Problems of the children and the youth

Tweens and teens problems. Beating children will be a crime. High-tech and children. Modern family problems and generation gap. Internet as dangerous drugs of present tense. New anti-drugs campaign for young people. Suicide among the teenagers.

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«Problems of the children and the youth»

Подготовила: Димитрова Надежда Александровна

учитель английского языка МОУ СОШ №3

г. Ртищево Саратовской области


I. Problems of the children and the youth

Tweens and teens problems

Beating children will be a crime

High - tech and children

Internet addiction

A generation gap

The problem of love and friendship. Suicide in the young

Family problems

h)New anti-drugs campaign for young people

i) Teenagers kill

II. Conclusion

I. Problems of the children and the youth

a) Tweens and teens problems

Everywhere people are rattled about children and young people, who are described these days as "difficult", "rude", "wild" and "irresponsible". Only some people say that they will grow up to make their country a better place. But in all communities the problem is in the centre of public.

For kids from 8 to 14 a new term "tweens" has recently been coined. They are no longer children nor yet teenagers, just between - tweens. They are said to be the largest number in this age group in recent decades and a generation in a fearsome hurry to grow up.

Instead of playing with Barbies and Legos they are pondering the vagaries of love on TV serials. Girls wear provocative makeup created specially for tweens. Now they have more opportunities than ever because the world's economy has been booming. They are accustomed to a world of information and they will probably be the best educated generation in history. A substantial majority go to college.

Children have got an insatiable desire for the latest in everything - from slacks with labels so that everyone will know that they've got the latest stuff - to CDs. To parents and teachers they can be a nightmare, aping the hair, clothes, and makeup of celebrities twice their age - and they are not always helped to get through a confusion of life in a steady, productive way.

Of course every kid's story is unique and there are certainly lots of youngsters who sail through these years with few problems. But many tweens even with sympathetic and supportive parents say that they feel pressurized to act older than they feel. Ann, who is 10, regularly tells her mother all the things she is worried about - her nightly three hours of homework, the kids in her class who are already pairing off. "I am already doing what some people in the 1800s were not doing until they were full-grown adults. I get up at 6.30 every morning, go to school and have to rush through all my classes, come home and work on my homework, walk Luna, the family dog, twice a day, do chores, I like skating, so I go to ice-skating lessons, watch a little TV, talk on the phone, practice playing the piano. If I am lucky I get to sleep at 11 and then the entire ordeal starts again".

It is difficult to cope with all the things children must do, but some parents try to coach and support them in homework, for example, and are sometimes trapped into doing it.

Nowadays tweens and teenagers have more marketing than ever. There is always something new they want. A lot of money goes to clothes; kids their age desperately need to belong. Almost 50 years ago when girls talked about self-improvement they were thinking of doing good works or doing better at school. Now everything comes down to appearance. They think that having the right "stuff is the quickest way to acceptance”. And their influence goes beyond their cupboards. Tweens - Leonardo Di Caprio fans - were a force behind a phenomenal success of "Titanic". They account for a large percent of CD sales. Children have a say in all kinds of purchases - from soft drinks to cars. But why do they have so much to say.

Guilt is one factor. Parents who are not around much often try to compensate by buying their kids almost everything they ask for. There is also a bridery theory - a new CD can buy co-operation in a hectic week.

Children's influence also grows out of a dramatic change in family relationships. Now people treat each other like members of a group, rather than sons and daughters, mums and dads. If parents ask "What do you want?" or say "I am interested in your opinion”, kids may grow up with a false sense of power and may end up spoilt and unhappy because they are not going to have their way all the time. Letting kids have their way means that it is necessary to set limits.

Children are exposed to adult things from birth. The pressure to act like grown-ups starts at home. Many kids are children who grow up single-parent homes. Too old for child care and not old enough to travel about town on their own they are often alone in the afternoon with only the computer or TV, which sucks up most of their free time. Parents try to regulate the number of hours kids watch TV and monitor films. Experts say that the rush to grow up is due to popular media - tweens magazines and TV shows. Being raised by single parents as well as watching TV can also accelerate the desire of children for being independent and creates behavior problems.

