Friendly Internet Zone for Lithuanian schools

  • Awareness
  • 21/12/2016
  • Lithuanian Safer Internet Centre

The annual national exhibition ‘Mokykla 2016' (School 2016), which took place 25-26 November 2016 in the Lithuanian Exhibition and Congress Centre (LITEXPO), was dedicated to meeting and talking with families, teachers and other stakeholders in schools' activities.

Norway and Hungary took part in the exhibition this year, while more than 180 events and workshops were organised. The total number of visitors to both exhibitions – SCHOOL 2016 and KID LAND 2016 – totalled 18,580, and more than 170 teacher and student groups from all over Lithuania visited the exhibition.

The Lithuanian Safer Internet Centre (SIC) participated in the exhibition, inviting children and adults (teachers, students, parents and grandparents) to solve crosswords and riddles, along with other interesting tasks. Older students were actively involved in solving real-life situations related to safer internet issues and responsible behaviour online: they willingly shared their experiences online and asked where they can seek advice if they encounter problems. Visitors to the exhibition stand were rewarded with different prizes and project gadgets.

During the exhibition, visitors could also get acquainted with the project partners of the Safer Internet Centre – the information and education services, and the support services provided by the helpline and hotline.

A workshop, entitled ‘Safe internet – safe school community', was hosted by the project lecturers together with 9th and 10th grade students from Kaišiadorys Algirdas Brazauskas Gymnasium. The students volunteered to participate in the workshop, which also introduced the opportunity to become a Safer Internet Ambassador at school. In groups, students worked together with teachers using iPads and together they completed a ‘Matrix of threats on the internet', which students found very interesting. Each group included two students from the Gymnasium who acted as ‘consultants'. After the workshop, all students were presented with small souvenirs.

As is typical at events such as this, the SIC staff aimed to attract young people‘s attention to threats online and their own possibilities to make the internet safer, encouraging young visitors to use the knowledge gained in the Friendly Internet Zone back in the ‘real' world. Let‘s not forget that a better and safer internet is not just about its speed, the blocking software installed, or banning young people from to surfing and collaborating in social networks, but more so about a responsible use of the services online and ability to evaluate the content well.

Eight members of the Safer Internet Youth Forum (SIYF) also volunteered in the Friendly Internet Zone. Some students from Vilnius Žirmūnai Gymnasium shared their reflections:

"I took part in the exhibition ‘School without Borders 2016'. I liked it very much as we could socialise with the youth and invite them to join our forum. Our contemporaries were friendly and got interested in the possibility to join SIYF. I gained experience as a volunteer and found out some news about the safer internet."

- Veronika

"It was fun to join SIYF and spread the information about it in order to involve more young people in the interesting and useful activities. I learned a lot from my contemporaries‘ stories. Especially, I liked the team I worked with. They pleasantly accepted me and were very friendly."

- Gabija

Find out more about the work of the Lithuanian Safer Internet Centre, including its awareness raising, helpline, hotline and youth participation services.

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