Social media is an integral part of today’s children’s lives. But with the many pros and cons of using social media, it is important to be aware of the impact it can have on a child’s social development.
Pros of Children’s Use of Social Media
Pro: Social media provides a way for children to stay connected with friends and family who live far away. For example, if a child’s best friend lives in another state. They can stay in touch via text messages or Facebook.
Pro: Children can stay connected with family members who are deployed in the military. In fact, many military families use social media to keep in touch with loved ones while they are overseas.
Pro: Social media allows children to stay connected with classmates from past schools or summer camps. Children who have moved from one school district to another can still connect with their old friends through social media.
Cons of Children’s Use of Social Media
Con: Kids should be cautious about sharing too much personal information on social media sites. Posting your child’s age, school name, neighborhood, and other details could put them at risk for cyberbullying or identity theft later on.
Instead of posting this information online, kids should keep their address and phone number private by not including it on their profiles.
Also, make sure your child uses privacy settings. That prevents others from viewing photos that include personal information such as addresses or license plate numbers. If you are worried about someone finding out where you live. Tell your child not to include any identifying information on Facebook and other social networking sites.
Con: Kids should also be careful about posting photos that could reveal their location. For example, a photo of your child in front of a store or school might be enough for someone to figure out where they live. This is especially true if your child has a large number of friends and follows other users who might also live in the same area.
Con: Even though many parents allow their children to use social media sites, most don’t know the password to their accounts.
As a result, kids may not take cyberbullying or online predators seriously. Because they think that if something happens, they can just tell their parents and have them fix it. It’s important for kids to understand that notifying their parents after something bad has happened isn’t the best way to handle things.
Instead, kids should make sure they follow all the security settings on social media sites. And talk with friends about staying safe online before an incident occurs.
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