But the electronic universe is more comforting than the outside world that can be scary. Most children do not belong to any clubs and just hang about after school. They are worried about being kidnapped by strangers. Besides, friends are becoming increasingly important during these years. At school and colleges there are cliques who decide what is "cool". Many parents are afraid of their children being exposed to drugs. Kids also began cutting down their classmates as in Littleton (USA). "Wild parties with alcohol, smoking, and trying drugs are not for our children," - parents say. Some of them think that they should act as role models and try to show the kind of behavior they want to see in their children.

As kids move to high school and then to college their life get harder not only because classes get harder and homework increases but because it is time to think of life-long goals and choose a profession.

Every society does have a serious problem. It is not the problem of the younger generation but the society itself. Some communities have such a culture that children cannot find a solace in their friend of family and their heads are being filled with violent pictures they have seen on TV. "Filtering software" is proposed to be installed to block violence that flows across the Internet. But some parents think that focus should be made on home and public organizations. They suggest developing such a curriculum both at schools and colleges that would teach youngsters ethics and construct within their minds and hearts an impenetrable shield against the influence of mass media and mean streets.

There is no way to predict how today's children will turn out. Keeping faith in kids is necessary. They are not bad. They are optimistic. They expect to have a better life than their parents and most say that they like school. Parents are their most important influences but they still need a caring adult in daily life helping them grow up to become all they can be.

b) Beating children will be a crime

The government will soon unveil legal moves to ban the use of cane or belt on children. This behavior of parents will be declared unacceptable and will be made a criminal offence in the UK. These developments were pushed by a case of a boy who was repeatedly and severely beaten by his father with a three-foot pole. The father was acquitted in the English court but such mild judgments are going to be stopped. It is decided that beating is in breach of European Convention on Human Rights that guarantees freedom torture or inhuman degrading treatment. Overwhelming majority of parents knows the difference between smacking and beating, but this has to be clarified in the law. Some parents have made a break from smacking their children. Children themselves see no distinction between smacking, hitting, slipping, and a whack. Some parents think that a reasonable punishment for children is beating them with electrical flex and high heeled shoes. Soon parents can be convicted for administering physical punishment on their children in any form.

c) High - tech and children

The fewer children play video games, or watch TV, the less aggressive they become, suggests a scientific study. The American research looked at the effects of reducing the amount of computer games played, or TV watched by third and fourth graders, who are aged approximately eight or nine.

The children assessed how violent their peers were, and it was judged that the more TV and computer games the children had seen, the more aggressive they were. This means that TV, and, more recently, games, have a direct influence on such behavior.

There are potential benefits in reducing the amount of access children have to TV or computer games. This is supported by the findings of reductions in physical and verbal aggression in children who have limited exposure to TV, video and computer games. The world becomes less scary for such children.

Watching aggressive behavior shapes the way children see the world and their behavior. They learn that angry people do aggressive things and start to imitate if the circumstances prompt similar solutions. High technology now has every opportunity to make the picture on the screen look real with the super quality image, pure sound and even close-to-the natural size.

There is a difference between watching a cartoon where the characters are aggressive but not real. A real aggressive person is a different thing. It is more realistic. Another important development is that if children watch less TV they start interacting with their peers and develop social skills.

The idea of experiment was simple. A computer was installed on the wall facing a slum. Researchers then started watching what was going to happen. Children in the slum were intrigued by the icons on the computer, and without any help gradually figured out how to use the computer and access the Internet.

A computer study is a subject in many schools and many young people have personal computers. About one in three hundred computer owners spend almost all their free time using computers.

Some parents worry about computer games because they think their children won't be able to communicate with real people in the real world. But parents do not need to worry. According to research computer addicts usually do well after they have left school. Parents also do not to worry that computer addiction will make their children become unfriendly and unable to communicate with people. It is not the computer that makes them shy. In fact, what they know about computers improves their social lives. They become experts and others come to them for help and advice.

For most children computer games are a craze. Like any other craze, such as skate-boarding, the craze is short-lived. It provides harmless fun and a chance to escape.

