Archive | Technology

Teaching Cell Phone Etiquette in School

Two weeks ago in New York City, Mayor Bill de Blasio overturned a 9-year-old ban on cell phones in schools. For the most part, everyone was happy with the decision—especially students and parents—but there were some teachers who voiced concerns over how it might impact student learning.

Frankly, the headlines caught me by surprise. Not because the ban was being lifted, but because it had survived this long at all. How could an institution designed to train kids for the future prevent them from working with one of the tools they will most definitely, without a doubt, need?

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The Elephant in the Room

Two years ago, I was in Charlotte, North Carolina for the national convention of Health and PE teachers. I attended workshops on alcohol and drug prevention, nutrition, physical fitness, mental health, sex ed, you name it. Basically, it was a health teacher’s dream… especially for a curriculum dork like me.

The last session I attended was presented by a peer-based sex ed group, and while I was impressed with what they were doing, I still felt like there was something missing. So when they asked if anybody had any questions, I couldn’t help but pose one to the room.

When are we going to talk about porn?

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More Screen Time Leads to Less Sleep

We frequently post about the importance of sleep, but there’s a good reason why: It’s an essential part of a teen’s health and well-being. Lack of sleep not only increases the risk of obesity, but it also leads to poorer performance in school. According to a new study, “small screens”—or devices like iPods, smartphones, and tablets—are negatively impacting teens’ sleep schedules. If kids sleep with a smartphone in their room or bed, they received 21 minutes less sleep than those who didn’t.

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The Power of Social Media to Teach Kids Advocacy

The Internet is an amazing thing. When we look at the impact it has on the social and emotional health of our kids, it’s easy to go negative—especially with some of the headlines out there—but if we take time to focus on the good, then they’re more likely to come to us when they need help with the bad.

One of the ways we can do that is by sharing stories with them about kids who are using the Internet to bring about big social change.

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Use Your #TBT to Remember a Loved One Today

Typically on Thursdays, a scroll through Instagram features baby pictures galore. That’s because #TBT (or Throwback Thursday) has become a constant trend in social media. Tying into this theme, Too Damn Young has decided to declare today, Dec. 4, as Remembrance Day. It’s a day for teens and young adults who have lost loved ones to remember those individuals in the best light—with a photo accompanied by a sweet or funny memory in the caption.

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WATCH: This Video Will Make You Rethink Concepts Like Body Image & Self Worth

“If you could change one thing about your body, what would it be?” In a new video, an organization called JubileeProject asked this question to 50 people of all ages. The contrast between answers from children and adults is eye-opening. UntitledAs they grow up, there are more and more complaints or desires to change actual body parts—huge foreheads or round faces. Meanwhile, the younger kids answer with magical things like having wings or a mermaid tail.

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Happy Halloween From the Spooky Staff of Choices

In our November/December issue of Choices Magazine, we debate the pros and cons of Photoshop. Two teens weigh in on whether editing photos hurts teens’ self esteem. While we agree that photoshopping can have its downsides, it can also be used for lighthearted fun. To get in the spirit of Halloween, we’ve decided to use Google’s Halloweenify tool to transform our staff’s portraits. For your own spooky and scary photos, head to Google before this ghoulish app is gone!

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Starting A Classroom Meditation Practice

“OK, I get it. The kids need to meditate… but how does that work, exactly?”

We live in some hyper-connected times; stress levels are on the way up as attention spans are on the way down. Equipping students with the skills needed to slow down and be mindful can help them as they struggle to find focus and calm in a world full of constant distractions.

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Learn How to be More Than Just a Bystander With This Bullying Prevention Game!

As we’ve mentioned in past posts, October is National Bullying Prevention Month. There are plenty of ways to get involved and take a stand against bullying (including this month’s #ChoicesChallenge). Another strategy? Participate in DoSomething.org’s The Bully Text campaign! It’s an interactive, choose-your-own-adventure game that teens can play on their phones and learn how to be more than just bystanders.

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DoSomething.org’s New Campaign Spotlights Girls & STEM

Studies show that as they get older, girls are losing interest in science and math. According to statistics, 66% of girls are interested in these subjects in fourth grade, but by eighth grade, they are only half as interested as boys. That’s why our friends at DoSomething.org are teaming up with 3M to shine a spotlight on girls and STEM (science, technology, engineering, & math).

Starting today, they are launching their Science Sleuth campaign, which not only helps young people learn about careers in the STEM field, but also supports STEM programs in your area.

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