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Teenagers nowadays live a world apart from previous generations of teenagers. Social media is all around us, and their is no escaping it. Kids are learning to use smart phones, tablets and computers way before hitting adolescence. So when they do become an adolescent they are pros when it comes to electronics, and we are immersed in a world full of social media. This can be dangerous because face book for example is a normal part of teenage life and most don't realize that sharing private information on the web means that potentially everyone can see it. Their lives' these days are much less private than they used to be.
I also believe that today's teens partly because of the exposure to social media and the web on a frequent basis desensitise them at a very young age. So they may be willing to try drugs, have sex do things that most teenagers experiment with at a much younger age than previous generations.
Also today's teens are much more overweight than in previous years and that is because they have become significantly less active. Instead of an afternoon maybe riding a bike it would be spent instead on the computer or in front of the TV.
Teens are exposed to more of the bad things in this world from a young age. It desensitized them to early in life and I think this causes them to experiment with drugs, alcohol and sex at too young of an age.
My view of teenagers today is that they are essentially not any different than teenagers were thirty years ago. Some of the details of teen life have changed, but the basics remain the same.
It is true that teens today are exposed to more things than teens were thirty years ago. The level of exposure to sexuality is much higher today given the rise of the Internet and of cable channels like HBO that show nudity on a much more regular basis than occurred in the early 1980s. Teens today have all sorts of electronic devices that allow them to be entertained and connected wherever they are.
But underneath all of these details, I would argue that teens are not much different than they were when I was a teen. Teens still feel that they are at an in between stage in life. They still feel that they should be given more freedom and respect by adults. Teens are still trying to figure out who they are going to be. They still “try on” various personas at various times. They still worry about whether they will be accepted by peers. These are things that seem to be relatively timeless. This is why my view is that teens today are essentially similar to teens thirty years ago.
I feel as if teenagers spend way too much time on their cell phones. My students in high school and middle school and constantly looking down at their phones even though they know they are not allowed to. They cannot wait to download the latest update on their apps so they can upload pictures or videos or whatever it is that they always update and talk about. I feel as if they are constantly wondering what their peers are thinking about them and saying about them behind cell phones. I have witnessed countless amount of arguments and petty fights over something as simple as an instagram picture from one of their "so called" internet friends.
Electronics are alot of fun for everybody I just really hope that future generations can stop being so distraced so easily by them and simply pay attention in class a little more.
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