10 tiny ways you can make the world a better place today

You can make the world a better place TODAY

Today is Safer Internet Day 2016(February 9), and the theme is “play your part for a better internet”. To help you play your part, we’d like to share a new tip sheet by and for Canadian youths on how to make the Internet safer and better for everyone.

Be Respectful, Patient and Kind: How Youth are Building a Better World Online

MediaSmarts asked Canadian teens attending a Digital Youth Summit what they do to make the online world better for everyone. Here’s what they said:

First Do No Harm: How to be an active witness - Tip Sheet

Did you know? Two-thirds of Canadian students have helped someone who was being picked on online.

When you see or hear bad things happening online, you have a lot of power to make things better – or worse. Sometimes it’s hard to know the right thing to do, so ask yourself these questions:

One of the biggest changes in our understanding of bullying over the past few years has been our increased awareness of the important role that witnesses, or bystanders, play in any bullying situation. Research on offline bullying has shown that witnesses can be just as important as targets or perpetrators in determining how a bullying scenario plays out. This is especially relevant in the case of electronic bullying, where witnesses have many more choices in how they might engage: they can choose to be invisible, to join in anonymously, to re-victimize someone by forwarding bullying material – or they can choose to intervene, to offer support to the person being targeted and to bear witness to what they have seen

In today’s day and age, social media is everywhere. If you own a smartphone or computer of any sort, odds are you have at least one social media account and checking it is a part of your everyday routine. In high school, you’re constantly surrounded by social media! Whether it’s Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram, high school life nowadays revolves around these three entities. It’s a great way to connect with friends, make plans, help spread information if you’re in a school club or sport, and it can even help you meet new people. Although there are many great things social media can offer, there can be a couple downsides too.

The Your Connected Life guide is designed to help students who are just entering high school balance the demands of their offline life with their digital one.

Today, Facebook, MediaSmarts and Aboriginal Peoples Television Network (APTN) released a series of newly translated guides for Aboriginal teens, which provide tips for sharing and making decisions online. The Think Before You Share guides were released in Winnipeg during the opening of the National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation at the University of Manitoba.

Joe McGinniss’ book The Selling of the President had a shocking title for 1968, suggesting as it did that in the television age the presidency had become nothing more than another product to be packaged and sold. MediaSmarts’ resource, Watching the Elections (a lesson for Grades 8-12), shines a light on how the different aspects of an election – from the debates to political ads to the candidates themselves – are actually media products.

The new Ontario Health and Physical Education curriculum released this year by the Ontario Ministry of Education is the first major revision to the subject area in almost 30 years.

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