Media EducationImages of war and incitement: How to help children and young people process them

Abused women, armed kidnappings, frightened children - the terrorist attack on Israel shocks and polarizes. In social media such as TikTok and video portals such as YouTube, children and young people can come across disturbing depictions of violence as well as anti-Semitic and anti-Muslim propaganda. We provide information on how you can help children and young people to categorize and process what is happening.

Videos and images of Hamas' terrorist attack on Israel are currently circulating on social media. They show young women, couples and families being forcibly abducted. There is also footage of sexual violence against young women. Older footage of Israeli soldiers brutally attacking minors is used in a deliberate attempt to relativize the attack. Young users of social media services can identify with the victims particularly easily because of their age.

Children and young people need support in classifying and processing incriminating images or comments. The discussion of the war and the Middle East conflict is currently also playing a major role in schools. In addition to parents and guardians, teachers are important contact persons for adolescents. How can teachers address the war in the classroom? How can they strengthen children and young people in dealing with disinformation and promote media and democratic competence?

Our information sheets summarize the most important tips and links for parents and teachers. The info sheets can be downloaded free of charge from klicksafe.

Info sheets on how to deal with images and news about war

Media education in times of war - a challenge for parents. What should parents pay more attention to now? Where can children and young people get safe information and support? Our info sheet provides answers.

How can war be addressed in the classroom? What media skills are important for students in this context? Our information sheet provides support for educational professionals.

How can we protect children from explicit images of war?

Age-appropriate news

Above all, children need access to age-appropriate news content. You can find a compilation of good offerings in our infosheets. Adult news can easily overwhelm and frighten children. Parents and teachers should keep in touch with children and young people about what they have seen in the media. It is often enough to ask interested questions and offer to be a discussion partner.

Child-friendly search engines

Unfortunately, drastic depictions of war can also be found on the Internet. It is important for younger children to have age-appropriate access to the Internet. When searching for information, for example, children should use children's search engines such as Frag Finn and Blinde Kuh. This is because the common search engines for adults show problematic search results even with strict SafeSearch settings.

Reporting options

Finally, it can help to teach children and young people that they can defend themselves. For example, anyone who is confronted with disturbing content on social media can report this content to the service and thus protect others from this unpleasant experience. Complaints can be made to and the Internet complaints office. Offer younger children that you can help with a report if it doesn't work yet on your own.