Even young people sometimes fall victim to online scams, unsuspectingly giving away too much personal information. The results can be seriously damaging. Teacher Jessie Storrs has created a computer game designed to teach students valuable lessons about privacy.
Storrs is the Librarian Media Teacher at El Centro Jr./Sr. High School, a Sacramento County Office of Education (SCOE) Juvenile Court School program at the Sacramento County Youth Detention Facility. She has created a video game called “The Technology Trail,” designed to help students learn about privacy protection, scams, misinformation, and how to avoid oversharing information.
In the step-by-step game, students are asked to fill out a simulated internship application. They are asked a series of questions and have to determine if that application is legitimate or a scam. Students can “choose their own adventures” in the game, but they have to make their own decisions about what might be unsafe.
“Students navigate their social media and they get pegged with a lot of misinformation—issues with rumors and phishing scams, and things like that—and they have to make sure they are really making the right decisions,” Storrs said.
The game helps students assess their online decisions, decide whether information is true or false, and avoid being victimized by someone trying to collect personal information.