The social media usage is viral and the students are not an exception. They tend to use social media despite the warnings by their parents or the elders. It is recommended to understand their objective behind its use, create an awareness of the benefits and risks of social media, and protect them through their social media activities.
Let us see how.
It is understood that the SSC Board Exam creates an anxiety not only in the minds of the students but also the respective parents. And, whenever, we see the children loitering with the mobile phone in hand surfing social channels, the anxiety doubles.
If we think that our children attending the SSC Board Exam are unsuspecting/insensitive towards the social media usage, it may not be so.
According to a new report from Common Sense Media, teens say they’re well aware of the risks. They know that social media distracts them from having real, in-person connections, but they also believe social media strengthen other relationships.
“Teens are fully aware of the power of devices to distract them from key priorities, such as homework, sleep, and time with friends and family,” says Steyer.
Let us understand the benefits and risks of social media usage by the children studying for SSC Board Exam and how we can help them to self-regulate the use of this social media technology.
Social Media Usage at School Level:
In fact, certain offshore schools are adopting social media for pedagogy purposes and have gained positive acceptance. A few of the practical reasons include:
- Get connected with fellow students for projects and assignments
- Work on group assignments comfortably from home
- Students inexpressive in classes may turn expressive and share thoughts on media
- Questions raised on message board are answered by the teacher and read by all students
- Share useful links on animated videos or audios on the concerned subjects
- Stay in touch with the parents regarding their child’s progress
Benefits of Social Media Usage at Students’ Level:
Apart from pedagogy purposes at schools [though not in all schools yet], school children all over the world use social media for varied purposes. A few of the reasonable benefits include:
- Get in touch with their old friends and get connected with the new friends
- Equip themselves with the current affairs across the world
- As a study tool through study groups and group communications
- Join fan pages or groups of their interest in boosting self-esteem
- As a favorite pass-time during leisure hours. Example Games
- Bring out the talents like poems, photography, and, etc.
- Keep up themselves active with the trending technology
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Risks of Social Media Usage at Students’ Level:
A few of the risks include:
- Cyberbullying is an alarming trend these days among the teenagers. It is necessary to keep a check on the attitude of postings made by the children through the parents or the immediate elders at home. They often carry their own attitude on media.
- Social media is so engaging that students spend more than the appreciable hours on it like games. This may lead to neglect in the studies, friends, family time which eventually leads to isolation of the children. Moreover, it may affect their academic studies too.
- As the time spent on social media gets increasing, the children become more active virtually but become sober in face-to-face interaction. They may fail to interact with friends, relatives, and even parents at times which calls for an absolute support.
- Lots of information disclosure may harm them or the family. They may share the home address, their weekend plans, post personal photos or any other private information. This may lead to unwanted cyber threat issues later on.
Henceforth, it is essential for the parents to protect their child and help them to be judicious when using the social media.
The Parents must encourage a responsible and respectful online activity for their children, besides providing the committed freedom on social media platforms.
7 Points to Consider While Creating Social Media Accounts for Students Studying for the SSC Board Exam:
The Objective of Account Creation on a Chosen Channel:
It is recommended that they encourage their children to be active/surf on certain channels like YouTube, FaceBook, or the Quora. The other channel like LinkedIn is meant for professional or business purpose, and, so forth.
In YouTube channel, they are able to search videos related to their academics, view animated concepts on physics, chemistry, Biology; simple tricks to solve mathematical problems, grammar-related classes, and so forth.
In Quora, the students are able to search varied types of answer presentation for a single question. This helps them to understand and memorize the subject in a more efficient manner.
By creating accounts on Facebook, they are able to keep in touch with their distant relatives and friends which inculcates the habit of maintaining relationships.
They may even have video chat and understand the concepts in a different way, in case they have a relative/friend from far-off places but studying in the same class. This helps them to build a healthy competition, gain confidence about the knowledge, and face the world easily in the future.
Posting Types for Platform Engagement:
The children have a natural tendency and enthusiasm to post any family gathering photos without screening.
Even if you delete the posts later, the records are already made available in the feed for retrieval. It is recommended for the parents to give them adequate support whenever they are involved in social postings.
Sometimes, they may comment funny things on their friends/relative posts. Again, it is a call for the parents to help their children to give positive and supportive comments rather than bullying which may eventually lead to unnecessary quarrels.
Hours of Networking on the Platform:
Though the students derive the real advantage of the social channels, too much of anything is too bad. It is necessary to restrict the networking hours to 15-20 minutes per day or an hour during the weekend[s].
They need not be glued their eyes on social channels all the time. It may affect their eyes in the future. They must be asked to take shoulder exercise and eye exercise after using the social channels either on the mobile phone or desktop.
Moreover, whenever they run the study videos, they can connect the channel through TV, so as to view on a bigger screen with less strain to the eyes.
Identifiable Audience and Friends Circle:
It is necessary to have the username and password of the children’s account. The audience and friends circle must be known to the parents too.
Many a time, it happens that they get a friend request from an unknown person[s] while using the facebook. They may accept the friend request out of enthusiasm like making 100 friends, 500 hundred, and, so forth. The intruder may not have shared any of the details on the profile except a name [even that could be fake too].
Henceforth, parents must keep a strict watch on the friends’ list, followers, and, etc.
Privacy Settings and Friend Request Acceptance/Blocking:
Moving further, it is recommended to give a complete guidance on using the privacy settings through the Facebook. It includes who can view the image, turn on/off notifications, timeline hiding, blocking an account, restricting friend request options, and, etc., so that unknown person may not send a friend request, view the profile and its content, birth dates with the year, place of birth, and, other personal details.
If your children are using the mobile phone, denying access to unknown sites for capturing geolocation, contacts, or photo gallery must be taught carefully. They should be strictly warned to deny access and not to use those sites.
They should not submit any personal details for unknown sites so as to get access to the sites. The sites may not be required at all.
The Necessity of Digital Communication [or otherwise what]?
Another important thing is to have a second thought to open social accounts. Is it highly essential to be present on the social channel, is a serious question in reality?
When your child has all the facilities like-
- All the essential academic activities in school
- Able to meet their best friends in school or neighborhood
- Practice or revise at home using the mobile app
- For example Ezeetest App for the upcoming SSC board exam, NTSE exam or aptitude tests after Board exam
- Talk or video chat with their relatives through parents or phones at home
- Visit Sports/Cultural complex for extracurricular activities
- Can play lots of games
It is high time to reconsider once more about the necessity to create an account.
Who else Manage the Account [parents/elder siblings]?
After all the reconsiderations, it is not a sin to create an account in the name of the children provided, someone else at home access and manage the account. They must sit with them whenever they intend to post or send a friend request and guide them in each step with lots of information feeding.
This boosts the morale level of the children, they feel confident and share with you anything in the future so that you will be the first person to serve them for their needs.
If the elders at home or the parents can create an awareness of the benefits and risks of social media usage before creating an account for their children, stand by them as a friend and guide during their early hours of social media usage, it would be the best help they can do to their children.
What do you say?
How are you helping your children with social media engagement?
Let us know in the comments section below!