Kids, Screens & Phones

NEW for 2023-24 is our Kids, Screens & Phones program. This is all about Internet safety, “good and bad” ways of using different apps, cyberbullying, privacy settings, the ills of comparison culture, and what to do when contacted by a stranger…

Rolling out in September 2023, TK1 will bring our “near-peer” model of teenagers from our Youth Council to talk with K-8 students (under the supervision of TK1 staff) to schools across Taos County. Using fun visuals and games, we’ll talk all about the apps they use every day, from Instagram to TikTok to Snapchat, how to install privacy settings, what cyberbullying is, how to turn off AI within these apps, what SnapMaps are, and how, on an app-by-app basis, we can use these responsibly, safely, and with balance.

Alongside these classroom teaching moments, we’ll work directly with parents, grandparents, guardians, and the wider community to raise awareness of the many dangers posed by unregulated screen time. At our new HQ space, we’ll convene Parent Dialogues and Tech Workshops, where the brilliant kids on our Student Squad will install parental-control apps, set privacy settings and app limits, and help the community come to terms with the MAJOR ELEMENT shaping our kids’ lives: their screens. Whether we admit it or not, screen use contributes directly to loneliness, anxiety, sleeplessness, eating disorders, depression, gender dysmorphia, suicidal ideation and more…

When every family fights over screen time, we all need better strategies for our kids to thrive in the digital world


With support from the Robert T. Keeler Foundation and

The New Mexico Broadband Equity Fund

Above: Youth Council members Sam, Carlos, and Mia talking about TikTok at Enos Garcia Elementary in May, 2023

Here’s an article from The Atlantic on Banning Phones in Schools.

Scary Statistics about our Kids and their Online Habits:

  • 9 Hours: Amount of time per day 11-14 year olds spend on screens outside of school. Centers for Disease Control. Website.
  • 63% of US teens use Snapchat every day. Website.
  • 62% of the US population accesses YouTube daily. Website.
  • 63% of US teens: online harassment is “a major problem”. Website.
  • 55% of US teens have ad recall after watching 0-2 seconds of an ad on Snapchat. Website.
  • $13b: TikTok’s 2022 ad revenue; projected $27b by 2027. Website.
  • 1 billion people access TikTok every month. Website.
  • 40% of TikTok users don’t use Facebook. Website.
  • 95 minutes: daily usage for average TikTok user. Website.
  • 67% of all TikTok users in the US are 13-24 years old. Website.
  • Between 1/3 and 2/3rds: Americans who report “being lonely”. The New York Times. February 14, 2023. Link to article.
  • TikTok is a “superior system, powered by artificial intelligence… of information finding users, rather than the other way around.” The New York Times. December 20, 2022. How TikTok Became a Diplomatic Crisis. Link to article.
  • “In terms of brain development, pre-teens and teens are the perfect targets for addictive products. Social-media interactions… activate the pathways in the rewards center of the brain and produce the neurotransmitter dopamine, which helps motivate the repetition of the behavior. This potential for addiction is only increased by the use of addictive psychological tactics, such as engagement-driven algorithms and notification features.” From The Growing Number of Social Media Lawsuits Highlights the Risks of Social Media Self-Harm and Addiction Among Children and Teens. Link to article.
  • “The number of Americans who report having no close friends at all has quadrupled since 1990… An average American in 2021 spent 58 percent less time with friends than in 2013.” The New York Times. February 14, 2023. Link to article.
  • “Modern technology isn’t changing us. It’s changing society. This attention economy has commoditized our time and turned us into products to be bought and sold.” Mark Manson. Link to webpage.

Queerious is an innovative TK1 after-school program for young learners to explore their creativity, express themselves, and delve into the world of media production. Designed for but not exclusive to the LGBTQIA+ community, Queerious provides a safe and supportive environment where students can come together to create talk shows, podcasts, broadcasting news, documentaries, and more while celebrating their (often emerging) identities and experiences. Leading Queerious is TK1’s own Dani Cervantes.

In Queerious, students use the power of storytelling and media production to amplify their voice. Through hands-on workshops and collaborative projects, participants learn valuable skills in camera operation, audio recording, video editing, scriptwriting, and hosting, all while exploring topics that are relevant to their lives, emerging identities, and communities. Activities:

1. Talk Shows and Broadcast News. Students host these, using the platform to discuss anything they like – including LGBTQIA+ issues, personal stories, interviewing guest speakers, and engaging in meaningful conversations about identity, diversity, and inclusion.

LINK: Talk Show with Madolin and Jesus

LINK: Talk Show with Madolin and Lee

2.Podcasts. Participants produce their own podcasts, exploring topics ranging from LGBTQIA+ history and activism to pop culture and current events. Students have the freedom to explore their interests and passions in the world of audio storytelling.

LINK: Podcast on Appearance

3.Documentaries. Through the art of documentary filmmaking, students shine a spotlight on important issues facing them, exploring topics that are often overlooked or misunderstood. From personal narratives to community profiles, students research, interview subjects, film, and edit their own docs.

4.Camera Workshops. Here, students learn the fundamentals of camera operation, composition, lighting, and cinematography. Whether they’re shooting interviews for a documentary or capturing footage for a talk show, students gain practical skills and technical expertise that allow them to bring their creative visions to life on screen.

Throughout the program, Queerious fosters a supportive and inclusive community where students feel empowered to express themselves authentically and explore their identities in a positive and affirming environment. By providing a platform for, among others, LGBTQIA+ voices to be heard and celebrated, Queerious helps students develop confidence, leadership skills, and a sense of belonging as they navigate their journey as young creatives.


With Generous Support from: Awesome without Borders and the Envision Fund at the Santa Fe Community Foundation.