CYBER @ Home

CYBER @ Home

Description

Keep the cyber learning going at home!

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Cyber @ Home
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These are challenging times for everyone—parents, students, and teachers. However, you are not alone in this. Even though school may be closed, CYBER.ORG can help cyber and STEM learning continue. Below, our team of curriculum specialists has curated a set of lessons and resources to support students’ curiosity and creativity while they are not in the classroom. These are the same lessons used by more than 17,000 teachers across the country from all 50 states and three U.S. territories, and the content meets required standards for learning in more than 25 states. CYBER.ORG develops and distributes this curriculum through a grant from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Cybersecurity Infrastructure and Security Agency (CISA)

There is something here for everyone with fun, project-based activities for elementary, middle, and high school students. Teachers may use these lessons to make assignments to their students for remote learning. Parents can download lessons for their children to explore at home. We’ll continue to update this page with new lessons throughout this period of social distancing.

To view the lessons, click the activity title to expand the block for a brief description, supplies required, and links to any documentation that may be required. If you have any questions about how to use this content, please reach out to us at Facebook: @cyberdotorg Twitter: @cyber_dot_org, and YouTube: CYBER.ORG

Click here to watch our Webinar where our curricula team and Palo Alto Networks introduce the page and some of the activities.

About CYBER.ORG : Through a grant from the US Department of Homeland Security’s CISA office, CYBER.ORG develops and distributes curriculum to teachers across the country.

Below is the list of activities we’ve curated. Click the activity title to expand the block for a brief description, supplies required and links to any documentation that may be required.

Section Title
All Grade Levels
Accordion Items
Title
Pringles Can Enigma
Content

Make your own Enigma Machine, the famous encryption device used during World War II. This fun activity puts encryption/decryption methods in a historical context and also can lead to discussions about how modern day encryption technology works.

Activity link: https://cyber.org/enigma/

Supplies: Printer, Paper, Pringles Can, Tape, Scissors

Instruction video link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8CsYBKnYNmk&feature=youtu.be

Title
Fact or Fake Website
Content

In the days of fake news and social media sharing frenzies, we take a look at whether images and news are fact or fake. This lesson encourages shrewd thinking, touches on responsible digital citizenship and how to spot misinformation. Feel free to discuss the dangers of fake news and the importance of not believing everything you see/read/hear.

Activity Link: https://triviaboss.com/real-or-fake/

Supplies: Internet

Discussion Questions:

  • Why do you think someone might edit or modify pictures?
  • Have you seen any of these or similar pictures on social media?
  • How do you feel about photo editing and could this effect public opinions and reactions?

Advanced Questions:

  • Should Google, Facebook, and other media companies ban articles from organizations known to publish fake news?
  • How could this censorship impact our democracy?
  • What do you believe the role of a “free press” is in a democracy?
  • Should there be limits on what they can report on?
  • What are the effects of believing articles that you can not analyze at the original source of the content? 
  • What is the impact on society when citizens live in echo chambers of news?
  • How does reading only one source of news impact one’s civic decision making?
  • What is the impact of believing theories that have been repudiated by multiple reliable organizations, scientists, or other trustworthy authorities?
  • Find six examples of fake news, fake images, conspiracy theories, and fake science articles that you think some people might believe. Show them to a parent, other adult, or friend. Ask them if they think they are believable. Record their responses.
Title
Pigpen Cipher
Content

This activity touches on encryption and decryption, common tasks all cybersecurity professionals must be familiar with, though today’s version is much, much, MUCH simpler than current methodology. Similar to the Enigma activity, this is an older, simpler form of encryption / decryption, but it still has important themes that stand the test of time.

Activity Link

Supplies: Paper, Writing Device

Video Explanation: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jTMTBCP2P7A&feature=youtu.be

Discussion Questions:

  • What kinds of messages would be important to encrypt before sending?
  • Can you write a message to a friend or family member using the Pigpen Cipher? (Teach them how to decode the message and see if they can write a note back to you.)
  • Try creating your own cipher so you can send coded messages to your friends that only they can understand.
Title
Algorithm Activity
Content

This activity breaks down what an algorithm is in an understandable and usable way. Basically an algorithm is a detailed step-by-step instruction set or formula for solving a problem or completing a task. In computing, programmers write algorithms that instruct the computer how to perform a task.

Technically algorithms are everywhere, not just in computing. Other things that could be considered an algorithm are a recipe for making food or the process of cleaning dishes or a bedroom. And of course the methods used to solve math problems are algorithms!

This is a great way to introduce topics of coding and how computers process information.