If we did not have these computer addicts, we would not have modern technology. They are the inventors of tomorrow.

d) Internet addiction

Information is becoming the drug of nowadays. The research, conducted among 1000 managers in Britain, America, Europe and Far East shows that, as information sources such as the Internet and the cable news channels proliferate, we are witnessing the rise of a generation of dataholics.

The guest for information can lead to stress. Almost two-third said their leisure time had been curtailed as a result of having to work late to cope with vast amounts of information, 70% reported loss of job satisfaction and tension with colleagues because of information overload.

The study also investigated the habits of the children of 300 managers and found 55% of parents were concerned their children would become information junkies. Forty-six% of parents believed their children spent more time on their PCs than interacting with friends.

In one case a child had to be wheeled with his computer to the dinner table. Sue Feldman, mother of Alexander, 13, a self-confessed Internet-addict, said she had not yet been forced to wheeling her son and computer to her table, but said she often served him sandwiches and crisps at his bedroom computer.

Alexander switches on his computer every day when he returns from school. "I'd confess to spending up to 4 hours a day in the Internet looking for information and speaking to friends. It is like an addiction", Alexander said.

"If I can not get on to my computer or Internet, I do get really frustrated". He spends most of his time finding out the latest information on pop groups and facts for his homework.

"My parents have to tell me to get off the computer, and they complain a lot, but they also see it as a good thing. Practically everyone in my class has a PC with Internet access so all my friends are also on-line. It is the way forward.

Although Internet is intended for getting knowledge, only few users employ it in this way. Other users employ the ICQ programme only for chatting. They can sit for 22 hours at their displays carrying on endless chats with newly made friends. And it is a great problem of the present and future. Such young people do not eat, sleep, work or learn properly. They are only interested in their e-mail boxes. The best way for them is to go on chatting with their ICQ partners without meeting them. In general, all the problems of the youth are linked with the present rather than with the past or future.

Last week, I a private rehabilitation clinic outside Edinburgh, Leo Edwards, a 16-year-old schoolboy, was going through severe withdrawal symptoms. His body often shook violently and uncontrollably, and at mealtimes he regularly threw cups and plates around the dinner room. The boy's addiction had nothing to do with alcohol, drugs, gambling or food. His problem was "Net obsession" - an over-dependency on the Internet.

An international group of psychologists has recently suggested that anyone who surfs the Internet for long periods is clinically ill and needs medical treatment. According to their report, Internet addicts should be treated in the same way as alcoholics, drug addicts, compulsive gamblers and people with eating disorders.

Leo Edwards is not an isolated case. Russell Hopkins, aged 15, from Gateshead in north-east England, is a typical online addict. Every day after school, and after dinner until 3 or 4 in the morning, he will be found in his room surfing the Net or playing computer games. By the end of the day he will have spent more than six hours online. Understandably, his parents are extremely worried. Not only has his school work suffered, but Russell's addiction has also destroyed his social life and his spare time interests. For instance, he has just dropped out of his school's basketball team in order to spend more time at his computer. Instead of spending next weekend having a good time out with friends, he will be spending it indoors surfing the Internet. Russell has recently joined at Internet online support group. It may seem ironic that many of the support groups for Internet addicts are online but at least Russell has sought help. Not everyone does. Dr. Ann Hoffman, who runs an online support group, says, "People do not realize that being online for more than 4 hours a day amounts to addiction and they have a serous problem. I predict that the number of people who join online support groups will have risen dramatically within 3 years.

e) A generation gap

Youth is the time when a person is trying to find his place in the world. And during this search he or she comes across different problems which are as important as those of the adults. The youth of the 21st century face almost the same problems which were acute to their parents when they were young.

One of them is a generation gap. Every generation is unique in its experience. It has its own ideals and system of values concerning every aspect of human life. Adults always complain that the young are not what they were. These words are repeated from generation to generation. Undoubtedly it is correct. In fact today the young are better educated. They grow up more quickly. They derive joy from more freedom. At present the young do not blindly accept the ideals of their parents. For them everything that the adults bear in mind is past history. And this is inevitable; because different generations take different directions.

