Local Students Learning Internet Safety

November 1, 2006--Posted at 2:45 p.m. CST

JONESBORO, AR--The internet is full of opportunities, but also dangers for children who use it. Wednesday at Nettleton Central Elementary and Nettleton Intermediate students learned about internet safety, in an interactive presentation from AT&T representatives.

If you haven't noticed your kids are probably more internet savvy than you.

"I play games on Disney Channel and sometimes I talk to my friends," said 3rd grade student Ruthie Lenards.

While online games and socializing with friends is nice, parents like the internet because of the unlimited educational opportunities.

"You can learn about stuff like if you need your homework and you need help, then the computer can help you," said Lenard.

The use of the internet is becoming more important in schools. At Nettleton Central Elementary, students as young as kindergarten use the internet for reading and math and students as young as 2nd grade are doing Power Point presentations.

"It's a tech world. They are using it at school. They are using it at home and sometimes they are using it when their parents are at work, so it is important to not only teach parents how to keep their kids safe online, but to empower kids to make the right choices," said AT&T spokesperson Heather Buffington.

However, the internet is a public place, complete with strangers and other dangers to kids.

"If you give them your address, they can steal you and kidnap you," said Lenards.

That's why educating children on internet safety is paramount.

"So we stay safe and we can know what we are supposed to do," said 2nd grade student Courtnei Buckley.

Parents can keep their kids safe by simply sitting down and talking to them about how to stay safe while surfing the net.

"Don't talk to strangers on the internet. Don't show them your family, or your dog or pet or anything," said Buckley.

Kids should also be aware to not open up emails from unknown senders. If they happen to find themselves on website or talking to someone that makes them feel uncomfortable, they should simply tell their parents.

For more tips on how to keep your kids safe and links to games that teaches internet safety to kid's simple click on the link www.att.com/safety.