An Educator’s Journey to Teaching Cybersafety | Plan International Skip to main content

An Educator’s Journey to Teaching Cybersafety

Teaching can be challenging; it takes a lot of patience to teach different subjects to young students, let alone teach about Internet safety. The concept of online safety can be deemed as a new subject matter, but Ryan Dorol of Tondo, a Senior High School educator at Young Focus Foundation and a barangay personnel, proves otherwise.

“The way I teach my students about Internet safety is not only seasonal. I include it in my lectures as a routine. Before I begin my lectures we would have a session of reminders and one of which is about the responsible use of the internet and other things relating to it.”

Ryan shares that besides teaching his assigned subjects, he also educates his students on online safety with the use of Plan International Philippines’ videos, and sharing of real-life scenarios and pictures that are relatable and easily understandable.

When asked what the most important lesson he learned from the Cyber Safe Spaces Project is and how he applies it as an educator, Ryan answered, “The most important thing I learned from the Cyber Safe Spaces Project was my awareness on the issues concerning OSAEC. In addition to this, I became aware of the laws in relation to the issue that protect the welfare of our children when using the internet.”

However, just as learning comes with hardships, Ryan Dorol shares the challenges he faced as a Senior High School teacher, “The never-ending change of students’ mentality from childhood to adolescence to eventual adulthood; In these parts of their lives, they are often unpredictable with their behaviors, they are overly-sensitive, that’s why as educators we should be ready for the students and encourage them to have more positive outlook and feelings.”

Ryan shares that some of his students do not share their true feelings with their parents. This is why he is friendly to them and tries to gain their trust by being non-judgmental.

Despite the challenges Ryan faces everyday as an educator, his passion for shaping young minds is the drive that keeps him going. 

“What I will never forget about the project besides the enjoyable and useful training about cyber safety is when we rolled out the project with our beneficiaries, students, and parents. In those moments we found out as facilitators of Young Focus Foundation that there are many youth and parents that are not even aware of Online Sexual Abuse and Exploitation of Children. And because of these roll-outs, we found out that I do have a student who had an experience of online sexual abuse.”

“All of the students we taught about the issue apply their learning in their everyday Internet use. Before the rollouts started, we often saw posts from them that were not well-meaning. Now they are more careful because we talk to them and they have become smarter in posting about many things as well as chatting with people. You know, netiquette.”

Ryan Dorol is certain that the students he has educated on online safety will apply their learnings in real-life. They can definitely be considered a win in our tireless work of keeping our youth safe online and offline.