Session 1- Berners-Lee: Answers for Young People

My first experience of the World Wide Web (WWW) was having the computer connected to the phone line, meaning no one would be able to call the house phone and my mum getting very annoyed by it! I don’t remember using the Web at all when I was in KS1, only when I got to KS2 I remember using the it in years 5 & 6 for doing lots of research for projects we were doing and that’s about it. However, at that time I still found it very fun using the computer and the Web for my school projects. I always enjoyed using ICT for my work whilst at school as it was a different way to learn back then, whereas now it is vital that we have computers and the Web for our university and school courses.

In Year 6 I was introduced by my friend, to a website called ‘Neopets’ which I became addicted to! This was a virtual pet website that connected with other users, which allowed you to play games (some were educational!) and you could communicate with your friends.

 When I got to secondary school I found that we still used the Web mainly for research, and for revision and self study tasks to do at home. Although in ICT lessons we focused a lot on making Web pages in year 9. During this year I would often go home every day and turn my laptop on and make my own website on ‘Piczo’. This is a website which allows users to make their own web pages and be able to view other people’s. I also very much enjoyed spending my free time on ‘MSN’, ‘Bebo’ and ‘Facebook’ when I was in year 9 to year 11 to communicate with friends, and this was what I would use the Web for mostly in those days. I have always found it relatively easy to navigate computers and the Web from a young age.

 Going into placement last year I found that children are starting to use computers and the Web a lot more frequently from a young age. This may be because the computer technology is expanding at a very fast pace and most parents are up to date with all of the new technology, making it easier for children to have access to these things.

 Although the Web can be used for bad things, I agree with Berners-Lee when he states that “what is made of the Web is up to us”. I believe this means that people decide what to put up on the Web and people decide what they want to view on the Web. I think that the Web was an excellent creation and that it is something that will be used effectively for many, many years to help people learn and communicate with each other. I think it is very important to tell children the risks of the Web from an early age and reinforcing this continuously so that children can work and play safely on the Web at all times!  

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