Moreover, the young look forward and the old people look backward. The young people know what they want. They prefer to make their own mistakes rather than to listen to the warnings of the adults. The young people want to live their own life. They want to overcome their own difficulties without turning back. Unfortunately, the life of the young is frequently determined by the adults. The adults start the war but the young die in it. The young and the adults have different points of view concerning everything. And it generates the conflict of the generations. In the 19th century Ivan Turgenev in his novel "Fathers and Sons" perfectly illustrated the eternal problem of fathers and children's misunderstanding. Many young people have other interests. For some of them getting knowledge is of primary importance. They are fond of reading serious books, listening to serious music. They go to the conservatories and theatres. They are engaged in Hi- Tech through the Internet.

f) The problem of love and friendship. Suicide in the young

family problem children

The problem of love is very important for the young people. Romanticism and idealism very often accompany the love of the young. Their belief in eternal love can end dramatically. Today nobody doubts about the depth of their passion. It is regrettable, but the young are not always ready to have stable relations.

Suicide among the teenagers male population has reached crisis point with 72% increase in reported cases over 20 years, the UK survey says. What are the reasons of this suicide? The first reason is an unhappy love. Here are some teenagers' letters with the answers of psychologists which were published in the youth magazines such as "Just seventeen", "Jackie", MIZZ".

Now we hate each other.

"I am 16 years old and have been going out with my boyfriend for 2 years, and I thought I really loved him. Then one day we had sex and it was the biggest mistake of our lives. We now both hate each other and can not look each other in the eye. We have not spoken for nearly a month and I feel really dirty, and I know all his friends are calling me a slag because he told them what happened. Now everyone thinks I am easy. What can I do?"

Answer: I hate to say it but this boy deserves a bit of a sharp slap. Doesn't he realize that he played quite a major part in this whole messy venture? So sex did not work out and that is no one's fault. The first time isn't always brilliant despite what some films show, so do not judge this unfortunate experience as the norm. You have nothing to feel guilty or bad about as you haven't done anything wrong. On the other hand, he should be ashamed of his behavior. People's reactions to his comments will blow over and they will see him for the idiot he really is. Till then, keep your head up. After all, you have done nothing wrong at all.

No sex without love.

"I am a virgin and I can not decide whether I should have sex for the first time with someone. I do not know - for the sake of experience. It is just that when someone special comes along and we have sex it will be very special and good because I will know what I am doing. I do not want my first time to be a disaster."

Answer: Your letter really worries me. You seem to think of sex as some sort of game whereby you can practice with anyone in order to make it perfect. Sex is only perfect when you do it with someone you care about and trust. I doubt very much that practicing with just anyone will prepare you for this moment. In any case, when the time comes to have sex with someone you are close to, he won't expect you to be an expert, because it is not a competition. Believe me, sex without love is like swimming without water. Do yourself a favor - wait until you feel ready and sure before you do anything rash.

Scared of kissing.

"People at school make fun of me because I have never snogged a boy. I have had several chances, but every time it happens I end up chickening out. People think I am weird and I am beginning to worry there must be something wrong with me.”

Answer: Kissing with someone should be seen as some sort of test to pass, and there is nothing wrong with wanting to wait until you find a boy you feel confident with. Stop worrying that there is anything wrong with you and try to accept that you have every right to take things at your own place. Take it from me - kissing is nothing to be afraid of!

Dumped for a new boyfriend

“ I am feeling really angry at the moment and I do not know what to do. Ever since I was about three I have been friends with this girl, we have been through everything together. And now she has dumped me for a new boyfriend. I am really sick of it, she totally ignored all this week and has gone off with her boyfriend. I do have other friends, but I am just so upset she has just thrown away our friendship after all these years. I do not know what to do about it now. What do you suggest?"

Answer: Try talking to your friend, perhaps she is so caught up with her new boyfriend that she really does not realize she's excluding you. Unfortunately, if your friend purposely chose to dump you for her new boyfriend then there is nothing you can do but review your friendship. Ask yourself - is your friendship real? And remember, friendships change with time. Often the best friends we have from childhood grow up and away from us but it is natural and normal. Other best friends will take this place.

