Google announced a new partnership today to promote online safety and positivity for young children. The company is working with the National Parent Teachers Association and the nonprofit DonorsChoose.org, which lets companies donate directly to public schools, on a project the organizations are calling “Be Internet Awesome.” Essentially, Google is trying to better educate new web users on how to combat the negative aspects of the internet, especially as a vast majority of communication, entertainment, and education moves to digital platforms and tools.
“Research shows us that parents want to teach their kids how to be safe online but are unsure how to get the conversation going,” explains Google employee Julianne Yi, who’s helping organize the Be Internet Awesome initiative. “To help them, we created workshop kits so that parents can teach one another about how to spark productive discussions on digital safety and citizenship.” The project is launching as part of October’s National Cybersecurity Awareness and National Bullying Prevention Month.
Participating schools will receive free Google Pixelbook laptops for parents and their kids, as well as presentation materials — in both English and Spanish — to teach students about online safety, fostering positive digital experiences, and tailoring internet use to meet specific family needs. Google is also awarding $1,000 grants to local PTAs in every state in the US that participate in the initiative. Those interested in participating for one of the 200 grants or a Google Pixelbook kit can apply through the National PTA website.