Lived experiences of children ages 9-12: A focus on social cognitive learning through participation on social media network sites
The purpose of this qualitative study was to explore the lived experiences of children ages 9-12 participating on social media through social media network sites. A descriptive phenomenological approach allowed the researcher to give voice to children’s life worlds in their participation on social media network sites. Nine children from the North Texas Region informed the researcher of their experiences by completing a background questionnaire, reflective questions activity, and interview with the researcher. Participants were both male and female between the ages of 9-12 years old. Triangulation of background questionnaire, reflective questions activity, and a standardized open-ended interview uncovered two themes describing the essence of children’s social and emotional experiences in participating on social media network sites. The two themes were 1) agents of own happiness and 2) imitating behaviors associated with genders. Implications for parents and educators were proposed in addition to recommendations for future research.