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Tips on working/talking with teenage kids? (Teachers, parents... help!) Answered

Specifically teenage girls. 10-13. Right now I'm helping teach an after school program for middle school girls. We teach them about being healthy - eating right, having good body image, exercising properly, etc. We have very few volunteers, but next week it's just going to be me and the site leader. I called my mom to ask for advice, and she laughed and said she never figured any of this stuff out, but if she thinks of something, she'll call me. :P We have 20-30 girls depending on the day. Any ideas for keeping them focused and on task? This is really my first time working with kids where I'm in an authority position, so I do need a little help and encouragement. Normally I'm just on the sidelines helping out and not stepping in and telling people what to do! Any words of advice? :D

Discussions

Try being funny, tell them jokes, make your tasks funny :) make them laugh!

Ohh s*h*t is the first thing that crops into my mind . I would recommend at least ASKING them to sop txt'ing long enough to listen to you. Don't try to be "hip" funny, you'll fail epically. You have the good fortune of being rather humorous naturally, so dont fake anything and be yourself. Well thats my two bits..

Ack, the cell phone thing. Have I mentioned I hate cell phones? They're not as bad as some kids I've encountered, though. Seriously, question of the day: what could a seven year old possibly have to talk about for hours on a cell phone? (I've seen it happening where I work and I want to understand.) "Well, Nicole came over and we played barbies. Her barbies are ugly. Mine have better clothes. Then I ate some Cheetos. My mom told me to stop eating Cheetos and I was all like, 'NO MOM I LOVE CHEETOS!' and she took them away. Can you believe that? Did you hear that Kevin pulled Sarah's hair on recess? He's such a meanie. Oh, and Eric has cooties! I heard it from a very reliable source... your mom." And I will try very hard not to be hip.

I can't believe how many seven year olds have cell phones now a days! And half of them have a nicer cell phone than I do.

Bleh, I don't even have a Cell phone, And I am 13!

My boy keeps falling in the creek/pond with his! I make him carry it when he's hunting/fishing/trapping.

i fell in a lake with mine once (the lake was filled with poop) (and i saw horseshoe crabs in it once)

My brother has broken/lost a bunch of phones when it comes to water... The most memorable times was when he dropped it off the boat he was working on and the other time was when he dropped it in his glass of beer :P

Ha ha ha....dropped it in a glass of beer  (sorry for laughing, but that WAS funny).  I have never  dunked my cell phone, but I have washed my wallet in the toilet at least once (accidentally of course  :-)  It gets caught, being in the back pocket, and flips out just as the water is going down from a flush
what?  TMI ?   :-) 
 

I laughed so hard when I heard my mom talking to my sister about it XD

I've almost done that with my phone, but it was my sweatshirt pocket it would fall out of :P Thankfullly it didn't fall in... 

Yeah, my pens and such fall out of my shirt pockets a lot....thankfully they are not as pricey :-) 
 

...I have washed my wallet...

Thanks to poor pocket-checking, I used to have the cleanest driving licence in the UK.

It was so clean you could almost see through it...

I tend to get totally OCD about pockets....I have ruined many a "card" or other  paper with vital info on it, by not cleaning them out before they get laundered.   Oh, and I often carry a pen with me....even one tucked into my t-shirt, which if forgotten, can ruin a whole load of wash  *sigh*
 

Haha. That Reminds me, Once me and my friend were on a bike ride, And we wanted to go under a bridge to see what was under it, So when we get under the bridge, We both sit down. And of course, His cell phone comes out of his pocket and slides down into the canal.

I Was laughing so hard, But luckily it survived

And later that month, it got ran over by a car

A certain menmber of the skunk-family (who shal remain nameless) dropped a cellphone in a large bowl of soup. It did not survive.

i'm 12 and got mine a year ago we got it for me cause i got caught in a tornado(see my comment in "my biggest childhood crisis!" so my parents wanted me to have one (a few weeks later i fell in a lake with it)

I had a nice Samsung J600E, my first half decent and NEW phone, all others have been from my mum, dad or brother etc. etc. And they were only if I was going out of the house (over protective mum). Then my J600E broke, so im back to using my mums OLD phone AGAIN lol.

Oh and i forgot to mention Im 13 too

The only reason I had a cell phone when I was 13 was because my mom won one XD

well my nine year old sis has a cell (as well as me) just for emergencies etc. the camera and games are just a bonus!

I know right!!! I've had the same cell phone for almost 5 years but one of my friends just got a phone with a color screen. Besides, I know highshoolers that dont have phones

Yeah it's crazy! I remember last year on the way home from school something was wrong with the bus and the bus driver was like "Who has a cell phone?" and a whole bunch of hands went up in the front of the bus.

