Cyberbullying is a common phrase heard in today's society, and we don't often hear about positive experiences associated with kids and social media.
While parents should always be involved in monitoring social media involving their children and teaching kids to be safe online, there are some very real benefits when allowing a tween or teen to participate in social media.
Whether you allow kids on Snapchat, Twitter, Facebook or Instagram, there are some positives that can come out of the relationship with tweens and kids using social media.
They're Not Alone When teens have an interest, whether it's painting, reading or music, there are others they can connect with online who share those interests.
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Often, it makes them feel like they're not alone in the way they feel or think. If they're in a family full of sports-oriented individuals, they can get some feedback and support from people who share their interest in solitary pursuits like writing. It can also provide genuine support to kids who are struggling with serious issues of sexual identity or with an unusual subject that makes them feel like an outsider.
Sharing and Collaborating Artistically Kid friendly social media like Instagram, Facebook or Flickr can give teens feedback on artistic projects like painting, singing or creating their own music.
There are plenty of people they can get inspiration from as well as people they can collaborate with online. It don't matter what their artistic interests are. There are photography, painting and writing groups they can join on Facebook as well as other platforms to share their work and get feedback. As adults, many artistic individuals love to become mentors, and teens are always looking to soak up information provided by knowledgeable and talented people.
Assignments and Projects Along with artistic collaborations and sharing interests with others online, they can connect with other kids in school for assignments or projects. A social media platform like Kik messenger allows them to send free texts to other kids in their class to find out assignments if they've been absent or schedule a date for studying. This can strengthen their relationships with classmates as well as help them find new friends they might not connect with outside of a school environment normally.
Charitable Projects Teens might be looking for a way to contribute to their community, but don't know where they're needed most. Like adults, they want to do something great for others, but are not always sure where they should spend their time or talents. On their social media accounts, socially-conscious teens can learn of the latest projects and charities that need the most help, or search for opportunities in their own community by following accounts or pages in their city. From donating school supplies to kids who don't have the money for them to cleaning up a local park, it might surprise people to learn that teens are looking for a way to help their community.
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Learn About Others When teens are online talking to people from various countries around the world, they are learning about other cultures and backgrounds. They can benefit from the knowledge they gain talking to and connecting with people who are different than they are. It gives them a better understanding of others and a tolerance that will take them far in life. Along with talking to other teens from across the world, they can check out their profiles and find out information about the user that can be valuable when talking and interacting with others.
Teenagers and social media might not seem like a great mix to most parents when they hear about the negatives it can bring. Tweens and kids using social media can be a great way to expose children to some positive experiences they can't get without social media platforms.