Lessons For Being Online In Secondary Schools: Phone Usage
The internet has transformed how we communicate and learn, and WiFi has metamorphosed this into a swift and seamless process. Schools nationwide have realised the need for education WiFi. However, with constant connectivity one problem emerges: how can schools extricate students from the seemingly inseparable phone? Many schools have simply banned phones but is this really the best way to deal with our connected culture?
The phone ban
After years of dealing with students more concerned with updating their status than the joy of quadratic equations, schools have had enough. Universally, the use of phones has been restricted in schools. In some schools this is just in class whilst, in others, there is a total ban of phones on the premises. However, in these times of constant connectivity and endless WiFi, are bans really the best way to educate young people about the internet? Is it too radical to embrace their constantly online culture and integrate it into learning?
Learning lessons for life
With excellent WiFi coverage offered by Aerohive, schools can be guaranteed constant connectivity. However, with budgets tight, schools cannot guarantee every student access to the equipment to use this WiFi. Safe in the pocket or school bag of nearly every student is the potential solution to this problem: their phone. Rather than ban these budding educational tools in class, wouldn’t it be better to assimilate them with clear guidelines and expectations?
The inescapable fact is that young people’s social media usage is firmly and inextricably fixed, and their reliance on it will only increase. Therefore, rather than ban something so ingrained in our young people’s world, perhaps it is time for a radical rethink of how we use phones in school.
Phones in class: really?
The thought of phone usage in school may make every educator grimace. However, the distracted student is nothing new. Many of us spent long hours staring out of classroom windows whilst now it’s staring at a phone screen. Expectations need to be established. Making phones part of an active classroom and using their abundant access to information might help guide our young people through the limitless possibilities of our wireless world.