For teenagers and young adults, social media has become an important part of their daily lives. Students can easily install any social media app on their smartphone and start interacting with friends instantly. Because many students are still learning from home, social media is a useful tool for sharing their ideas and studying together with classmates. It helps keep them connected with friends when they are socially apart- something which is particularly important in the current climate. But on the flipside, social media is a major source of trouble due to cyberbullying and various questionable activities.
With that in mind, we are going to take a look at some of the ways that teachers and parents can educate students about the potential risks of social media:
It is easy to share virtually anything on social media. Once students post something, it is imperative they understand that it is within public reach forever. Deleting tweets, posts, and images isn’t always a solution, because of the ability others have to capture screenshots and potentially controversial images. Screenshots can potentially eternalise a reckless moment that students will regret later.
Think Before Posting Or Leaving Hateful Comments
The words and images people post can sometimes hurt others. Cyberbullying is a dark reality among teens and students should be reminded that the posts and comments they leave may hurt someone else, even if it’s meant as a joke. Students should practice kindness when interacting on social media and with friends.
Always Be Wary
Social media isn’t always a nice place to be. It gives young individuals access to so many people they usually would not come across. Students should realise that although people may seem friendly, they may have a hidden motive. They should always focus on protecting themselves and avoid being too trustful. Remember, people could use fake profile pictures and might not be honest about who they really are.
Interact With Friends Only
To stay safe on the internet, students should only interact with classmates, relatives, and others they know well in real life. Meeting a complete stranger on social media can be very risky! Alongside warning children of the dangers, parents should check their children’s friend list on social media to check for people with dubious identities.
Handle Cyber-Bullies Appropriately
Not everyone are friends- some classmates can be bullies. The best course of action is to be completely non-responsive and remove perpetrators from the friends list. Any kind of response can be seen as validation for cyber-bullying. A lack of response should make bullies lose their interest. It is a good idea to capture screenshots to gather evidence of cyber bullying and report it to the school or police if it gets worse.
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