External educational resources and information

In this section, you will find information, tools and other resources that can be used to help teachers engage with kids on the topic of privacy. Please note that not all of these resources are available in both English and French.

Non-governmental resources

Media Smarts, a not-for-profit charitable organization for digital and media literacy, provides a wide range of teaching materials. Below are just some of the lesson plans and games offered on the Media Smarts site. To access further materials from this rich and varied resource select “Privacy” using the Find Lessons & Resources tool.

  • The educational game Privacy Pirates introduces children, ages 7-9, to the concept of online privacy. The children assemble a map leading to a pirate treasure (to introduce the idea that personal information has value). En route, they answer a series of questions about online privacy receiving additional pieces of the treasure map for corrects answers.
  • Click if You Agree is an educational game that aims to help 12 to 14 year olds learn how to read and understand privacy policies and terms of use rather than blindly clicking “I agree”.
  • Data Defenders is an interactive game funded through the OPC’s Contributions Program. It teaches children and pre-teens the concept of personal information and its economic value, and introduces them to ways to manage and protect their personal information on the websites and apps they enjoy.
  • Playing with Privacy is a lesson plan for teaching Grades 7 to 8 about how their gaming experiences may be compromising their personal information. Students look at options for protecting their privacy. The material prompts discussions about the trade-off between personal privacy and the full game experience.
  • Privacy and Internet Life is a Grade 7 to 8 lesson plan to help raise students’ awareness of online privacy issues, giving them the tools to weigh the potential risks and consequences of providing personal information to social networking sites and of posting their information online.
  • Aimed at Grades 9 to 12, The Privacy Dilemma lesson plan prompts students to weigh the trade-offs we make on a daily basis between maintaining our privacy, and gaining access to information services. Students produce short video essays that reflect those privacy issues they consider to be important.
  • MediaSmarts has developed training resources for educators`to help them learn how to develop digital literacy lessons and activities.

The Canadian Centre for Child Protection, is a national charity dedicated to the personal safety of children, including digital safety. It has several resources for parents and teachers, including:

  • The Door that’s not Locked has a teachers’ section detailing Internet safety information from K to Grade 9.
  • http://dontgetsextorted.ca, is a humour-based resource that tackles the issue of sextortion and how teens can prevent this from happening to them. The site includes a downloadable lesson plan.
  • NeedHelpNow.ca, helps teens stop the spread of sexual pictures or videos and provides support along the way. It includes resources on cyberbullying.

ConnectED, in receipt of funding from the Ontario Ministry of Education, provides teaching resources addressing Internet safety for students in Grades 4-6.

Cyber Safe Girl, a project from the Atlantic Ministers Responsible for the Status of Women has tips and links for families and teachers. The site also links to a range of Atlantic Canada resources on cyber safety.

The Hive Toronto Privacy Badges Curriculum, for students aged 13+, has ten privacy learning activities, linked to prototype level badges. There is a Facilitator’s Guide as well as four teaching kits to explain the overarching themes of Personal Information, Privacy Policy, Privacy in Everyday Life and Privacy Futures. The badges were created by the Mozilla Hive Toronto Learning Network. The Network links more than 40 organizations across Toronto, allowing public school students to affect their environment by engaging with technology.   

The learn section of the Digital Tattoo project (run out of the University of British Columbia) is aimed at older high school students as well as those at college and university. A series of short videos discuss a variety of subjects including privacy in the cloud, academic honesty and online research.

The Game design non-profit, Atmosphere Industries, received funding from the Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada to develop The Watchers an iPad and board game for kids 8 years and older, designed with the help of seven kids. The goal of the game is to stimulate discussion and develop independent privacy decision making skills.

The privacy educational kit from l’Association des professionnels en accès à l’information et en protection de la vie privée (AAPI) aimed at junior high school teachers and students to help develop sound practices for posting pictures and personal information on the Internet. The kit was created to help teachers discuss issues concerning online privacy and personal information protection and encourage sound practices for posting pictures and the use and disclosure of personal information.

The Ontario Software Acquisition Program Advisory Committee, in collaboration with the Ministry of Education in Ontario, offers resources for teaching digital citizenship. It has also published a school leader learning series.

Ophea is a bilingual not-for-profit organization promoting the lifelong benefits of healthy, active living. Under its teaching tools section, there are two programs about Internet safety : Cybercops includes lesson plans, interactive modules and games for grades 7 and 8; Connect[ED] is a free online resource to address Internet safety for grades 4-6.

The Royal Canadian Mounted Police provides information on online safety on its Web site, to ensure Canadians, and specifically children, have the information needed to develop safe online surfing habits. Topics covers include: tips for parents, tips for teens, What is sexting?, Sextortion, and Misuse of the Internet – Consequences and the Law. There is also an Internet safety infographic that explains how to keep safe in the online world.

