The Tool of the Future
Ray Kurzweil, winner of the 1999 National Medal of Technology award, once said “Mobile phones are misnamed. They should be called gateways to human knowledge.” In our society, cell phones have become widely used devices. Smartphones, in particular, have grown over the past ten years. Most people do not leave their house without their phone. Cell phones in schools have been a very controversial topic as technology is continuously innovating.
Teachers and students should learn to embrace the technology that people use in their everyday lives.Students should be allowed to use cell phones in schools because not only could cellphones be used in an educational way, but also students could contact parents in emergency situations and attain more responsibilities. To begin, cell phones could be used in schools as educational tools. According to a study done by Daily Mail,”‘pupils were often surprised at the thought that mobile phones could be used for learning, almost all pupils said they had enjoyed the project and felt more motivated'” (Clark). Students were driven to learn when allowed to use phones as an informative tool. To continue, undergraduates will learn to use their phone as a researching tool (HRF).
Students would be able to use their phone in different practices including using them as calculators, researching online, and playing educational games. Smartphones could also be used in schools as an access to the internet. This would benefit less fortunate communities who do not have the access to computers but do have smartphones at home. Also, according to a study done in New York City, when they lifted the ban on cellphones students started to see their phones as learning tools rather than a source of entertainment (Kiema). When the ban on cellphones in schools was lifted, it showed students how to use their phones in more appropriate ways.
This could improve students learning inside and outside of school.Many argue that cellphones in school could prevent learning because it promotes cyberbullying (Cyberbullying Research Center). These people claim that students will be taking pictures of students that do not want their picture taken. However, students will use their phones in an educational approach and not as a source of entertainment. Furthermore, teachers will show students how to use their phones appropriately inside and outside of school by having consequences for their actions. Clearly, students could use cell phones in an academic way which will motivate them to learn.
Another way that phones will benefit schools is that cell phones could help students stay safe by communicating with the police or parents during emergency situations.When students who attended Chardon High School in Ohio were faced with a school shooting, in 2012, they used their phones to call parents and call 911 (DNews). Students would be learning in a safer environment if they were allowed to use phones in school. They could call during medical emergencies, violent attacks, fires, kidnapping, and other problems sight on scene without having to look for nearby phones or get a teacher or guardian. To continue, students could call to contact their parents and tell them to pick them up (Cirelli). Cell phones could benefit students to call parents if they become ill.
Likewise, parents should be able to get in touch with students during school. During school students often forget something at home or need to text a parent to tell them they are staying after school for an activity or going to a friends house. Instead of giving parents a two-minute notice after school, students should be able to text their parents during a free period (Cirelli). People may think that when they have their phone on them then it will go off and makenoise that could put one in danger during lockdowns and other emergency situations (Cirelli). However, students would not be in danger if they put their phone on silent during these incidents.
If students put their phones on silent, then they could be able to contact police forces and their parents when they face an emergency. Thus, students who could have communication devices with themcould learn in a safer environment. Not only do cell phones in school allow students to learn in a safer environment, but students could learn more responsibilities.According to a Laura Clark from the Daily Mail cell phones in school, “Give students more opportunity to express themselves and have more freedom” (Clark). When students are on their phones they could express themselves and learn in a different way individually by using their personalized device. Students have more freedom and are able to learn more responsibilities.
Furthermore, Kate Taylor, a publisher working for The New York Times thinks that, “Students need to learn how to use their phone at appropriate times” (Taylor).With cell phones continually innovating, more people are buying phones. In the future, former students will not know how to act in a meeting or job interview without checking their phone if they do not have previous experience. If students are able to use their phone in classrooms on an everyday basis students will learn to have their phone with them without being distracted.To continue, according to natural history writer Patrick Barkham,a business and education teacher at Wyggeston and Queen Elizabeth I College, allowed students to use phones in class. He saw major improvements in behavior with the students.
He also said that there was less inappropriate phone use (Barkham). When the ban on cellphones was lifted students learned to use their phones responsibly and as learning tools. This improved the behavior of the students.Some critics may argue that cellphones in schools are a distraction (Taylor). These people believe that phones are an automatic disturbance.
However, students need to learn to deal with distractions. Cell phones are only becoming more and more popular and in the future during meetings former students will be preoccupied if they have not had previous experience using their phones in working environments. In closing, students will be more successful if they are allowed to use phones in classrooms because they will learn self-control when given more responsibilities. As aforementioned, cell phones should be accepted in schools. Cell phones in school not only give students an opportunity to use their device as a learning tool, but also students have the instant connection to parents and police forces if an emergency situation occurs, and the ability to have more responsibilities.
Technology is continuously innovating and students and teachers should learn to accept the technology that will be with us for the rest of our lives. Cell phones could be used as an everyday classroom tool just like pencils, pens, and paper.Phones are the future. Phones are now. Schools need to stop neglecting technology and start embracing it.
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