I hate not having a boyfriend.

I'm having a problem at school. My best friends all have boyfriends and they see them all the time. They go out every Saturday with them, and even though they ask me along, I feel like a leftover. Sometimes at break their boyfriends will come over and they'll all ignore me completely. I wish I had a boyfriend -1 really hate not having one. I know this situation would be so much better if I was like my friends.

Answer: When you say that your situation would be better if you had a boyfriend I believe that you want a boyfriend for the wrong reasons. There are plenty of people who are single and yet have friends who are not. Having a boyfriend does not make you more of a person, only you can be that. Your friends are being pretty silly if they cannot see how important it is to keep their relationships going. Friends can last a lifetime, but boyfriends come and go. Try explaining to your friends how out of place you are feeling. After all, they know they need you as much as you need them.

Shy and spotty.

I am a 15-year-old girl and I have a very serious problem. At my age I should have had a boyfriend by now, but I have not. I feel no one is attracted to me. I do not know if it is because I am very shy around boys, but I think it is to do with how I look. I am quite spotty and quiet. I wish I could have plastic surgery, but I cannot afford it. Please, could you help me?

Answer: A recent survey showed that boys prefer personality and a sense of humor above looks when it came to picking a girlfriend. I am sure if you asked girls they would say the same thing. Most people are shy in certain situations, and no one will think any less of you for being this way. And if a person has spots, so what? You do not need plastic surgery - you need a serious dose of self-confidence. In time your spots will go. Remember, it is not what you look like; it is who you are that matters.

Hanging has replaced self-poisoning from car exhaust fumes and taking an overdose as the most common suicide method among 15- to 19-year-old men. The number of male suicide in this age group rose from 55 per million of the population in 1970 to 100 per million of the population at the turn of the century. Statistics underestimates the true extent of the problem because coroners prefer to classify many suicidal deaths as "accidental". It is always a mistake to look for one single cause but it is probably a crisis of confidence among the young people.

A crisis of confidence could arise for a variety of reasons including psychiatric disorders, disturbed family or partner relationships, unemployment and involvement in crime, leading to contact with the judicial system. A culture of drugs, alcohol delinquency is blamed for teenagers turning to suicide when their grip on life spirals out of control. Yet another reason is genetic variation and inability to regulate one' mood and anxiety levels. Suicide rate among girls in the 15-19-year-old age group has decreased slightly. Suicide rates are the highest in Finland and Hungary, and low in Italy and Spain. UK levels are about the European average.

To choose a good friend is a very important problem. It is a well-known proverb “ A friend in need is a friend indeed". That is why everyone tries to make friends with cheerful and true persons who can understand you and with whom it is simple and interesting to speak.

g) Family problems

Young people have problems with their parents. What are they? They are concerned with education, money, employment, hobby, spending their free time, communication and the like. And of course, one of the most urgent problems is the accommodation problem. Few young people in country have their own apartments. In the they share the apartments with their parents even after getting married. It is a problem to get a good education and a very difficult problem of choosing the future profession.

All teenagers want to have a lot of money to dress well, to go to the theatres, to visit foreign countries, to eat what they want, to buy books... How can they solve all these problems? It is possible to do it. Some boys wash cars, others sell newspapers, help old persons. These problems must be solved in a proper way with the help of grown-ups.

Psychologists ' Survey

A fool despises his father's instruction,

But he that regards reproof is prudent.

The Bible. Proverbs,15:5

A group of psychologists carried out an anonymous survey among some schoolchildren and asked them to write answers to the question:”Are you happy in your family?” Here are some of their answers.

K.S.'s answer:

:Three times I attempted to commit suicide. It was not I wanted to die, but to get hem to take notice of me. Well, I mean, I want my parents to respect my personality, to acknowledge my rights and to share in my sufferings and difficulties. On the one hand, they do show their anxiety about me. Mum gets really annoyed if I miss dinner time and do not have regular meals. She also feels sorry for me when I have to sit up late with my homework. But they do not trust me and are always suspecting me of wrongdoings. I am sick and tired of being scolded all the time and threatened with loss of love.

