Morcombes launch game to combat predator threat
THIS is one computer game parents won't mind their children getting stuck into.
Yesterday, Bruce and Denise Morcombe launched the latest version of Orbit Rescue, a tablet game designed to protect children from online predators.
"It's very easy to use, it's a very fun activity and it's targeting all children but primarily eight-to-10 year olds," Bruce said.
"Certainly within Orbit Rescue, it is all about teaching the kids a fun activity but at the same time learning about their body clues, about potentially what predators get up to in their grooming techniques, such as language of special gifts or items and tricking kids into different situations within the home, within the school environment or indeed online."
The spaceship-themed game was designed by the University of the Sunshine Coast's Professor Christian Jones and his team of game developers, and included input from social workers, psychologists and police.
"It was originally developed as a desktop game to be used in schools, and since then has been used by more than 500 schools in 25 different countries," Professor Jones said.
Are kids given enough education about staying safe?
This poll ended on 24 March 2017.
Yes, schools are much better at teaching stranger danger these days.
No, more effort needs to go into developing resources like Orbit Rescue.
These lessons should be taught at home, not school.
This is not a scientific poll. The results reflect only the opinions of those who chose to participate.
Principal of Chancellor State College's primary campus Mark Birchall said although it's still early days, he had noticed some promising results.
"I think one thing we can say with certainty is that the confidence (the kids) have now surrounding these issues which empowers them," he said.
"The concern is the power difference between children and adults, but this allows kids to address that difference by learning that things like code words, trusted adults and communication are very important."
Chancellor student Jasmine Blosham said she wasn't sure about what she was learning, but she liked robot games and thought this one was "cool and fun".
Her nine-year-old classmate Brandon Ryan added he liked the variety of activities you could do on the game.
"It's really good and I learned you're not alone if you're getting hassled," he said.
Orbit Rescue is available for free on Apple and android devices.
For more information, visit www.orbitrescue.com.au.