WiredSafety is an online safety, education and help group. It provides one-to-one help, resources and extension information, and education to people of all ages on Internet and interactive technology safety, privacy and security issues.

Provincial and Territorial Resources

Alberta

The resources section of the Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner of Alberta has a wide range of information for individuals including on privacy impact assessments and privacy management.

British Columbia

The report on Cyberbullying from the Office of the Information & Privacy Commissioner for British Columbia and the Representative for Children and Youth contains a resources section with some useful links for teachers.

BC’s Digital Literacy Framework was published in 2016 by the provincial Ministry of Education. BC also updated its Applied Design, Skills and Technologies Curriculum in 2016, for Grades K-12.

Manitoba

The Teachers and Youth section from the Manitoba Ombudsman provides curriculum guides as well as leaflets addressing issues around youth rights.

Joining the Herd: A Handbook on Participating in Manitoba's Government (grades 6, 9 and 11) and Joining the Herd II: A Collection of Learning Activities Designed to Support the Manitoba Social Studies Curriculum for Grades 6, 9 and 12 contain a wide range of exercises and case studies touching on privacy issues including how to help students understand their own privacy rights and how they can protect their personal information.

A series of information sheets on the rights of youth also discuss privacy issues. The Government of Manitoba’s Literacy with ICT across the Curriculum contains resources for educators.

New Brunswick

The Office of Integrity Commissioner in New Brunswick hosts information for individuals on privacy best practices as well as complaint procedures.

Newfoundland and Labrador

Information on outreach work as well as details of privacy legislation is available from The Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner for Newfoundland and Labrador.

Northwest Territories

The Government of Northwest Territories, Department of Justice provides a link to their Access to Information and Protection of Privacy Act. Northwest Territories and Nunavut are covered by the same Privacy Commissioner.

Nova Scotia

The Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner in Nova Scotia has a mini guide to privacy as well as other tools to help citizens understand the complaint process.

Nunavut

The Information and Privacy Commissioner of Nunavut provides links to legislation and other privacy and information related resources for the general public.

Ontario

The Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner of Ontario provides teacher toolkits tailored to address key elements of the Ontario curriculum to help students tackle the issues around open government and protection of privacy.

Online Educational Services: What Educators Need to Know, a brochure published in collaboration with the Ontario Association of School Board Officials (OASBO), provides information for educators about the potential privacy risks of online educational services.

What Students need to Know - Grade 5 Teacher’s Guide has teaching materials to introduce students to the concept of privacy and prompt discussion of privacy issues in their own lives.

What Students need to Know – Grade 10 Teacher’s Guide has lessons tailored to get students talking about why being on top of their privacy settings today can protect them from a whole lot of embarrassment – or worse – in the future. 

What Students need to Know - Grade 11 & 12 Teacher’s Guide contains comprehensive lesson plans to give students the tools they need to make wise choices when sharing their personal information. The toolkit outlines the legal protections available as well as discussing what students themselves can do to protect their privacy. There are practical tips on how to deal with identity theft, protect your reputation, be Internet savvy and stay safe and smart online. Materials also provide a framework for students to discuss the impact of privacy on themselves and wider society.

Prince Edward Island

The Information and Privacy Commissioner for Prince Edward Island hosts information on how to protect your privacy as well as information on privacy rulings.

Quebec

The youth section of the Commission d'accès à l'information du Québec (available in French only) website has information posters for download as well as short sections containing discussion materials for parents and teachers. These contain information about privacy linked to Internet use.

Saskatchewan

The Office of the Saskatchewan Information and Privacy Commissioner has links to privacy related resources for citizens as well as public bodies and elected officials.

Yukon

The Yukon Information and Privacy Commissioner provides information for the general public on what to do if you have concerns about your privacy.

International

France’s Commission Nationale de l'Informatique et des Libertés (CNIL) hosts a youth webpage that hosts many types of resources (in French only), including videos and posters.

The Norwegian Data Protection Authority has published You Decide, a teaching resource about privacy and digital responsibility for children and young adults aged 9-18 years.

The National Privacy Commission in the Philippines has published a beginner’s guide to personal data privacy called 30 Ways to Love Yourself Online.

The UK’s Information Commissioner’s Office has published primary school lesson plans and resources on their website. It also includes infographics designed for different age groups.

The Federal Trade Commission provides resources for elementary and middle school teachers including online toolkits, short articles, activities, quizzes, etc. There are also resources for high school teachers.

Hong Kong’s Office of the Privacy Commissioner for Personal Data has a one stop portal for children where they can learn about personal data privacy.  It also provides resources for teachers and parents such as the leaflet with practical tips for parents and teachers.  Some sections are not available in English.

Developed by young people for young people, New Zealand has an information kit about privacy that offers a variety of activities for students.

The Office of the Australian Information Commissioner has a fact sheet with privacy tips for parents and caregivers.

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