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Raising and guiding our small humans into and through their tweens and teens — and doing it well — has always been tough, but today’s parents face challenges that are increasingly foreign to them, from TikTok to vaping. That’s why SheKnows is talking to teens themselves to help sine a bright light on the issues facing Gen Z (and their parents) right now.

Our ongoing “Hatch Kids” project, now in its fifth year, represents Gen Z (defined as kids born between 1997 – 2012) at all ages and stages, and our stories featuring Hatch Kids reveal teens’ honest and uncensored perspectives on today’s big issues. We’ve asked the same groups of kids to share their thoughts with us on everything from confidence to climate change; sexuality to Super Bowl ads. More recently, we’ve discussed the Black Lives Matter movement, microaggressions, and President Donald Trump’s racism.

And in a special Hatch series we dubbed “QuaranTeens,” these kids opened up about life during COVID-19 quarantine — from the isolation of being stuck at home to the stress and sadness of missing big milestones; from the effect quarantine has had on their mental health to their feelings (and fears) about going back to school in the midst of an unchecked pandemic.