In a recent Instagram post from Discount Dance Ambassador, 14-year-old @bellakulmer received 6,746 likes and 47 comments. Bella has 22,000 followers.

Social media is a force in the world of dance.  How can a parent teach their dancer to harness this force and use it to further their appreciation of dance?

The Dark Side

Bullying, popularity contests, lost productivity, distractions, fear of missing out, cybersecurity…

The reasons to unplug go on and on.  Rather than dismiss these demons, it’s best to face them head-on. 

Have an open and honest discussion with your child about how to handle these issues.  Brainstorm ideas on how to manage these situations in advance.  This will give them the tools to handle tough situations when they occur.

Still feeling overwhelmed?  Take this quiz to find out where you stand as a parent in our new social world? 

May the Force be with You

When its forces are used for good, the power of social media can be astounding. Dancers can use it to connect with other dancers.  Studios can use their social media channels to promote shows at a low cost and broader reach to younger audiences. 

The decision to start using social media and to what extent is going to be different for each dancer.  The good news is, the major players, like Facebook and Instagram, are making their platforms safer for kids.  Facebook recently launched Messenger Kids, which allows kids to register on the app without using a phone number.

Just Jump In

The rules are unclear, and we are all still figuring this out as we go.  We want to keep our dancers safe, but we want them to take advantage of the resources available to them online. 

Parenting isn’t an easy gig. The key is to keep the lines of communication open. Collaborate to create a positive footprint for your dancer on social media and face those demons as a united force.