Social Media and Children’s Behavior

As a mom to young children, I always find myself torn between “Do I let my kids have the IPad, or don’t I.” That’s the ongoing question, or should I say argument…

When I was kid, I was told, “Turn the tv off and go play outside!” It wasn’t turn the Ipad / Youtube/ T.V/ Videogames controllers/ Cell Phone.. The options are endless these days on where we need to plug our mind to. What happened to using our imagination? Going outside and being adventurous?

We need to encourage our kids to put the technology
Image:https://phys.org/news/2017-07-kids-social-media-bad-news.html

Positive Effects

Yes, I suppose there is some positive to it all… Technology and social media are growing at a rapid rate, our children must be educated properly on the positive impacts of  social media and how to navigate their ways through all the cluster.

-Students are able to have more options to classes, by taking courses online and being able to communicate through discussions and chat groups to engage and share ideas with larger audiences. Online classes also benefit kids that are physically unable to get to a class room on a regular basis or at all, but still being able to continue their education.

-Social Media platforms that allow kids to connect with others that have the same interests or hobbies.

-Connecting with others, especially family and friends all over the globe. From emails and chat rooms, to photos and videos and Skype and Facetime. We can stay in touch so easily now, no matter where you live.

Negative Effects

This is where my spouse and I constantly have the battle, where he thinks it’s all negative, but with control and guidance it’s important to educate, so social media doesn’t cause negative effects.

Addiction, its real. We all know as adults how easily we can be wrapped up in swiping and searching and maybe creeping (we all do it, just admit it).

Addiction gets in the way of relationships, school, and activities. Not only is it wasting a lot of time, but also causing mental health issues, and effecting social skills by not being able to put the phones down and live in the moment. I have seen many times at events or family dinners where they are videoing or taking photos throughout the entire time. Instead savour the moments with family or that Awesome concert you’re going to, yes take a photo or two for memories, but be there with your own eyes, not through the lens of your phone.

-Selfies, “let’s take a selfie”. Especially in girls, who are always conscious of their looks. Editing photos and tracking to see how many ‘likes’ they get on their photos becomes an obsession and they are selfie addicts.

-Cyber Bullying, not just bullying anymore. It’s easier to be mean through the screen then it is in person. Children can also become targets for stalking as well. It’s important to teach our children not to post to much private information online.

What can we do to help our kids?

As parents we always want what’s best for our kids, we need to educate them, and beware of what they are doing.

  • Monitor how much time they are spending on social media platforms
  • For young children, restricting them to sites that are appropriate for their age group, and set time limits for how long they are on screens.
  • Explain the importance of still having social interactions with friends not just chatting online and commenting on each other’s posts.
  • Suggest platforms that could enhance their learning or communicate with others of similar interests.

Social Media is growing at a fast rate, and it’s difficult to keep up, but we need to educate our children to monitor how much time they are spending online, and what they are doing to make sure they are managing their time appropriately, to still incorporate other things in their day like socializing with friends doing other activities, or maybe having a family conversation over dinner and asking how everyone’s’ day was?! What are your families thoughts on social media and phones during family time?

– “Your kids and social media” http://kirkcameron.com/kids- social-media/

“Oversharenting”://twitter.com/ABC/status/1131801770840268800

References: Mrunal.(2018, May 4).”Impact of Social Media on Children”.https://parenting.firstcry.com/articles/impact-of-social-media-on-children/

One thought on “Social Media and Children’s Behavior

  1. The struggle is real! Giving kids screen time is like opening Pandora’s Box for them. The online world is so compelling, but monitoring the time and the content requires so much work from a parent too.

    My children are grumpy and irritable when they are allowed too much screen time, but they crave it as well.

    As parents, we must also take responsibility for modelling good habits and not be overly engaged in our online worlds too. Our children need this from us and they need the gift of our physical and metal presence as well.

    Thank you for addressing a timely and relevant topic.

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