Revenge (non-consensual) Porn

Revenge porn is a type of cyberbullying that is on the rise. Also known as non-consensual porn, this occurs when photos of an intimate nature are distributed without the subject’s consent. This is another thing to consider when talking to those kiddos about what information is ok to share on social media and texting. Once […]

Shaping the Future Through Awareness

My Introduction Into Social Media as a LPC Do you remember when Atari was the most popular, must have, latest gaming system? Or, when you got your first cell phone and it was used for emergencies only? How about when television ads first started to include that “www dot thing” at the bottom of the […]

Cyberwisdom Alert: 13 Reasons Why

Suicide is the 2nd leading cause of death for youth 10-24 and the numbers are rising. You may have recently heard of the Netflix series “13 Reasons Why”. If you have or haven’t, please read this article linked below. I have worked very hard to work towards suicide prevention in a responsible way following the […]

Let’s Get Medical: Salt & Ice Challenge

A critical adolescent developmental task involves developing a stable sense of self.  During these vulnerable years, tweens and teens are strongly influenced by their peers and the actions of their peers take on a heightened sense of importance. We have known for many years the grave pull of peer pressure and how it influences teen behavior. In […]

Ask Amanda: Self-Esteem

Question: “Dear Amanda, I have a teenage daughter who is on social media. I worry about her self-esteem and her comparing herself to other girls on social media. How do I help her develop strong self-esteem in this social media visually driven world we are immersed in?” Great question! Worrying about our daughter’s self esteem, […]

Ask Amanda: PokémonGo

Dear Amanda, I have two children: a girl in middle school and a boy in high school. They have become obsessed with the PokémonGo app. It has been all over the news about thieves using it to lure kids to areas and robbing them. I feel that I should make them delete the app. What […]

Ask Amanda: Technology Addiction

Question: “I’m working with parents that are struggling with their kids’ behavioral outbursts when they take away their device. It’s almost like they have an addiction to their phone or tablet. I’ve heard of internet addiction, but is there device addiction?” _______________________________________________________________________ This is a very good question and one that comes up often in […]

Facebook “Dislike” Button Update

As we thought, Facebook has made a decision about the “Dislike’ button. Rather than one button, Facebook is planning on launching a group of “Reaction” emojis which will express “love”, “haha”, “wow”, ”yay”, “sad” and “angry”. These emojis will have motion much like a gif. Currently, they will pilot the new buttons in Spain and […]

Facebook’s “Dislike” Button

In the last week, there has been a lot of talk about Mark Zuckerberg creating a new button to allow users to express “dislike”. This request has been going on for several years as users would like to show empathy for a FB friend who may be going thru something that is negative in their […]

Cyberbullying and the Law

Parents and educators need to know what the law is related to cyberbulling. Policy and legislation surrounding “cyberharassment” and cyber crimes, in my eyes, will have to be an ever evolving entity due to rapidly changing technology. I’ve linked an article at the bottom that highlights 5 of the key components in a new law, […]

Connecting Through Text

One of the goals of Shape The Sky is to bridge the gap between wisdom gained from over a lifetime and knowledge of current technology and trends. Please check out Nancy Lublin’s Ted Talk entitled “Texting That Saves Lives.” Her talk reinforced my commitment to Shape The Sky’s goal of advancing education and mental health […]

Guide to Ask.FM

Ask.Fm is a popular site/app for young people. It offers a space for exploration via anonymous question and answer posts. I discuss it at all of my training’s. The site has been topic for discussion in more than one of my therapy sessions as a counselor with teens as well. Often parents and professionals will […]

Driving and Navigating in a Digital Era

“Driving When a child turns 16 , according to most state laws, they are ready to learn to drive. We, parents and adults, prepare them. We help them study for the permit test and practice with them and give them guidance on what the test will be like. They often will take sample tests before […]

Digital Knowledge vs. Wisdom

“Let’s take a moment to examine the concepts of knowledge and wisdom and how they relate to social media. Some people may combine knowledge and wisdom in the same category. While they are closely connected and work well together when used symbiotically, there are distinct differences.   Knowledge is gained daily through assignments, tasks, and activities…think […]

Why Did I Start Educating About Social Media?

First, a little information about my background: I’ve been working with teens and tweens since the early ‘90s. I first started my career working direct care at an inpatient psychiatric hospital. There, I learned much about a wide range of mental illness and the resulting behaviors. I then worked in residential settings treating teens struggling […]