NSW Department of Education

How to teach digital citizenship

For teachers
For parents
For students

Key message

There are lots of resources available for teachers who want to keep up to date with the current issues facing users of digital technology. Below you can find examples of relevant apps, situations and online experiences that you can use when teaching and discussing digital citizenship in your classroom.

Professional learning

The Office of the eSafety Commissioner offers online teacher training. These webinars focus on digital and online safety, and align with the other resources available on the Office of the eSafety Commissioner’s website. These webinars are NESA registered, and will award 3 hours of professional learning at Proficient level.

Common Sense Education has two digital citizenship tutorials – an introduction to digital citizenship, and a guide to protecting student privacy. The first tutorial also serves as a guide to their K-12 digital citizenship curriculum. At time of writing, tutorials offered by Common Sense Education are not registered with NESA.

Google's Teacher Centre includes a variety of professional learning resources, including a digital citizenship and safety course that aligns well with their Be Internet Awesome initiative.

Microsoft Educator's digital citizenship course talks about how you can use technology to help teach students about the benefits and risks of the online world.

Lessons, lesson plans and resources

The eSafety Commissioner hosts a number of classroom resources related to online safety.

  • eSafety guide to games, apps and social networking – a library of popular games, apps and social networks, including information about age-appropriateness, suggestions for keeping personal information private and strategies for reporting and responding to cyberbullying and inappropriate content on each platform
  • The Lost Summer – a game for 11-14 year olds that builds digital intelligence skills
  • Be Deadly Online – a collection of resources and lessons developed by Indigenous writers and actors
  • The YeS Project – a collection of workshops that schools and educators can use to design a digital health project that encourages positive behaviour.

Common Sense Education has two quality resources, both with extensive lesson plans and conversation starters. While these resources are aligned with US outcomes, the content can be adapted to a NSW or Australian context.

Google’s Be Internet Awesome initiative is aimed at primary students – it uses the Interland game to teach the principles of digital citizenship.

LinkedIn Learning offer free online courses for NSW DoE staff. Their Digital Citizenship course help teachers understand the ideas and areas of digital citizenship. It describes the impact of a digital footprint. You will learn about safely participating in online communities, helping students deal with cyberbullying, keeping computers free of viruses and malware, and safely shopping online.

Microsoft's Digital Literacy course has modules that assume no knowledge. It includes short modules on safely sharing information online, communicating effectively and collaborating online.

Microsoft has also produced a Minecraft digital citizenship lesson, complete with a range of worlds and lesson plans.

The Berkman Klein Center at Harvard University has published a multilingual online resources for administrators, teachers, students and parents. The Digital Citizenship Resource Platform is a collection of tools around areas of youth life that can help in navigating connected learning environments and the digital world.

Top tips

Additional resources

Curriculum and syllabus links


Need help?