How to constructively respond to concerns about social media?
An introduction to simple techniques for media educators to respond constructively to concerns that related to media addiction, moral panic, but also over estimation of the role of the media for learning.
Implement simple techniques from the “Greater Good” for successful negotiation with young people about appropriate media use.
1. Discuss the Five Tips for Helping Teens Manage Technology.
2. Implement a recommendation from Tip 1 and make a list of the characteristics that describe a healthy relationship.
3. Implement Tip 3 and rehearse taking a pause before responding to on line provocation.
4. Implement tip 3 (cont.) discuss how to use a sim ple “check in” activity to increase awareness of the impact that social media can have upon a teenager’s feelings.
5. Implement tip 4 and plan off line activity with teenagers.
6. Implement Tip 5 and develop criteria that can be used to spot trouble
Youth worker activity (step by step)
1. Project the “Greater good” web site and discuss the five tips for parents and youth workers.
2. Facilitate a discussion to identify a list of characteristics associated with healthy and unhealthy relationships. Ask learners to discus s how people behave on social media, get learners to give examples of unhealthy behaviour that they may have witnessed on line.
3. Facilitate a discussion about the instant reacti ons that might come in response to social media provocation. Ask pupils to make a list of the reasons why it might be important to pause and reflect before responding to social media provocation. Ask pupils to create a plan for the things they might do in order to pause and reflect before responding to social media provocation.
4. Introduce a simple scoring system where learners give a number 1 to 10 to reflect how anxious they feel in this lesson. Ask learners to discuss how this scoring could be used to check how they feel after being engaged with social media. Ask learners to make a plan for checking the ir anxiety levels on 3 occasions before your next session.
5. Facilitate a discussion about how it is important it is to have off line social activities. Ask learners to identify opportunities for off line social activity in the coming week. Ask learners to plan some off line social activity before the next session.
6. Ask learners to make a list of things to look out for that might suggest someone is being bullied using social media. Discuss way to engage with that person and make a list of people who might need your help.
Learner activity (step by step)
1. Discuss how these tips can help people who are concerned about young people’s media/social media habits.
2. Identify characteristics of healthy patterns of behaviour as well as unhealthy patterns of behaviour. Discuss examples of unhealth y behaviour that learners may have witnessed on line.
3. Discuss how it is easy to respond to social media provocation aggressively and then get caught up in ‘flame war’. Identify reasons why it’s good to pause and reflect.
4. Score their current anxiety levels and explain why they are allocating their score. Discuss how this simple scoring system can be used as a self-awareness tool when engaged in social media. Agree to conduct ‘check in’ with themselves 3 times before the next session. Create a plan for a successful, reflective pause.
5. Identify the reasons why offline social activity is important. Identify opportunities for offline social activity in the coming week. Plan to engage in offline social activity in the coming week.
6. Identify signs that someone is being bullied using social media. Discuss how you might start a conversation with someone that you think might be the victim of bullying via social media. Identify people who might help
1. Access to the ‘greater good’ website
2. Access to the online safety resources
3. Access to a list of signs to spot cyberbullying
Assessment of learning
- Listen to individual contributions to the discussions.
- Assess the content of the lists produced.
- Assess the quality of their plans produced
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The publication was created as part of the project: EMELS
This publication reflects the views onl y of the author, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the in formation contained therein.