Activity Link

Supplies: Paper, Writing Device, Printer (not required but helpful)

Title
Specificity Game
Content

This activity is a great way to introduce students to how programming works. In this game, one participant plays the part of the programmer and the other plays the part of the computer.

The “programmer” is given a grid with a design on it while the “computer” is given the same grid, just blank and without the design. The “computer” should not see the design given to the “programmer.”

Instructions:

  • The “programmer” describes how to draw the design on their grid.
  • The “computer” draws the design on their blank grid based on the instructions given by the programmer.
  • The computer CAN ONLY say “repeat the last instruction,” “wait,” and “ready for the next instruction.”
  • Once the “programmer” has given all instructions and the “computer” has completed drawing, compare the two designs.

Activity Links:

Grid with designs 

Blank Grid 

Supplies: Paper, Writing Device, Printer – not required but helpful

Discussion Questions:

  • Was it more difficult for you in the role of the programmer or the computer? 
  • What did you learn about giving directions? 
  • Why are good communication skills necessary for computer science?
Title
Scratch Activities
Content

Use this online platform from MIT to try your hand at beginners’ level drag-and-drop programming activities. Be sure to use the Programming Design Process as you create your programs!

Activity Links:

Scratch Website – https://scratch.mit.edu/

Activity Guide

Programming Design Process Printable

Blank Programming Design Process Worksheet

Supplies: Internet

Title
Cipher Disk Encryption Challenge
Content

Create a cipher disk to encrypt and decrypt your own secret messages. 

Activity Links:

Activity Printable

Blank Cipher Disk Template

Supplies: Internet

Title
Cyber Response - A Cybersecurity Board Game
Content

Do you have what it takes to save your country? As skilled members of an elite, cybersecurity response operation, you must keep ransomware outbreaks at bay while developing decryption keys that render the attacks ineffective and allow for the recovery of stolen data.

Operating remotely from Network Defense Centers, you and your teammates will travel through network connections across the country, responding to cyber attacks, restoring servers from backups and gathering intel necessary to develop the decryption keys.

You must work as a team, utilizing your professional strengths to succeed. But time is not on your side, as cyber attacks continue to happen, causing network failures and spreading ransomware. Can you discover all decryption keys in time?

The fate of the country is in your hands!

Activity Link

Supplies: Paper, Printer

Section Title
Elementary Students
Accordion Items
Title
STEAM Fundamentals Habitats
Content

This unit is meant to give students a fun way to explore science at home. Parents or caregivers can overview the module before beginning. Depending on the time you have and the personality and age of your child/children, use any parts or activities you would like.

Choose any materials that you may have around the house for hands on activities. Materials listed do not need to be exact. Find anything available that is similar and may work.

Families are encouraged to work on this together. It is age appropriate for a wide variety of grade levels, and there will be times for family discussions. Younger students will need more assistance.

Activity Links:

Parent/Teacher Guide 

Student Guide 

Supplies: Internet (optional), Printer, Colored Pencils, Lined Paper, some sort of cup

Title
Keep It Safe Matching Game
Content

Match objects with the best ways to keep them safe. Then, challenge yourself to a game of memory match!

Families are encouraged to work on this together and make it fun! Compete against each other in timed matching challenges.

Activity Printable

Supplies: Printer, Scissors

Discussion Questions:

  • How do you or your parents protect your devices or keep others from using them?
  • How would you feel if something you owned got damaged, lost, or stolen?
  • What are some things you could do to keep your personal electronic devices more secure? 
Section Title
Middle School Students
Accordion Items
Title
Computational Thinking
Content

This lesson explores mathematics and computational thinking in science and engineering through a classic  aerospace lesson. Students will design, build, and test a paper airplane to see which one flies the farthest.  

Students will record data from their prototype test flights in a table and provide detailed written instructions on  how to fold the paper airplane. Other participants will follow the instructions in an attempt to build an identical plane and get the same results. 

Activity link

Supplies: Internet, a few pieces of regular copy paper

Additional Resource Links for optional historical context/research:

Title
Cyber Society - Media Literacy
Content

This lesson explores the concept of fake news and its impact on every day life. “Fake news” stories, from silly stories about sightings of the Loch Ness Monster to serious allegations of crimes by public officials, have recently made the news. People have even debated how much influence fake news might have had on the 2016 U.S. presidential election. Even the definition of the term “fake news” is open to debate. Later in the lesson we’ll look at the role of journalism in a democracy and how we can improve our media literacy habits.

Activity Link

Supplies: Internet

Section Title
High School Students
Accordion Items
Title
Cyber Literacy - 4th Amendment
Content

In this activity, students will work through a variety of opportunities to learn about the 4th
Amendment to the US Constitution; how it has been used throughout history, how it has adapted to modern times, and what might be some issues that we haven’t thought about yet.

