Texting, chatting and online messaging can be used for much more than simply communicating with your friends. Online communication can help young people build and develop social skills and gives them a platform to share their skills and help each other out.
Messaging and texting are among the most popular methods of communication among children and teenagers. A study by Common Sense Media in 2018 found that 70% of teenagers report using social media multiple times a day.
Messaging and texting can be much more than ways to communicate. They can also be tools that help young people learn and master important skills.
How online messaging can improve social skills
Online messaging apps are often used by young people to talk to their friend and peers. Staying connected with your friends is valuable, but online messaging also gives young people opportunities to develop their social skills in a range of formal and informal contexts.
Online messaging can help young people to:
- appreciate different perspectives
- understand the difference between appropriate and inappropriate behaviour
- become more effective non-verbal communicators.
How online messaging gives kids an opportunity to help each other
When young people can contact friends their own age, it makes it easier for them to ask for help. They can discuss a range of topics, and even help each other understand things that might confuse them.
Chatting with peers online can help young people to:
- discuss homework or ideas from school they didn’t understand
- talk to a friend about something that’s happened at school
- develop and refine new or creative ideas.
Curriculum and syllabus links
NSW Syllabus outcomes
Australian Curriculum content descriptions
- 'Social Media, Social Life: Teens Reveal Their Experiences (2018)', Common Sense Media, accessed 13 March 2019