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Waco middle schoolers learn how to navigate opportunities & dangers of social media

Posted at 10:53 PM, Oct 26, 2021
and last updated 2021-11-08 21:52:52-05

WACO, Texas — As lawmakers met with social media executives on Tuesday, G.W. Carver and Indian Spring Middle School students got together for their weekly "TikTok Tuesday".

The school's social media club helps students learn more about the benefits and uses of social media, but also helps them navigate some of the problems it presents.

"We try to teach them what you post on social media, it stays on social media--it can stay on the internet," school social worker Clair Chapman said. "We try to teach them the dangers and how it can positively impact something or negatively."

The students have also learned how to schedule social media posts, create videos for school events and make podcasts.

"Social media is strong," said Shaniya Smith, an 8th-grade student at Indian Spring. "So we're just trying to bring positive energy to the school, social media, people, reality."

On Capitol Hill, Senators questioned executives from Snapchat, TikTok, and YouTube on Tuesday about some of the potential harm inflicted on children by social media platforms. Questions about privacy, manipulative marketing, and social media addiction arose.

Dr. Taha Ansari, a child and adolescent psychiatrist with Baylor Scott & White told 25 News that social media addiction is a real concern.

"That can lead to social isolation, avoidance, and if you take that addiction away, you're gonna be irritable, you're gonna be angry, you're gonna be throwing tantrums," Ansari said.

He suggests parents set limits and block inappropriate content for their children.

"It's good if you allow it in certain amounts, and healthy content is what's important too," he said.