Activity Link

Guided Content Walk-through: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xT7EjVxjcIc

Google Drive Link (for Guided Content Walk-through follow along): https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/1lgL5KMCXOwx84V4e_3cAWVPyMyJGLZ7y

Title
Cyber Society - Media Literacy
Content

This lesson explores the concept of fake news and its impact on every day life. “Fake news” stories, from silly stories about sightings of the Loch Ness Monster to serious allegations of crimes by public officials, have recently made the news. People have even debated how much influence fake news might have had on the 2016 U.S. presidential election. Even the definition of the term “fake news” is open to debate. Later in the lesson we’ll look at the role of journalism in a democracy and how we can improve our media literacy habits.

Activity Link

Supplies: Internet

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PANW

Section Title
Featured Partner Content: Palo Alto Networks
Accordion Items
Title
Palo Alto Cyber A.C.E.S. Activities
Content

Palo Alto Networks, a global cybersecurity leader, is focused on protecting our digital way of life. Their Cyber A.C.E.S. – Activities in Cybersecurity Education for Students – program works to demystify cybersecurity through interactive learning, equipping kids ages 5 to 15 with an understanding of how to protect their digital future.

Cyber A.C.E.S. provides the cybersecurity basics students need to have safer online experiences and become good digital citizens. Lessons are designed so they can be facilitated by anyone, regardless of their knowledge level, with each module tailored to a specific age group.

*Note this content is free to access and use*

Activity link: https://start.paloaltonetworks.com/cyber-aces.html

Supplies: Internet

Title
Cybersecurity Foundations - Self-Paced Course
Content

Through cooperation with Palo Alto Networks, CYBER.ORG, and Moonami Learning Solutions, this Foundation course is freely available to all learners effected by the Coronavirus pandemic who are seeking to gain cybersecurity knowledge as well as career exploration in the cybersecurity industry.

By working through the 7 course modules, students will learn the fundamentals of Cybersecurity and identify concepts required to recognize and potentially mitigate attacks against enterprise networks as well as mission critical infrastructure. After completing each of the 7 module quizzes with an 80% or higher grade, students will receive a student certificate of completion signed by the CEO and Chairman of Palo Alto Networks.

Activity Link

*note: you must create a free Moodle account to access the material*

Supplies: Internet

Title
Complex Passwords with Zuky Video
Content

Elementary students can learn what a password is and why it’s important with Zuky the Robot – the newest Cyber hero at Palo Alto Network- during the Complex Passwords YouTube video.

*Note this content is free to access and use*

Activity link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R3e4K9Impds&list=PLZ1IjQtA2fL11yY06-HnpsrJifRsYoeFq&index=2

Supplies: Internet

Title
Tricky Links with Zuky Video
Content

Elementary students learn how to spot suspicious emails with Zuky the Robot – the newest Cyber hero at Palo Alto Network – during the Tricky Links YouTube Video.

*Note this content is free to access and use*

Activity link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R3e4K9Impds&list=PLZ1IjQtA2fL11yY06-HnpsrJifRsYoeFq&index=2

Supplies: Internet

Title
Watch Your Devices! with Zuky Video
Content

Elementary students learn why they need to keep their physical devices safe with Zuky the Robot – the newest Cyber hero at Palo Alto Network – during the WatchYour Devices! YouTube Video.

*Note this content is free to access and use*

Activity link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XfMZDBiBDOI&list=PLZ1IjQtA2fL11yY06-HnpsrJifRsYoeFq&index=3

Supplies: Internet

Title
Introduction to Cybersecurity Course
Content

Intended for high schoolers, this self-paced digital learning course features narrated content, interactions, demonstrations, and knowledge checks. Go to the Palo Alto Networks Learning Center, register as a “Guest,” and search for Introduction to Cybersecurity (EDU-010).

*Note this content is free to access and use*

Activity link: https://paloaltonetworks.csod.com/LMS/catalog/Welcome.aspx?tab_page_id=-67&tab_id=20000157

Supplies: Internet

Title
Cybersecurity Survivor Guide
Content

Intended for high schoolers, this 250-page book (PDF) corresponds to the Introduction to cybersecurity digital learning course listed above. It contains three modules: 1. Cybersecurity Foundations 2. Cybersecurity Gateway (Introduction to Networking), and 3. Cybersecurity Essentials (Introduction to Network Security)

*Note this content is free to access and use*

Activity link: https://www.paloaltonetworks.com/resources/techbriefs/cybersecurity-survival-guide

Supplies: Internet

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