Cyberbullies’ hard lessons
5:30am Saturday 15th February 2014 in By Elizabeth Mackley
CHILDREN at Holy Rood Catholic Junior School were taught the dangers of cyberbullying through drama yesterday.
Pupils in Years 3, 4, 5, and 6 spent the day taking part in the workshop, which involved learning and rehearsing a play about the effects of posting personal information online and cyberbullying before performing it in front of the rest of the school in the afternoon.
Alice Pennington from Konflux Theatre in Education led the workshop.
She said: “I think it’s quite relevant at the moment because the students are coming up to the age when they are going to be starting to use the computer and go onto the internet on their own.
“At the moment many of them are still going online with help from their parents, but very soon they will be doing it on their own and they need to know how they can keep themselves safe.
“It’s gone really well, many of the themes that we talked about they are already aware of, which is great.
“It’s all about raising awareness of the dangers online and what students can do to make sure they stay safe.
“We want to give them the skills so they can pass them on to younger students, since things like this often come better from a slightly older student rather than learning about it formally.”
Nine-year-old Jessica Kinneir from Old Walcot was one of the youngsters who took part in the play. She said: “It’s been a really, really fun day and I have learned a lot.
“We had to learn a play to show to the rest of the school about cyberbullying. It’s about someone who drops her dinner money and then her friend takes pictures of her. It gets put on YouTube and then she gets bullied.
“We learned that you should zip it and not tell anyone your personal information, and if any bad messages come up you have to block it, and if the messages come up then you have to tell an adult and flag it.”
It is not the first time that Holy Rood have used theatre to help with the pupils’ learning.
Headteacher Tony McAteer said: “It is the first time we have used this particular theatre company but we have used theatre companies in the past about different topics.
“It was Safer Internet Day on Tuesday and as part of that we had Konflux in to do this.”
To find out more about Konflux Theatre in Education, visit konfluxtheatre.co.uk.