***Post Written by Michael Crane, Treasurer for WSPA***
For years, those of us working directly with kids have noticed profound changes in the cases brought before us. Our kids seem to lack basic social skills and empathy and appear more anxious and neurotic. Language skills and coping skills appear stunted. In short, our kids are not doing well. Many have wondered for years what impact social media, graphic video games, and ubiquitous and unfiltered access to the internet have bestow on our children. Jean Twenge’s book, iGen reveals a possible culprit.
The Internet Generation or as Jean Twenge calls them, “iGen” is here, those born between 1995-2012. These are people who grew up never not knowing what 24-7 access to the internet was like. Kids who grew up with cell phones, Ipads, and Ipods in their strollers.
Twenge combed through mountains of data and conducted countless interviews to come to her conclusions: As her subtitle reads, “Why today’s super-connected kids are growing up less rebellious, more tolerant, less happy and completely unprepared for Adulthood.”
It’s not all bad news, however. Jean reveals how our kids are more safety conscious and take less risk. This mindset had led to higher rates of seatbelt use, less drunk driving, and fewer unplanned pregnancies to name a few.
This book should be required reading for every parent, school employee, or anyone who works with young people. It’s an expose of how are youngsters are spending their time and how they are really feeling despite what all of those Instagram and Facebook posts suggest.