Young people grow up with digital media and use it in a very intuitive way. But does intuitively automatically mean responsibly and for their own good? Numerous media reports and the daily experiences of many parents and teachers give a clear answer: No. Often, young people miss media literacy and the ability to identify and assess threats.
One day after the Cyber Security Summit, to which the Munich Security Conference and the Telekom had invited on November 3 in Bonn, Deutsche Telekom initiated for the first time a Security Conference for children.
The event is especially aimed at children in grades 4-6, because children enter the world of digital possibilities and acquire their own user patterns at this age. Here, a special outreach is necessary at an early stage to create awareness for opportunities and risks of media use. On the morning of the Cyber Security Summit, the children were allowed to test themselves in the new Teachtoday course. At five different stations, they could complete exercises and assignments regarding various aspects of safe media use, such as play times, privacy and cyber-bullying.
Then they were greeted by Timotheus Höttges, the president and CEO of Deutsche Telekom, followed by a panel discussion with representatives from the fields of education and media. The highlight of the day was the ceremony for the safe use contest “Media, aber sicher!” (Safe Media, yeah!) Since August, schools and initiatives had applied at Telekom nationwide with their best projects on the subject of safe media use. Six schools and groups were chosen from the submissions by a jury. The winning projects were invited to the Cyber Security Summit for Kids in Bonn to be awarded. First place went to the project “Jetzt – im Netz” (Now Online) from Uhland elementary school in Wurmlingen, Baden-Württemberg. The 4th graders of Uhland elementary school worked on this project as researchers who gather information about the Internet and develop a scorecard for websites suitable for children. Both the idea and the execution convinced the jury the most and it has also awarded the first prize to recognize the role model of this project for other classes and schools.