Middle Schoolers Sound Off on Social Media


The middle school years are notoriously difficult to navigate. For young teens, physical, emotional, and mental development often clash with new responsibilities and expectations. Likewise, navigating social media in today’s digital world inevitably exposes novice users to complicated situations for which there is no textbook or manual. Middle schoolers are often just beginning to use forms of social media such as Instagram, Snapchat, and Facebook (the latter far less popular among young users), even as they find themselves at the crossroads of childhood and teenhood, and experimenting with different forms of who they want to become. It’s a heavy load that brings with it the opportunity for both social enrichment and social detriment, as I learned recently while talking with students at Gaiser Middle School in Vancouver.

I was there to work with students through a program called GEAR UP (Gaining Early Awareness and Readiness for Undergraduate Programs), which provides mentoring and resources to boost academic performance and prepare students for college and careers. My goal was to work with the students to compose an article as a team. Step one was to select a topic, and that’s where the students first surprised me.

To read more, pick up a copy of the July 2018 issue at any of these locations, or view the digital archive copy here.

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About Author

Nikki Klock became co-owner and editor of Vancouver Family Magazine in September 2006. She grew up mainly in the Northwest and graduated from Utah Valley University. She is an avid reader and insists that a book is (almost) always better than a movie. She has lived in Vancouver with her husband, JR, and two daughters since 2003. Check out Nikki's Editor’s Picks here.

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