love to save videos for Adi on Instagram related to cars, off-roading, and other topics. We often watch them together and discuss our thoughts about the content. Recently we are following a cyclist's journey from India, to Thailand, to Malaysia, and then to Singapore. We both can't wait to see his progress and what amazing places he'll get to explore.

Adi was learning so much about his travels, the visa, the currency, and the cultures he was coming across.

Then there is this other guy who wakes up early and talks about the benefits of waking up early.

We also follow a few adventure bloggers who have amazing stories about their travels around the world.

While Instagram is always looked at as a source of entertainment, I realized we can use it to our advantage. Following the right people and consuming the right content, can help us to grow and learn.

Adi is now starting to understand that with the right use of technology, there's so much we can do. We are both excited to see what other great opportunities this platform has to offer.

Another research by Oberlo shows that 13.1 percent of teens use social media.

Chart of social media age demographics

What fear do parents have about their kids using social media?

While parents think that kids use social media only for entertainment they are also used for connecting with their friends and learning new skills. But parents are concerned about the safety of their kids while using Instagram.

This graph shows the distribution of Instagram users worldwide as of April 2022, by age group

  • Many parents fear that their children could be exposed to inappropriate or dangerous content when using Instagram.
  • They also worry that kids may be spending too much time on their phones and neglecting to take part in physical activities, play with friends, or focus on their studies.
  • Parents are concerned about cyberbullying, as well as the fact that strangers may be able to access their child's profile and contact them.
  • The effect of influencers and celebrities on young children is also a concern, as kids might be swayed by their flashy lifestyles and take up risky behaviors. Recently, a study of adolescent users in the UK and the US revealed that 40% of teens admitted to feeling "unattractive" after using Instagram. As published in Wall street journal 32 % of teenage girls felt bad about their bodies, and Instagram made it worse.

Instagram is addictive, and these issues can have a long-term impact on the emotional and mental health of kids. "It's as if they're taking behavioral cocaine and just sprinkling it all over your interface and that's the thing that keeps you like coming back and back and back",- former Mozilla and Jawbone employee Aza Raskin.

What Skills parents can help kids build using Instagram?

  • Parents can help their kids develop social media literacy and media literacy by teaching them to think critically about the content they're consuming. They should also be aware of what their child is posting and who they are interacting with on the platform.
  • Parents may want to set guidelines for using Instagram, such as not sharing personal information or using inappropriate language. Additionally, parents can help their children build communication skills by discussing the content they see online and helping them to express themselves through captions or stories.
  • Parents can encourage their kids to practice good digital citizenship by modeling responsible behavior on social media and respecting other users. This could include refraining from posting negative comments or spreading rumors, and being mindful of other people's feelings. This can also help to cultivate a more positive online environment.
  • Parents need to ensure that their child's Instagram account is private, and properly monitored and that the right settings are enabled to help protect them from any potential harm.
  • Further, parents should set limits on how much time their children can spend on Instagram and discuss the importance of staying safe online. This can be discussed mutually. Now you have features on Instagram that shows your usage of data and you can discuss it with your children.
  • Children need the skills to consume with self-control and discernment, parents must help them to grow in this responsibility. They should be taught the science of dopamine play in brains and the addiction that it has the potential to create. Tell them the difference between consuming content for entertainment and consuming it to grow.

Kids can be encouraged to use the platform to create and share content that has a positive impact on their peers by creating meaningful posts and stories. They can follow accounts that are inspiring, educational and informative to help expand their knowledge base. Times are changing, children are getting inspired by digital creators and Instagram is a great platform for them to develop their creativity.

With an understanding of how social media works, kids can positively maximize their experience with Instagram.

With these measures in place, kids can use Instagram safely and responsibly.

According to Mayo Clinic, Teens use social media for entertainment and self-expression. And the platforms can expose teens to current events, allow them to interact across geographic barriers and teach them about a variety of subjects, including healthy behaviors

Potential Benefits of Social media for Kids

  • Social media can help children when used in a positive and responsible way. Kids can learn valuable skills such as communication, collaboration, problem-solving and creativity while using Instagram.
  • It is also an opportunity to explore different cultures, practices and lifestyles which can expand their knowledge base.
  • Moreover, staying connected with friends and family members is a great way to combat loneliness and isolation.
  • Finally, kids can have fun with Instagram by creating content, telling stories and discovering new videos which may inspire them in new ways.
  • Instagram gives children the opportunity to communicate their thoughts and ideas with a wider audience, helping them to develop their self-expression skills. Furthermore, they can learn the importance of empathy and understanding by seeing their peers’ posts and respecting their people's feelings.
  • All these advantages suggest that with proper guidance, kids can use Instagram to enrich their lives in ways never thought possible before.  Its potential benefits are too valuable to miss out on!  

Commonly used social media sites among kids

Social media sites are common among kids according to Raising Kids a parenting website-








YouTube Kids.

Here's how we use Instagram.

  • I save some interesting channels or videos for Adi, we schedule a time in a day in to watch them and discuss them.
  • Sometimes we do scroll together, but we fix our time limit.
  • I try to help Adi identify internet trends and how things work on Instagram, what he should be doing or not doing.
  • Finally, we talk about online safety, and good digital citizenship, and I make sure that his account is private and secure with all the right settings in place to protect him from any potential harm.
  • Overall, with the right guidance and support, Instagram can be a great way to engage with digital media in an educational and fun way.
  • Adi is now confident about using Instagram responsibly and enjoys discovering new content on this platform. It's amazing to see how far he has come! With the right use of technology, there are so many opportunities.

How can parents see Social Media in a positive light?

Parents can see social media in a positive light if they take the time to understand how their kids are using it.

They should also ensure that their children are only engaged with appropriate content and make sure that they have safety measures in place to protect them from encountering inappropriate or dangerous material.

Monitoring one's child’s activities, having open conversations with them, and setting limits to the time they spend on social media can also help. Parents should encourage their children to interact with content that brings them joy and is educational in nature.

They can motivate their kids to create original content or engage with influencers who promote healthy lifestyles and positive values.

Parents can also use platforms like Instagram to stay connected with their children, find mutual interests, and support their development.

How can kids use Use Social Media for good deeds?

Spread Awareness / Fundraiser:

Kids can use social media to spread awareness about issues they are passionate about. Kids can also use platforms like Instagram to showcase their talents, raise funds for charitable causes, or even start campaigns to bring attention to important issues.

Gathering Information:

They can connect with other like-minded people who share the same interests and work together towards a common goal. Kids can also use platforms like Instagram to showcase their talents, raise funds for charitable causes, or even start campaigns to bring attention to important issues.

Creating Communities:

By creating online communities where people can share their stories and experiences, kids can help to create a positive impact on society.

They can also use social media for good by engaging with content that is inspiring or educational and actively participating in discussions about topics of interest.

Furthermore, kids can spread kindness online and promote positivity on the internet.

Parents need to be conscious of the risks and benefits associated with social media and help their kids use Instagram in a safe and responsible way.

This can include discussing

online etiquette- what to post and not to post, setting time limits for usage, monitoring their kids’ accounts regularly and teaching them about online safety.

setting limits on usage times- too long usage can lead to fatigue or restlessness,

monitoring their accounts- checking the type of content they are exposed to,

teaching them about online safety- teaching them what information is safe to share and how to protect their personal data.

Jan 14, 2023
Digital Learning

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