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SCOTTSBLUFF, Neb. – (KNEP) – A former Math teacher now with ESU 13 is set to present a guide to helping kids find balance between life and social media.

An East Minico Middle school student received a personal threat Thursday evening through social media. School authorities were made aware in the morning. (Pixabay)

Technology Integration Specialist Craig Hicks states they see obstacles when a student doesn’t have boundaries in place for time spent on the phone.

Those boundaries include but are not limited to bullying and depression. Hicks added some kids are internalizing things they see on social media and thus can fall into depression. Teachers can be there for those students and if the student feels comfortable talking to them they can lend an ear to listen. Ultimately, they should let a school psychiatrist know what is going on to provide the best care for the student.

Hicks mentioned the most aggressive time is between fifth and eighth grade. This is a time in which students are challenging each other. A lot of drama occurs during those years. When Hicks taught school he stated he saw a bit of bullying but at the time it was face-to-face. Now with the invention of social media and phones the bullying may not end when the bell rings.

The presentation he will give will show bullying could boil over into the evenings and overnight. This can pose a problem for those who are glued to their devices. Hicks knows phones won’t be going away anytime soon and that parents will have a hard time trying to take the phone away from their child. He believes that by helping kids understand the balance between the phone and face-to-face interactions will help.

By continuing those attacks after school on social media and text messages it can manifest itself into a problem where it impacts a child’s life inside school. Moreover, Hicks stated that even if a child is using the phone as an alarm clock it can affect their sleeping habits with all the notifications going off.

Hicks believes social media is a good thing and can help people, especially those in Western Nebraska, connect with other individuals who have similar interests. But, he also believes there are dangers to it and will show a video during the presentation that discusses the effects it will have on the brain.

In all, Hicks mentioned finding a balance is key for students. The presentation will be Wednesday in Chadron as part of Tech Days.

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