Addressing the Risks of Adolescent Social Media Use
Help students strategically navigate the digital world with Wayfinder resources and strategies
A Growing Concern About the Impact of Social Media on Youth Development
US Surgeon General Dr. Vivek Murthy released a 19-page report explicitly calling out the harmful outcomes of prolonged exposure to social media. With concerns now confirmed, many are wondering how we can best support students to avoid the negative impacts of social media use while still acknowledging its potential benefits.
95% of youth ages 13–17 report using at least one social media platform for an average of 3.5 hours a day
The Unsuspecting Danger of Social Media
A growing body of research links the use of social media to detrimental changes to cognitive development and mental health, especially during highly sensitive ages of 10-19.
- Persistent use of social media could lead to distinct changes in the developing brain in the amygdala and prefrontal cortex
- Every hour spent on social media correlated with a 13% increase in the risk of depression
- Adolescents who spent more than 3 hours per day on social media faced double the risk of experiencing poor mental health outcomes than their peers
- Limiting or eliminating social media decreases depressive symptoms and increases perceived well-being
Free Resources for Curbing the Risk of Social Media
We've pulled together high-impact resources from our new social media content into a free downloadable packet to help educators and leaders take action now. The packet includes:
- Engaging, relevant lessons that provide a meaningful entry point into helping students make better choices online.
- Quick activities that can spark meaningful conversations and shifts in students' digital usage.
- Accompanying slide decks and workbook pages that make it easy to integrate into what you're already doing.
- Content for elementary, middle, and high School students.
Download now to help your students avoid the negative fallout of social media use and take control of their digital lives!
Wayfinder provides educators with the tools to reinvigorate connection within the classroom. Designed at the Stanford d.school, our program leverages the power of purpose, belonging, and SEL to help students and staff reconnect with themselves, their peers, and the broader community. We offer a range of tools that fits the needs of your school or district:
Core Curriculum: Research-backed lessons for K-12
Activity Library: 1000+ relevant and engaging activities
NEW! Collections: curated to address timely needs such as bullying, cyber safety, and financial literacy
Assessment Suite: track growth on skill development and wellness
Adult SEL: nurture the needs of your staff