Be Internet Legends by Google
Media literacy is an essential part of online safety. It is woven through the DCMS Media Literacy strategy, as well as being a fundamental aspect of Ofcom’s work as a regulator for the upcoming Online Safety Bill.
However, media literacy is still in its relative infancy when it comes to education. It can be found in spirit across all computing and RSE curricula – but some teachers have told us the concept is unfamiliar, even if its principles are not.
We know that primary teachers need fresh, future-facing and accessible resources that are easy to plan, deliver and assess in the classroom. That’s where Be Internet Legends comes in.
Free teaching resources for ages 7 to 11
Be Internet Legends is a free UK primary school online safety programme for pupils aged 7 to 11, created by Google in partnership with Parent Zone. Since 2018, it has reached nearly 5 million children and 70,000 teachers.
At the heart of the programme is a fully digital curriculum pack, updated in 2022.
It now includes new media literacy activities – devised by leading experts to help pupils better assess digital spaces, content and relationships.
The programme centres on five core pillars that also explore key online safety skills and behaviours. These are to be:
Sharp – Think Before You Share
Alert – Check it’s For Real
Secure - Protect Your Stuff
Kind – Respect Each Other
Brave – When in Doubt, Discuss
Through these pillars, children learn about issues like scams, disinformation, bullying, security and data. And it has been proven to work. With Be Internet Legends, children are twice as likely to show an improved understanding of internet safety.*
Be Internet Legends: Responding to Teacher Needs
“Interactive resources for the lessons would benefit some staff who feel less confident in the subject.”
“[different formats] could be useful to help staff access the resources easily.”
“I could do with PowerPoint slides for each session. I’m making them as I go along, which is time-consuming”
“We use Google Classroom so this would support our teachers to deliver the curriculum more effectively”
These are just a few of the comments teachers passed onto us during feedback and consultation over 12 months.
Making the programme easier to plan, deliver and track are the driving factors for the development in the programme.
We listened and transformed the content to be fully digital – with interactive resources to help bring learning to life in the classroom.
This includes 38 segmented activities and 12 interactive guided lessons, also integrated with Google Classroom.
Schools can now easily spread activities and lessons across a range of age groups and assess progression – as well as use the interactive lessons to save valuable time.
Accessible and adaptable resources for children with SEND have been developed and focus on a lesson from the Alert pillar. It explores scams and disinformation and includes a quiz and other activities that can be adapted for pupils and students. Go to the SEND resources.
With Be Internet Legends, we aim to build children’s understanding of their digital world – and help the UK become a more confident and media-literate place to live.
You can explore Be Internet Legends resources, including virtual assemblies, at www.parentzone.org.uk/beinternetlegends
*Data based on research commissioned by Google and run by Ipsos from April to July 2021 among 1,638 primary school pupils in years 3-6 at 16 schools in the UK where Google has carried out Be Internet Legends online safety training. For more details, please visit http://assets.ipsos-mori.com/cx/beinternetawesome/