B.T.' s answer:

“I am happy to have my parents. We do a lot together as a family. We enjoy walks and picnics and going to exhibitions or concert halls. I owe all that I can do and know to my parents. My mother is a teacher of French and she started teaching it to me when I was in cradle. When I was three, my Dad taught me English and I began learning my native language at six. I must say that I get on in the three of them perfectly well and in all other school subjects too.

We have got a rich library of our own, and I have every opportunity to read modern and classical literature by French, English and Russian authors. My favorite hour of the day is supper time when we all get together. It is not really the food that we enjoy - though Mum is an excellent cook! - but the pleasure of snaring in one another's affairs and there's usually a lot of laugher and jokes.

I never hesitate to tell Mum and Dad my secrets and they are always ready and willing to help me with their advice or cautions.

My Dad is a prosperous businessman and ... (I suspect, you will hardly believe me) he is a talented rock musician as well. We are his first audience and critics. But I am sure my entire Dad composes is great!"

A.P's answer:

"I do not remember a day in my life when my busy parents could spare me a minute of their precious time. Well, they give me pocket money every time I ask, but it is nothing compared with what I really need. Sometimes I think they regret that they have me at all. „ Whenever I try to get them to talk to me, they find hundreds of reasons not to do it. I feel very lonely".

M.D. 's answer:

"When my Mum is busy doing the homework, the washing and cleaning and that all stuff, I am always try to help her. Though many of my schoolmates find it really boring. But I feel sorry for my Mum as she's always rushing around an d she has to go to work as well. Though she has loads of different things to do in a day, she still finds time to ask about my schoolwork. If I'm assigned a composition on literature or something else she discusses it eagerly with me and does her best to get me to think over each point seriously and deeply.

We have a common hobby, too. It is playing the guitar and writing songs. The character of our songs is different, as well as the genres we work in, but the premiere of a new song is always exciting. Though, I must admit, we never spare each other's feelings expressing our opinions.

We have common friends, too. When my friends come to see me, my Mum joins us, and they never mind her company and talk to her very openly.

I love my Mum because she understands me."

The same group of psychologists asked parents to write answers to the question: «Are you happy about your children?"

B.S's answer:

"We live in a difficult and selfish time, when everyone looks after himself and does not worry about the effect this may have on others. Money and material benefit are the new gods of many. What can we actually expect from our children? But I am happy to say that my son does not fit this crazy time and world. He is 17, and I do not remember a day when he distressed us. He does equally well in the classroom and on the sports field.

He has lots of friends, but never yields to the pressure of his mates, who invariably respect him for his having his own opinion and views. His firm and quiet disposition fascinates both his companions and teachers. He reads a lot and is sometimes called a “walking encyclopedia”.

He was once attacted by a group of seniors and had his nose broken. My son knew that he was mistaken for another boy and could easily put an end to this incident but he preferred to say nothing and accepted his bruises with calm dignity.

Last term he was asked to teach physics to his class because their teacher had fallen ill. In hort, I am proud of my son and I have got much to learn from him.”

C.D's answer:

“I have to work much to provide for my daughter and myself. She is 10 and I have no one to take care of her when I am away at my office. As my salary is not big enough, I have to agree to work overtime and of course, we see very little of each other. But our weekends have turned out to be very miserable for both of us. My daughter is very rude to me and the opinions of her peers are more important to her than mine".

h) New anti-drugs campaign for young people

New survey shows that Britain's drug problem is growing. The highest increase in drug use is among teenagers. How they are convinced to stop?

The problem

Last year, a European survey showed that the number of teenagers who had tried drugs was 6 % in Greece, 15% in France and 30% in Britain.

Statistics show that drug use by British teenagers has doubled since 1989. Half teenagers who were interviewed admitted they had tried at least one type of drug. 70% said they been offered drugs in the past 3 months.

The drugs that the government is most worried about are stimulant drugs such as Speed and Ecstasy (or "e" as it is commonly known) and hallucinogenic drugs such as LSD. They are worried that many young people believe these drugs to be exciting and fashionable. They think that many of teenagers will be influenced by films such as "Transporting" and "Pulp fiction", which show attractive people taking drugs.

