Friday, October 2, 2009

Cell Phones

Cell phones are becoming more and more common in the classroom, despite the best efforts by teachers and administrators. Some believe cell phones do not belong in classrooms because they are a source of distraction and a possible avenue for cheating. I believe cell phones are here to stay. The attempt to rid classrooms of cell phones is futile. So, rather than continue to fight a loosing battle, why not accept that cell phones are now a part of life and embrace their potential for use in the classroom? Liz has explained that more students have access to cell phones than Internet. Why not let students use technology in a technological age? Why not take advantage of a tool many students bring to class everyday? For example, poll everywhere option would be a great learning opportunity in the classroom. Also, many students use cell phones as a calendar. They should be able to use the tools they have and will probably have to use in life post-high school. As far as cheating and cell phones goes, it is an issue that is here to stay. Some students will try to use whatever they have to cheat. If it were accepted that students do have cell phones, teachers would know which students have cell phones. Therefore, on test day or days that cell phones are not required, the teacher can employ methods to ensure cell phones are not misused. For example, they could be put in a basket by the teacher’s desk. Or, hands are required on the desk during assessments. Cell phones are here to stay and I think it is time teachers and administrators use more common sense than authoritarian rules.

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