Pictured above, from left to right: Orlando, Aisha, Robyn, Louisa, Natalya and August
It can feel as though there’s no end to the things parents worry about when it comes to children and the internet, but what’s it like for the children? We asked Louisa, Orlando, Aisha, August, Robyn and Natalya – all aged between 5 and 6 years old – what they think.
Q: Where does the internet live?
Robyn: “It lives all around us.”
August: “It lives on electrical things.”
Q: What do you like to watch?
Aisha: “My Little Pony.”
August: “I like Star Wars. And Lego. I like to watch The Lego Movie.”
Louisa: “I hate Star Wars.”
August: “Don’t say ‘hate’, it’s a bad word.”
Q: If you had five minutes to watch anything you wanted online, what would you look for?
Natalya: “Jackets. I like fashion.”
August: “Transformers. They’re machines that transform into cars. I’ve watched all the Transformer films.”
Digital Parenting: “Do you have any Transformers toys?”
August: “Of course.”
Orlando: “I like Evan and Jillian [young YouTube stars whose videos show them unwrapping toys]. I’m allowed to watch them for 20 minutes, then I have to turn it off. My mum has a timer that you use for cooking and puts it on to time me.”
Robyn: “I can watch ice skating videos on YouTube. I did ice skating once. I fell over.”
Aisha: “I like Netflix… and I play Subway Surfers on my mum’s phone with her.”
Q: Do you have any devices of your own?
August: “I have a Nintendo 3DS.”
Natalya: “We [pointing to her twin sister Robyn] have an old phone to share. And we have an iPad to share.”
Robyn: “I’m not allowed to watch for very long. They stop me if I’ve been on too long. I’m happy with that.”
Robyn and Natalya’s mum: “Wow, you’re happy with that?”
Louisa: We have a smart TV and watch Taylor Swift videos on it. It’s not a computer, but you can get YouTube on it because it’s smart.”
Do your teachers ever talk to you about staying safe on the internet?
August: “Yes, our head teacher told us about disrespect and respect online.”
Natalya: “I use the internet to do my homework. I looked up Victorian times. What they wore – the big skirts.”