Filling Out a Form — Ask First

Download Student Sheet(s) for printout in PDF format.


Students learn that many Web sites have enticing offers in exchange for information and discuss how to responsibly handle such offers.


  • Recognize Web forms requesting private information
  • Recall never to submit private information to a site—even one with a favorite character—without a parent's permission

National Educational Technology Standards for Students © 2007

Source: International Society for Technology in Education
  1. Digital Citizenship
    1. advocate and practice safe, legal, and responsible use of information and technology.
    2. exhibit leadership for digital citizenship.

Home Connection

Download the Home Connection sheet related to this lesson.

Site Preview

No Internet sites are used in this lesson.


  • Activity Sheet (1)


  • Invite students to name a favorite movie or cartoon character. Ask: What would you do if (name of a character) asked you to send him or her your name and phone number? Students may be ambivalent about what to do, arguing that such characters are their friends.

Teach 1

  • List students' favorite characters. Next to each character, write the name of the company, product, or brand associated with it. For example, a television cartoon character could be linked with the network on which it is shown.
  • Explain that these characters are sometimes used to sell things and to make people feel good about a product or brand.

Teach 2

  • Distribute the activity sheet and explain that one of their favorite characters might ask them to join a club such as this. Make sure they understand that they are looking at a form they might see in cyberspace.
  • Ask: What do kids who fill in and send the form get on their birthdays? (free popcorn samples and coupons)
  • Have students look over the form, identifying the various kinds of private information requested. (all, except age and birthday) Make sure students know that their name, address, school name, E-mail address, phone number, passwords, parent's place of work, and photos of themselves are private information.
  • Discuss the appealing characteristics of the form. Ask: What makes you want to fill out the form? Point out that although they may like certain characters and the offers they make, they should treat them as strangers.


  • Ask: What is the purpose of forms like the one on the activity sheet? (to collect private information at a Web site)
  • Ask:What should you do if you want to fill in such a form? (Ask a parent's permission before giving any private information to a site.)


The following activity can be added for students who completed this lesson in a previous grade.
  • Have pairs of students take turns role playing in front of the class. One student, as a favorite character, tries to get the “child” to fill in a Web form. Encourage the student playing the “child” to come up with creative ways to resist all offers, explaining that permission must be obtained from a parent.

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