The solution.

The government decided that it needed a new anti-drugs campaign. However, before it did this, it studied young people's attitudes. The survey showed that teenagers knew that drugs were bad for them but they could not actually name any health risk associated with particular drugs. It also showed that 61% of teenage drug-users would consider stopping using drugs if they thought they were a serious danger to their health.

It was also understood that many teenagers ignored drugs warnings in schools because they thought they were childish. In fact, it was proved that in some cases, the reason for taking drugs was to rebel against warnings from adults.

Using the results of the survey, new campaign has been started. The new campaign hopes to treat teenagers like adults. It informs young people of the health risks associated with particular drugs. It does this with photos of teenagers. On the advertisements, the parts of their bodies, which can be damaged by drugs, are indicated by biological diagrams showing the health risks. Many teenagers try drugs as a “dare” to show their friends that they are not scared. Often their friends insist until the person says “yes”. The health authority hopes that the ads will help teenagers to say `no” to this and be able to have good reason to say it. In addition to posters, the health authority has also made radio ads and put the number of their drugs helpline (a telephone number that can be called confidentially for help) in a lot of places. The people at the helpline advise people what to do if they have a drug problem or need more information about the dangers of drugs.

Drug facts

· 31% of teenagers interviewed could not name a health risk associated with Ecstasy. Eton (one of the England's most expensive schools) and several other schools introduced drug tests. If the tests show a pupil has used an illegal drug, he/she is expelled, and has to leave the school forever.

· It was discovered that children of 10 years old were being sold hallucinogenic drugs (LSD. The drugs had pictures of cartoon characters on them to attract the children.

· 49% of young drug-users say they would stop using drugs if they thought they were getting addicted.

· 35% of young drug-users say they do not know why they use them. Most young drug-users say that they listen more to what their friends say about drugs than to what the media say about drugs.

· The number of young males taking drugs is higher than the number of young females.

· The greatest increase in drug use in the past 8 years is by 15-16 years olds.

· Many people argue that smoking kills more people than drugs.

· 9, 75% of British 12-13-year-olds smoke at least one cigarette a week.

· 26, 4% of British 14-15-year-olds smoke at least one cigarette a week.

j) Teenagers kill

This shooting at Columbia School in Denver (USA) was the latest in a string of school attacks that had horrified the USA. Both the criminals and their victims were teenagers. The spate of violence forced America to ask difficult questions about what lead a child to pick up a gun and kill another. On the 16th of April a second-year high school pupil fired two shotgun blasts in a school hallway in Idaho. No one was injured. In May, 15-year-old boy killed two fellow pupils at school in Springfield, Oregon, and then murdered his parents. On the same day, in Washington State, a 15-year-old boy shot himself in the head after taking his girlfriend off the school bus at gunpoint. He shot himself, while 14-year-ild girl was not injured.

Here are some more similar incidents. An 18-year-old boy shot and killed a student in a school parking 3 days before they were to graduate, apparently because they had argued about a girl. A 14-year-old boy opened fire at a graduation dance, killing a teacher and wounding two students and another teacher. A 14-year-old boy shot and killed 3 girls at school, while they took part in a prayer circle. Five others were wounded. A 16-year-old killed his mother, before going to school where he shot 9 students. Six boys, aged between 16 and 18, were charged with conspiracy to commit murder. A study by the Department of Education found that as many as 10% of US schools suffered serious incidents of violence. The shooting has fuelled the raging debate on gun law in the USA. The right to keep arms is written in the second amendment of the US Constitution. The frightening link between carrying guns and school violence has prompted to question whether this is reasonable.

II. Conclusion

In my opinion, these problems are very actual and important. A child is a unit of society's life. It can be compared to a cage of a human body. If something prevents cages to function normally if influences in general on the whole organism.

I think that the only way to solve the problems should be tolerant and patient. There are very popular sources of information which influence the young people: TV, radio, Internet, newspapers, magazines. It is difficult for young people to decide what is right and what is false. The role of the old people is to help them to find out the proper way.

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