content”. Accessing content in this way could leave your device exposed to malware or viruses. XBox also warns that personal data may be exposed or accessed by the mod’s creator.
Public Health England have released some resources to support teachers in UKS2, KS3 and KS4 in teaching wellbeing. Click here to access the free resources.
Under the ‘Mental Wellbeing’ tab there are 16 topics, including bullying/cyberbullying, social media, online stress, body image and much more. Many of the lesson plans include a Powerpoint, activities and supporting films.
Some great resources for Primary aged children available from Barefoot. Click here to go to them.
Safer Internet Day is celebrated globally in February each year to promote the safe and positive use of digital technology for children and young people, and to inspire a national conversation about using technology responsibly, respectfully, critically, and creatively. Safer Internet Day 2022 is on 8th February and will be celebrated with the theme ‘All fun and games? Exploring respect and relationships online’.Coordinated in the UK by the UK Safer Internet Centre, Safer Internet Day is celebrated in over a hundred countries coordinated by the joint Insafe/INHOPE network, with the support of the European Commission, and national Safer Internet Centres across Europe
5 more getty ups, Lego League Regional Finals and a Christmas Jumper day – what a Friday! It’s been quite a busy week for us as I’m sure it is for you in school.
You might be wondering how to get your Nativity or Christmas Carol concert out to parents, and if you have a Realsmart website, here is a link to their help guide on embedding a video from google drive onto your website.
Here is a link to our training session on videoing your Christmas performances. We did it last year but it is still useful for tips on editing and safeguarding.
There has been some talk in the media about Crypto Currency. To be honest I was surprised at how many different forms it took apart from Bitcoin, and how rife it was in fraud, hoaxes and scams. Read our post about what it’s all about here https://ictinschools.org/what-is-cryptocurrency/
In other news…..Ofsted inspections are cancelled next week so schools can prepare for Omicron. Schools will only be inspected if there are safeguarding concerns [Schools Week]. “In order to do that contingency planning, the secretary of state for education and her majesty’s chief inspector have agreed that early years settings, schools and colleges will not be inspected next week unless there are safeguarding concerns.”
Guidance states schools should revisit their existing outbreak plans to “ensure they are well prepared for any future changes”.
Also the Bett Show is now open to register. EdTech’s biggest reunion is going to be in person on 19-21 January 2022, at the Exel in London. It is an opportunity to discover the latest products, suppliers and EdTech trends both nationally and internationally. Register here https://uk.bettshow.com/visitor-registration
Have you ever wondered how Alexa works? This Code Academy session for KS3 upwards explores how to code your own assistant https://www.codecademy.com/learn/learn-alexa?fbclid=IwAR0iqBz_MGKd8mIYSU294z_iSxYSza0Zh2BYPbfQig9ZJsY_nIRCW22N9nY
And finally, for a bit of fun, the National Online Safety Centre have released a Xmas Hit!
Many of our young people are using Discord alongside their devices to allow them to communicate with others. There are a number of things that can go wrong. This guide tells you all you need to know about the service.
The world of Discord
This week has been a busy one for us with 4 schools coming to visit The Word but it seems to be a quiet one in the cyberverse! The main topic has been in the world of cricket where historic as well as modern texts have been brought into play to show evidence of cyberbullying, racism, anti-semitism and sexual inappropriateness. And with Black Friday deals coming up whilst it’s a great time to do your Christmas shopping, watch out for fake websites, too good to be true offers and be aware of the information you are sharing. Here is some useful advice from Money Helper website https://www.moneyhelper.org.uk/en/everyday-money/banking/shop-safely-online
The capability to record Google Meets on Education Fundamentals is going away in early January 2022. Therefore, if your school is recording Google Meets or requires the ability to do so, then if your are in our SLA we will need to talk to you about the implications of this and what your options are. Please don’t hesitate to get in touch, if you have any questions.
Childnet launched their Family Digital Toolkit last week. For the first time ever, UK parents can benefit from ‘made to measure’ advice around children’s online wellbeing with the launch of this new service. Parents can spend a few minutes answering questions about their child’s online world and then get instant advice.
If they’re not ready to read it right away they can have it sent to their inbox.
Here is the link https://www.internetmatters.org/digital-family-toolkit/
Short and sweet this week, have a great weekend.