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Teachers: PSHE: Behaviour Risks

Last Updated: Monday January 10 2005 16:59 GMT

Mobile phone safety

PSHE 11-14/KS3/Levels E&F
Risks of behaviour


Mobile phone (publicity shot)
Street crime is higher in January, so to stop children becoming victims, the government has come up with a series of lessons in personal safety.

How can students protect themselves and their property?

Learning aims
  • Learn how to protect your property especially MP3 players and mobile phones.
  • Recognise the different crime risks associated with different types of mobile phone use.
  • Learn how to reduce your chances of being a victim of phone crime.

Read out this story to the class

Amir Khan

Ask students:

Why is street crime higher in January? Thieves target people who have been given MP3 players and mobile phones as Christmas presents.

What advice do experts give to keep your possessions safe?

  • Don't walk and text
  • Keep valuables out of sight
  • Do up bags, wallets and purses
  • Don't keep valuables together
  • Plan journeys to try to travel with others
  • Be alert and aware of your surroundings

    Print out a copy of this quiz for each student. There are 10 questions about mobile phone safety.
    Mobile phone

    If students have internet access they can do the quiz online and check their own results. They can also vote on phone safety issues online.


    1 -B -3 minutes
    2 -B - IMEI
    3 -B -*#06#
    4 -A -don't upgrade
    5 -C -customize it
    6 -A -vibrate
    7 -A -lock keypad
    8 -B -hidden
    9 -A - walk and talk
    10 -C - hand it over

    Main activity

    Imaginary Crimewatch

    Ask the students in small groups to come up with a Crimewatch style description of a mobile phone robbery near the school, they must describe all aspects of the crime, for example:

    • What the victim wore
    • Where they came from
    • Where they were going
    • What time it was
    • What the muggers looked like
    • What made the victim vulnerable
    Students feedback the risk factors. If time allows they can act out the robbery using a Crimewatch style voiceover.

    Extension activity

    Prepare a letter to the school magazine or local paper explaining how students can keep their mobiles safe.


    Make a poster directed at younger students explaining how they should behave to stay safe when walking home from school.


    Carrying a phone can make you safer by keeping you in touch with parents and friends - but it also puts you at risk of robbery and even violence. How will students decide if the risk is worth taking?

    Teachers' Background

    In 2000/1, an estimated 710,000 mobile phones were stolen in the UK. That's nearly 2,000 phones a day.

    • People under 18 accounted for 48 per cent of the victims.
    • A third of the people stealing mobile phones were aged 15 or 16.
    • 66 per cent of mobile phone robberies were carried out by people working in groups.
    • 49 per cent of all street crime in London involved the theft of a mobile phone.
    • 28 per cent of all robberies involved a mobile phone.
    Chairman of the Youth Justice Board, Lord Warner, said the figures indicated an "extremely worrying phenomenon" of large numbers of young people committing crimes on their peers.

    A study published by the Home Office on 8 Febrruary, 2002 estimated the overall number of stolen mobiles was more than double the 330,000 figure officially recorded by police.

    The total number of phone robberies is thought to have risen almost threefold in five years, but mobile phone ownership is also rising rapidly.

    Schoolchildren - often targeted by other youths - are at least five times more likely to be targeted by mobile phone thieves than adults.

    Some of the robberies involve violence. On 1 Jan, 2002, a 19-year-old woman was shot in the head by a mugger who was trying to steal her mobile phone.

    Research carried out by the NOP Research Group in January 2002 suggested nearly 50 per cent of all children in the UK aged between seven and 16 owned mobile phones.

    • The survey found 52 per cent of girls and 44 per cent of boys had their own mobile.

    Mobile ownership for kids aged seven to ten doubled in the three years up to 2004.

    For hundreds more news-based lesson plans, click on Teachers on the left hand side.

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