Teen Tracts

Wednesday, March 12, 2008


Here are some suprising yet not so suprising things about youth culture today:

1. Advertising is a powerful shaper of students. The typical student sees between 3500 and 5000 advertisements in a day. These advertisements are carefully constructed by marketers to create a need for their products, exploiting kids' anxieties and aspirations. These ads zero in on kids spiritual brokeness and promises fulfillment by using the products being advertised. Also, in selling the product the ads teach students a certain world view and these ads shape their behavior.

2. Everything's happening at younger and younger ages: Marketing experts call this "age compression." The strategy is to get students to use adult type products. Along with this comes certain values and attitudes. Today's 6 year olds want to dress and act like 18 year olds. This effects their spirituality. And, it effects their sexual behavior. Also, materialism and violence are affecting students at a younger age.

3. They are engaging in new media in new ways: Because they live in a world where technology is developing at a warp speed, todays teens are more media saturated and media-savvy than any other generation. Many spend from 33 minutes to 8 hours with media - television, computers, and music. Add movies, books, magazines, video games - even doing their home work while involved in these things. Surfing the internet has brought them in touch with areas previously kept from them. The amount of time spent in school, in church and in conversations with adults has become minimal. There is little adult input.