It’s a familiar seasonal challenge: helping tweens and teens find avenues for serving others.
Kids want to make this world a better place, but aren’t sure how to go about it. After all, they don’t have the money to drop a bill in a donation jar or donate online like we can.
Yet motivated by the need to fulfill service hours required by schools, this summer, more younger kids are actively seeking causes that match their interests. Plus, they’ve discovered the power of hashtags. Actually, this might be one of the strongest ways to have an impact as they grow up.
That’s not surprising: they did grow up as digi-kids.
Middle school, junior high and high school students don’t need to wait to take classes in adulting, like so many of today’s millennials are doing now.
Educators noticed that kids are growing up without basic life skills. As a result, learning to make a monthly budget, pay bills and buy insurance is now being built into both required and elective courses.
“No cell from bell to bell” has become far more prevalent at high schools this year.
Students are typically told to put cells on silent and store in backpacks during the day, although some schools are allowing phone use during lunch. Parent messages come through the school office.
At least one reputable study concluded that banning phone usage in schools leads to higher test scores for multiple reasons, including the fact that students are less distracted. I’m wondering if we’ll see a decrease in cyber bullying, too.
In some areas, nearly half of high schools have deleted the tradition of naming salutatorians and valedictorians.
Honestly, I was (and still am) proud of one of our daughters who ranked #1 out of more than 500 graduates. She worked unbelievably hard for that honor. I’m grateful her achievement was recognized.
Today, the anti-valedictorian movement has strong advocates. As a result, some schools award multiple students with top grade point averages. Other schools have an entire “row of honor.”
In today’s sport, appearance and popularity-driven schools, any recognition of excellent scholastic is worthy of the attention.
If you’ve grocery shopped recently with a tween or teen, you know these kids shop differently than we shopped at their age.
Knowledge is at their fingertips, so it you want to know the effect of adding Chicoree Angel Hair to your salad, just ask your young companion- he’ll have an answer in two clicks, as his phone is probably already on.
Of course, consider it a minor miracle if a tween or teen will even accompany you to a grocery store. They are major influencers of the shopping list, but typically avoid such boring shopping.
The teen trend of hunting for binge-worthy TV is aging down to tweens.
Entertainment execs have used serialized storytelling to fuel the summertime activity. Longer stories result in deeper engagement by viewers.
And of course, digital tech means those screens go everywhere.
Social media has been blamed for triggering teen disturbances at malls.
As a result, an increasing number of shopping centers are banning unaccompanied minors on weekend nights. Although some mall officials add curfews only on holiday weekends, restrictions are becoming more widespread.