Do seventh-graders and their parents agree on social media?

RITA H., Watertown Splash staff

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    How many students agree with their parents when it comes to social media? It seems like none, right? Truth be told, a very small minority (if any) of students agree with their parents when it comes to posting and chatting online.

    Being able to see what your real friends are doing, as well as virtual friends, not to mention famous people — what could be better?

    For many, the mere thought of their kids on social media makes parents shudder. Parents are scared of what their kids do and see on social media. Will they be cyberbullied? Will they cyberbully others? Will they make bad choices when choosing what to post? These are just a few of things that run through parents’ minds when their kids use social media.

    This leads us to our ultimate question: Do kids and parents agree on social media?

    A lot of kids think that social media is great.

   “I think it’s great because you can interact with your friends, and look back at your life when you get older,” said a seventh-grader at Watertown Middle School who wished to remain anonymous said. 

My mom loves her own social media. But she thinks I spend too much time on it.”


   Another WMS seventh-grader says that they like social media because you get to see what your friends are doing, as well as what people you don’t know are doing.

   A third said that they like it because “you can interact with friends and people you want to know, even if you’re not with them in person.”

    Although these are all good arguments, another WMS seventh-grader thinks that there are two sides to social media.

    “Social media is good and bad, the bad because you can spend your whole day on it doing nothing, even if you’re hanging out in person with your friends,” said Kiara C., a seventh-grader who uses various forms of social media.

    Do parents agree or disagree with these statements?

   “My parents say I’m on my phone too much and worry about my eyesight, but other than that they don’t really care,” Sana R., a seventh-grader, said about her parents.  

    “My mom loves her own social media,” another seventh-grader said. “But she thinks I spend too much time on it.”

    Do parents think their kids spend too much time on social media? Do kids think their parents spend too much time on social media? How do kids and their parents cope with their social media differences?

    “My parents tell me not to get obsessed,” said Gracie D., a seventh-grader.

    Gracie’s parents also follow her on all of Gracie’s social media to monitor what she’s doing. Some may say this is a great idea, while others might not. One seventh-grader allows their parents to follow them, but doesn’t follow them back. Another is Facebook friends with their parents, but is not active on Facebook.

    There is also that number of people whose parents don’t have social media and absolutely no way to see what their kids are doing on social media. So, in the end, there’s no telling if kids and parents really, truly do agree on social media, as much as they try. Do you and your parents agree?

–Dec. 1, 2015–

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