Spam can be hard to navigate at any age, but especially so for digital natives who tend to be more trusting of their online interactions. While email and messaging providers try to filter junk mail, scammers are getting more clever and their tricks more subtle. Just because a message reaches your inbox doesn’t mean it’s safe.
It’s especially important to teach kids how to identify potentially dangerous emails. In the “Share Spam With Students” lesson plan on her blog Teacher Talk, Alice Keeler asks students to look at everything from spelling to URLs to help identify whether a message is legitimate. To try this digital citizenship activity in your classroom, use Keeler’s checklist of clues and these five questions to get your students thinking more critically: