At ym360, we're committed to equipping youth workers. While most of our energy is dedicated to doing this in the areas of Bible Study Resources and Training, we believe it's valuable for youth workers and parents to stay in the loop on what is happening in youth culture and culture in general. (Read why we think it's important here.)
A couple times a month, we'll do a post like this one, where we link to relevant articles and studies that give you a better glimpse into the world teenagers are living in.
[Note: By nature, some of the articles and subject matter we deal with in Trends & Culture often conflicts with our beliefs and ethics as Christ-followers. Our purpose in linking to this type of material is to simply give you the option of knowing the culture your students are surrounded by. Use discretion to determine which links to click on.] We'd love to know that we're not just equipping you, but those you serve, as well.
Consider using this article to equip your community in the following ways:
- Email this link to your adult volunteers
- Repost it on your blog or church website
- Email the link to all your parents to help equip them to better understand their teen's world
- SHARE IT with your youth ministry networks. This is a great way to help your peeps!
Without further ado, here are some relevant links we think you should know about.
- “Teens Text More Than Adults, But They’re Still Just Teens”—Long article but worth the read. Provides a ton of awesome insight into how teenagers communicate via texting, Facebook, etc. A few observations I thought were noteworthy: --Today’s teens see password-sharing as a sign of trust and as signaling that they have nothing to hide. --80% of American teenagers are on Facebook --Facebook less like a collection of friends and more like a town hall meeting --63% of teenagers text people in their lives every day; 39% of make voice calls; 35% engage in face-to-face communication outside of school.
- “Facebook, Twitter, other social media are brain candy, study says”—A look at why we're so inclined to “overshare” on social media sites. Good insight into teenage behavior.
- “How People Spend Their Time Online [Infographic]”—Fun little info graphic on what we do when we're online. Does this match up at all to what you know about your students' online behavior?
- “FB Launches Facebook Camera”—Look out for Facebook Camera, an Instagram meets Facebook mashup that is sure to be a hit with teens and young adults.
- “Marvel Comics and Same Sex Marriage”—Walt Mueller comments about Marvel Comics recent revelation that one of its superhero characters, who is a homosexual, will marry his partner in the June 27 edition.
- “Honor Student At Texas High School Jailed For Missing School”—Pretty remarkable story. And kind of sad. Looks like it could have a happy(er) ending.
- “'The Demise of Guys': How video games and porn are ruining a generation”—I think this is a “must read” article. I would send it to parents and any volunteers you have. I think the observations in this article are confirmed in what I have seen over the last few years doing youth ministry. I'm curious whether or not you would agree.
- “Can You See Me Now? The relationship between teens and online video”—We included this post in one of our Flashback Fridays, but I think it's worth re-sharing. Look at the stats on how students are engaging online video. Ask yourself: are there relational implications? Ministry implications?
- “Hannah Montana has left the building: Miley Cyrus says sex is 'cool' and 'magical'”—I remember when Cyrus' image first started changing and how disappointing it was. This latest soundbite is still disappointing, but not surprising. Pay close attention to how she defines a girl's value. That may be the most disappointing part of all.
- At the Box Office—Here's how the weekend went at the movies. Men in Black 3 knocked the Avengers from the top spot, grossing $70,000,000 to The Avengers' $46,878,000. Coming in 3rd was Battleship with $13,769,000.
- The Billboard Hot 100—The top 5 songs this week according to the Billboard Hot 100: Number 1: “Somebody That I Used To Know,” by Gotye Featuring Kimbra. Number 2: “Call Me Maybe,” by Carly Rae Jepsen. Number 3: “Payphone,” by Maroon 5. Number 4: “We Are Young” fun. featuring Janelle Monae. Number 5: “Starships,” by Nicki Minaj
- “Are You A Narcissist? Use Twitter and Facebook To Find Out”—Interesting study. Turns out all those tweets and Facebook posts by millennials might not be so narcissistic after all. From the article: “It appears that the posting of photos of oneself and updating of one’s status on Facebook is more a reflection of young adults’ orientation to openness with regard to their daily lives.”
- Diabetes Dramatically on the Rise Among Teenagers—Nearly a quarter of American children and adolescents is developing type 2 diabetes or has already the disease, according to a study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
- “Most popular teen book characters use most profanity”—Study shows that most of the profanity in adolescent novels comes from the most-popular, wealthy and attractive characters.
- “Teenage pregnancy: High US rates due to poverty, not promiscuity”—This study finds that there is a link to poverty and teenage motherhood, with the most truly at-risk teens being those who live in areas of great income disparity.
- “Teenagers and Distracted Driving”—Study shows teenagers have an unrealistic view of distracted driving.
That's it for this edition of the ym360 Trends & Culture report. Look for another one the week of June 11.
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