I have a hand me down cell phone that I have absolutely no use for. It's almost always turned off (normally for months at a time) and whenever I do use it, it's for urgent situations. I just don't need a cell phone. I can't text worth a darn either, it amazes me how fast everyone can punch those buttons without even looking at the thing!

I think I only keep mine off for a few days at a time, but when it's on it's usually someplace where I can't find it :P I don't really think I would mind not using my cell phone so much, except whenever I go someplace my parents are like "Got your cell phone?" It's crazy when people can text really fast while they're not even looking at the buttons! I don't think I could ever do that.

I agree EXACTLY with you. It's just a pest when I'm about to leave the house and the parents make you search the whole house for the dreadead mobile.

Yeah and then it turns out that it was either stuck between the couch cushions or right in front of your face. I don't even know how many times that has happened to me XD

This entire conversation just boggles my mind LOL. I was at least 16-17 before I was able to even get an extension line put in on our land line at home to my room, and I had to pay for that (I ran the cord though). ;-)

Yep, fortuanately my mum and dad never get rid of their old ones so if mine dies i just use one of theirs, even just going to the shop "john do you have your mobile with you" "I dont know where it is and it is out of battery" "ok, take dads.". lol

I get free texts, so i use tem up and i get used to it, like touch typing (which im hopless at) lol.

Cell phones are the scourge of the earth.  For a while I was jealous of all the other kids that had one, and now, when I can get one on my own, I choose not to.

There are too many risks, complications, and general crap associated with the blasted things.  I might get one later for emergencies, but if I really need to communicate with someone, I'll wait till I get home.

This comes after my sister managed to rack up a 500 dollar cell phone bill. 

. But all those things are IMPORTANT to seven year olds. ;) . One of the girls that comes over to the house to use the computer got her cell phone taken away when she ran up a $200+ bill on text msgs alone! I forget how many msgs she said it was, but I remember it was over 3 dozen per day. When she was telling me the story, she borrowed her friend's phone to text msg someone. LOL

Hahaha, oh wow! That is insane. I think I maybe send 3 dozen in a month. :P Maybe I just wasn't as social as a kid because we didn't have this kind of stuff, but I have a hard time wrapping my brain around it!

. Let's see ... I have sent a grand total of ... hmmm ... one text msg in my life. When I first got a cell phone, someone I didn't know sent me a text msg and I replied with "wrong number." I'm sure text msging is handy for some ppl, but I have no use for it. If you have my phone number, then talk to me, baby! If you want to type at me, you can find me on Ibles.
.
. It's not that strange. Humans are social creatures and kids are even more so. I think "because we didn't have this kind of stuff" sums it up pretty well. You're just getting old. But, as with a fine wine, that just means you're getting better. At this point in my life, I'm damn near perfect.

My wife uses text messages as a way to communicate when she's in meetings (and can't rightly call out or answer her phone). When I'm in meetings, I (and my colleagues) usually have our laptops open, so we can use e-mail in a similar way.

Or, you could text from your laptop and email from your phone. :-D

I can beat that, I can beat that! I've sent no text messages! I don't even own a cell phone!

Well, the wife and I have one....mostly for emergencies, and I have sent like 3 text messages in the past 2 years of having it. But we are thinking of switching to a phone that only charges when used, rather then the monthly $40+ since we use it so few times.

well, with parents like mine whom search my phone and computer fro msgs, well just my phone they are PC illiterate (mum can Kinda use her netbok but asks me for help every 2 seconds lol) I had a password on my phone when it was in one peice lol. but anyway, i only really text, which is a bit annoying cos most buissinesses dont display their mobiles in the yellow pages. but if my mum or dad hears me on the phone they alays ask "who is it john?"

Ah, I'll agree on that. I hate using it to have a conversation with someone; why not just call and talk? Typing on that little keypad takes too much effort. But, text messaging can be handy in some situations. My over-protective mother always wants me to "tell me when you get there!" when I ride my bike to the park, store, etc. A quick text message would be preferred over a phone call in this situation.

I'm a pretty good im'er i use txt and email for things that need to be in a text format.

Someone lets their kid come over and use your computer? Wow, I guess looking like Jesus is a good thing...

. I've wondered about that myself. Most of the kids live next door, so I guess their parents have figured out I'm not as dangerous as I look (Chuck Manson would probably be a better comparison that Jesus), but I've never met (or even talked to on the phone) the parents of some of the kids. I don't remember letting my child go to a stranger's house when she was that age.

ahh well, UNcle Nacho's gone and done it again...