Our Teens: Out of Touch With Reality

Many schools cannot tolerate the use of cell phones from the division it creates from the instructor and the students. Most teachers and professors will not even allow a device to be placed on the desk as they already know students will be tempted to whip them out as soon as their backs turn. Because of this, students are jeopardizing their own education and social health within schools. Teens don’t realize how much social media can interfere with both academics and social lives.

Along with this a controversy, a school in Michigan has now become lenient with their policy on cell phone usage. In the article Goodrich High School pilot program to allow cell phone use during lunch, passing times it states “Although many concerns were voiced Monday from Goodrich School Board members, a cell phone pilot program was approved 6–1 for the high school to allow students to use their phones and other devices throughout the school day” (Schuch 2017). It seems that educators are now giving in to students bad habits and lack of interest, but isn’t this the time to stay strong before technology gradually grows in these kids hands?

In the same article, the principal of Goodrich High School states ““For me not allowing cell phones was like locking me out of the library,” said Flushing High School Principal Jason Melynchek. “Why would we stop them from looking up something, having access to information? This is what our technology is providing us” (Melynchek 2017). Although he makes a good point that a student may want to look at any facts or any information needed, what student usually wants to look up facts during any free time? Any time a teen can get their hands on their phone it’s straight to Snapchat, Instagram, Facebook, and even more to it. Teens should be spending quality time with friends and thinking about school whenever they can. Normal and real friends aren’t those thousands of friends you gain from Facebook or Snapchat, or how many followers you gain on Instagram. Friends are those who will interact with you in person, legitimately talk with you. Not just seeing what they’re off and doing without you or the problems and issues they have to complain about all over social media. Being consumed into a phone doesn’t help kids become social with other students or help build a relationship with teachers in the classroom.

From the same article of MLive, the principal of a local district high school says “We are really strict on our policy,” Adkins said. “If we had kids using them in the hallways, they would be standing in the hallways (finishing phone conversations) and not moving on to class. … Our kids are not using them appropriately. If you are spending time texting or Facebooking, you are not paying attention in class.” Ms. Adkins makes a solid point that if students loiter in the hallways before class, what makes you believe the students have the desire to arrive to class and ready to learn? It is standard that students arrive to classes five to ten minutes early. A student showing up just at the nick of time for class to start can let educators know how much this student really does take priority in each of their classes.

From the same article, Trustee Chip Schulz holding a similar opinion explains “I just see it as a disruption in the classroom. … What would be the full purpose of allowing a student to use a phone during the passing time and at lunch time? Their friends are already at school,” Schulz said. “Who would you call or who would you need to contact that can’t wait?” (Schulz 2017). Of course he doesn’t mean in a crisis situation or an emergency a student wouldn’t need a phone. Students keeping in focus of school and friends is what is most important. In between classes students can take the opportunity to review notes from the last class, be on top of schedules for academics and social events, catch up with friends, numerous things.

Other faculty and principals of schools shouldn’t feel guilty about strictness of phone utilization during school hours. The article Digital distraction in class is on the rise, study says informs that “Students check their phones and other digital devices in class more than 11 times a day on average, according to the survey of 675 students in 26 states. The study was published online today in the Journal of Media Education” (Reed 2017). That is a high rate for each day on average. Students can wait to check their cell phone outside of class. There is no telling the number should decrease in order to save teens education and life outside of a device.

Other individuals may say that having devices in the classroom provides a unique learning experience for all students. The game Kahoot is described by Kahoot! Journal as “A collection of questions on specific topics. Created by teachers, students, business-people and social users, they are asked in real-time, to an unlimited number of “players”, creating a social, fun and game-like learning environment” (Kahoot! Journal 2017). Kahoot has become a widespread learning technique used among classrooms. The Kahoot! Journal explains how it is a fun and engaging learning environment for everyone, I have personally had a different experience. While playing Kahoot, most students pick inappropriate user names on the score board, which the teachers have not favored and would delete the username almost immediately. Afterwards through the entire game, students just attempt to pick the right answer as soon as the question and time has started just to get to the top of the scoreboard without fully analyzing the question. I don’t find this method of technology to be fully beneficial for student’s learning in the classroom. Students prefer to screw around with the privilege of technology, rather than making a full use of it.

Teens need to step into the real world for a moment. Although educators may seem like they’re nagging you to turn off the devices, all they want is what’s best for your education. What we tend to do is occupy ourselves in a phone when you can really think about your education being on the line. Don’t all students want to do better in school? It starts once the phone is put down, not just during class, but both entering and exiting. Take a look around, and it can be seen how many people are out of touch with reality.

Works Cited

Getkahoot n.a. “What Is a Kahoot?” Kahoot! Journal, N.p., 21 Aug. 2013, blog.getkahoot.com/post/58906886260/what-is-a-kahoot

Reed, Leslie. “Digital Distraction in Class Is on the Rise, Study Says.” Phys.org — News and Articles on Science and Technology, N.p., 10 Oct. 2017, phys.org/news/2016–01-digital-distraction-class.html

sschuch@mlive.com, Sarah Schuch |. “Cell Phone Use in Schools on the Rise: Several Districts in Genesee County Allow Students to Text, Call in between Classes, during Lunch.” MLive.com, N.p., 10 Sept. 2011, www.mlive.com/news/flint/index.ssf/2011/09/cell_phone_use_in_schools_on_t.html