Kids signing up to social media can be a concerning time for parents. There’s a lot of information about the dangers and risks to children that social media can cause such as privacy breaches and cyber bullying. It can be an easy option for parents to simply ban it altogether. However, if kids use social media safely, there are a range of benefits that they can enjoy. Below is some of that kids can use social media for their benefit without being a risk to their safety or welfare.
Follow their passions
Social media can give children the opportunity to explore their interests and passions. Kids can follow pages and join groups with people that have similar interests. For example if your child is developing an interest in a sports team, they can follow that team on social media to get regular updates and interviews with the players.
Social media allows children to keep in touch with each other at the touch of a button. Children who struggle to communicate in person can find social media a good way to form and grow friendships that they might struggle with in person. This particularly affects disabled children who might not be able to attend social events. Social media is also a great way to keep in touch with friends or relatives who live very far apart. If close family members move far away and face to face interaction will be limited, social media can help to maintain these relationships.
Build a digital footprint
Children you have a particular talent can use social media to grow the digital footprint. As they learn to showcase their ability they can grow an online portfolio which can give them success in later life. Social media accounts are increasingly being asked for in job applications, so an account which highlights their talent can be a valuable asset.
Have a support network
It’s easier to support friends and family in times of need by social media. If children are spending time alone or don’t want to talk to people face to face about a particular issue, social media can allow them to communicate and reassure each other. The ease in which children can message their friends and family can give them a fantastic support network and help to secure their emotional well being.
Improve digital skills
There are many more jobs in the workplace that require digital ability. Most companies now try to maintain some form of online presence through digital marketing. This has opened up more and more jobs in this field and has become a valuable skill to learn. In addition to this, an increasing number of jobs require a knowledge of this.
Broaden their horizons
Children can also easily discover new interesting topics and broaden their horizons. If your child follows an art page on Instagram, they could discover new artists and works of art on a daily basis and develop their knowledge over time. They could also choose to explore a hashtag and find a whole range of new artwork that they weren’t aware of. They can also learn new perspectives to help understand the world around them.
Make a change in the world
One of the great things about social media is that it can allow some children to campaign for social good. They can grow an awareness about issues and grow a sense of community and help on social issues. If there’s a particular cause they’re interested in they can set up fundraisers and easily share it with their friends to help create a positive real world change.
It’s important to remember that many social media platforms aren’t available for under 13’s, so check their Terms & Conditions. If your kid is 12 years old then take a look at some other ideas to help them develop.