Understanding Cyberbullying : Virtual vs. Physical Worlds - Lesson Lesson Plan

Level: Grades 7 and 8

Duration: 2-3 hours

Author: MediaSmarts

This lesson is part of USE, UNDERSTAND & CREATE: A Digital Literacy Framework for Canadian Schools.


In this lesson, students explore the verbal and visual cues that we rely on to understand how other people are feeling. They then consider the differences between online and offline communication and discuss how these differences may make it difficult to understand the effect our words and actions have on others online. Students then identify strategies for mitigating these aspects of online communication and apply those strategies to create a media product in which they are used successfully.

This lesson is part of the Cyberbullying: Encouraging ethical online behaviour lesson series.

Learning Outcomes

Students will demonstrate:

  • understanding of how online communication differs from face-to-face conversation
  • awareness of how the distinct attributes of online communication may contribute to inappropriate or bullying behaviour
  • recognition of cyberbullying behaviour
  • understanding of the crucial role played by witnesses, including themselves, in fuelling or stopping bullying behaviour – online and offline
  • awareness of the impact of cyberbullying on targeted individuals
  • knowledge of appropriate action to take when cyberbullying occurs
  • awareness of rules for good digital citizenship

Home and School Connection

This lesson and all associated documents (handouts, overheads, backgrounders) are available in an easy-print, pdf kit version.