Book Review: A book for children about the risks associated with making friends online.
A short overview of this book
Chicken Clicking by Jeanne Willis is a children’s book that parents can use to teach kids about the dangers of using the internet to make new friends.
This is another book that can be helpful when talking to kids about staying safe online. Cybersafety is a lesson that kids need to be taught about from a younger age.
This book starts off by talking about all the fun things you can do online, like shopping and buying things for yourself and other people. It then goes into the other things that you can do online, like meeting people and making new friends. The chicken makes a new friend who looks really nice and then goes to meet them (without telling it’s parents). And of course, on arriving, the friend is a fox and not the person they expected to see!
This book is written and illustrated by two well-known authors and illustrators, which means that the story is fun to read and look at.
This book is more of a story than an educational book. So it talks about how the chicken took a photo of themselves and posted it online with their name, but it doesn’t acknowledge that this is risky and what they should have done instead. So be prepared to stop and talk as you read this book, and ask your child what would they do or what could the chicken have done instead. And keep on asking them ‘why’.
So there are many possible conversations to be had with this book. You could talk about how online shopping can be fun, but you still need to pay for it! Or you could chat about impulse buying or the fact that it might look lovely online, but in reality, it might look very differently.
You could talk about not posting photos of yourself online, and to not share your real name, where you live or where you go to school. Plus your family rules about going into chatrooms or having private conversations with people you don’t know.
You could talk about your family rules for making friends online ie is it allowed? And if it’s allowed, under what conditions? Plus you could also talk about the fact that we can pretend to be someone else online, and that it is impossible to know if someone is being honest or not. And that it is unsafe to meet up with an online friend in real life.
What’s the ideal age for this book?
Chicken Clicking by Jeanne Willis is ideal for children between the ages of 5 – 9 years of age.
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Where can you buy a copy of this book?
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You can find more books like this in my extensive list of Sex Education Books for Children.
Have a look through the book