200,000 children have learned about cyber bullying

Norway’s biggest school tour against cyber bullying, Use Your Head, has reached an important milestone: 200,000 pupils have now learnt about how to prevent bullying. 96 per cent of the teachers believe the tour can prevent instances of online bullying.

Written: Jan 2016

Use Your Head (Bruk Hue) is Norway’s biggest school tour against online bullying, and is run by Telenor together with the Norwegian Media Authority, Kids and Media, and the Norwegian Red Cross through its Kors på halsen [Cross My Heart] helpline for children.

Since 2009, Use Your Head has visited more than 700 schools and spoken about cyber bullying and general online know-how to almost an entire generation of young people and their parents. 2015 was an important year for the programme as it upgraded its existing presentations, launched new talks for upper primary school children and changed its appearance.  

Teachers think it is useful

A survey of 49 teachers who have experienced Use Your Head shows that they believe in this method of addressing cyber bullying. 96 per cent said that Use Your Head’s message is useful for them in their positions as teachers, while 100 per cent believed Use Your Head was useful for pupils. Additionally, 96 per cent of teachers believed that Use Your Head presentations can prevent instances of online bullying.

“This is excellent feedback to receive. We’re working systematically together with our partners the Norwegian Media Authority, Kids and Media and the Norwegian Red Cross to update the content in our talks, and this feedback from teachers shows we are doing something that is both right and important. This gives us the motivation to continue developing Use Your Head during 2016,” says Ana Brodtkorb, Head of Corporate Responsibility and Sustainability at Telenor Norway and the Project Manager for Use Your Head.

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Separate presentation for upper primary school pupils

In 2015, Use Your Head was relaunched with updated presentations for secondary school pupils and a separate, brand new talk for 6th and 7th graders. A survey carried by Opinion on behalf of Telenor shows that 11 and 12 year olds are very active on social media. One in three children have received hurtful messages online or via their mobile, with many of these coming to them on Snapchat.

“We are noticing that increasingly younger children are logging onto the net on the bus, at school and at home – and we know that 90 per cent of all 10 year olds have a smartphone. That’s why it’s only natural for us to respond to this development by offering Use Your Head to upper primary school pupils too,” says Kjellaug Tonheim Tønnesen, an adviser at Kids and Media.

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Bullies got in touch

The new presentation for upper primary school pupils was launched at the Telenor Arena in October in front of 7300 11 and 12 year olds. Feedback from their teachers showed that 90 per cent of pupils were interested in the topics raised after the talk, and more than 30 per cent of pupils sought out their teachers to talk about cyber bullying afterwards.

Use Your Head partner organisation, Kors på halsen, the Norwegian Red Cross’ phone counselling service for children and young people, noticed an increase in traffic to their channels following the event.

“The average age of people contacting us is 14-15 years old, but following the event at the Telenor Arena, we saw an increase in the number of enquiries from 11 and 12 year olds who had been present. Several of them said they had been unkind to others online and regretted it – it’s unusual for us to hear the bully’s side of the story in cases of bullying. This confirms that we are reaching our new target audience, which gives us the motivation to reach out to 200,000 pupils,” says Head of Kors på halsen Nelli Kongshaug.

For more information, please go to www.brukhue.com