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Should Cell Phones Be Allowed in School?

By , Nyack, NY

In today's society children are more exposed to technology than ever before. Due to  this new exposure to technology (that is increasing by the day) schools have been left wondering how to handle this dramatic increase of students who have the newest smartphone. Due to the fact that  cell phones have evolved from the luxury that they once were as opposed to now where almost every student has immediate access to cell phones they need be better implemented into everyday school lessons. Regarding this issue, some will feel that cellphones should be allowed in school due to their usefulness in learning tough subjects, while others may say that cellphones are a distraction to students and thus should not be allowed in schools. To tackle this issue schools will need to adapt a modernized way of thinking as we advance further into the future. Cell phones should be allowed in school because they are learning aids, will prepare students for the real world and can teach responsibility.


Cell Phones should be allowed in school because they are very useful learning tools. In the article “Smartphones as Learning Tools” the article states that “there are thousands of apps coming out of smartphone markets for educational purposes”(Smartphones as Learning Tools). This quote shows that there are many apps available on cell phones that can help you with studying or helping you with assignments.Websites and apps that can be very useful to students are but not limited to Quizlet and the various Google apps. These websites are proven to be valid options in terms of helping students and are easily accessible. Another article from Kwikboost states that “Many phone apps offer visual representations of difficult to grasp subjects” (7 reasons why cell phones should be allowed at school). This quote further reinforces that cell phones are useful learning aids because there are many outlets available on cellphones to help with difficult subjects. The internet also contains more updated information regarding topics such as science and social studies whereas school textbooks are mostly outdated especially in poorer areas. Textbooks are quickly becoming obsolete and schools will be able to use funding elsewhere if cell phones are allowed in school as a research tool. Cell Phones will also be able to engage students more so than a lesson in front of the class as said in the article “Cell Phones:no more distracting than a window”. The article states that “Educators struggle to capture the eyes and ears of their students”(Suzzane). This quote also shows that in today's day and age educators simply cannot capture the attention of their students. This quote from the article shows that educators need to adapt to the current technology and begin to better implement phones into lessons. It has also been said that a “Teenagers attention span is now eight seconds, one second less than a goldfish”(Thanks social media). With this startling statistic proving teengaers can barely hold their attention on something for more than eight seconds teachers will need to implement cell phones to as learning tools to hold students attention. If used correctly cell phones will be able to entertain students and be able to hold their attention more so than chalk boards and lectures ever could. Cell Phones should be allowed in school because they are very useful learning tools and aids.


While cell phones are very useful studying tools they also benefit students in other ways. Cell phones should be allowed in school because they will teach students how to use cell phones responsibly. In the article “7 Reasons Why Students Should Be Allowed To Use Cell Phones In School” the author states that “Students could do research for their English papers, or download an app that provides extra information about one of the chemical elements in the periodic table”(7 Reasons). The author also states that “Phones and tablets should be used responsibly and for educational purposes”(7 Reasons). Much like the article suggests if cell phones are used properly they can only enhance the learning experience as opposed to being detrimental to it. When students are taught how to responsibly how to use their phones instead of being irresponsible with them they can be the ultimate learning tool. The article also state to combat any potential cheating teachers can” make students put their phones on “airplane mode” or any mode that will not allow them to send/receive any messages or use the internet”(7 Reasons). This quote clearly demonstrates that cheating will not become a problem if teachers handle it correctly. There are many other methods of dealing with cell phones during exams that include but are not limited to making students put their phone in their bag and hand them in to the teacher. The proper usage of cellphones in school can also teach self control which is a very valuable tool in life.The article ”Benefits of Cell Phones for Kids” states that teachers”could also use the cell phone as a tool to teach the child financial responsibility”(Weller). This quote shows that teaching students how to be financially successful is a very important thing to teach kids. College students today are facing a massive amount of debt that even has them “wanting to drop out”(Lobosco). To help prepare students for college teachers and schools need to teach students how to responsibly handle money.    If students can be taught how to be responsible when dealing with their phone then they will be even more equipped to handle real world problems in a responsible manner.


While cell phones are extremely useful learning tools and can teach responsibility perhaps the most important reason for cell phones to be allowed in school is because they will help prepare students for real world jobs.The article “4 Benefits of Having Mobile Technology in The Classroom” states that ”First and foremost your job as an educator is to prepare your students for the future. Well in order to do so you need to incorporate mobile technology in the classroom”(Wainwright). This quote from Wainwright shows that the main purpose of an educator is to prepare their students for their future lives. In order to accomplish this goal in today's day and age teachers will need to teach their students how to use their phones in relations to real world jobs. Due to the fact that many jobs have begun to transition into having a higher focus on technology being able to properly use them will become even more important as their are more advancements made in technology. The article also states that “Working with mobile devices will not only be part of their everyday lives as adults but it will also be a vital part of many career paths”(Wainwright). This quote further reinforces the fact that cell phones will be a vital part of students lives and careers going forward past graduation. If teachers and schools can teach students how to use their phones in practical ways that their future jobs will require then students will be most prepared or the real world. Cell phones need to be allowed in school because they will help prepare students for their future jobs.  


If teachers or schools do not allow phones to be used in school then it is an infringement upon a basic human right not unlike that featured in the novella Anthem and the novel Siddhartha. In the novella Anthem the main character Equality lives in a post apocalyptic society where even the most basic human rights are restricted. In Anthem Equality writes in his journal that “For men are forbidden to take notice of women and women are forbidden to take notice of men”(Rand,38). This quote from Equality shows that the government has limited a basic human right of taking notice of the opposite sex so no men can feel attraction to women and vice versa. This infringement upon a basic human rights is similar to the possible restriction of cell phones in school. If schools restrict cell phone use then that would be a violation on a student's right to use their phone for educational purposes.In Anthem Equality also states “There is no crime punished by death in this world, save this one crime of speaking the unspeakable word”(Rand,49). This quote further shows that society put restrictions on what they you can or cannot say. This is also similar to not allowing students to their phones in class due to the fact there have been restrictions put on what is allowed in society. In Anthem the overarching theme of the novella is to follow an individualistic mindset and be selfish.Due to the fact that Rand believed in a individualist mindset she would also believe in allowing cell phones in class. If Ayn Rand was alive today she too would be an advocate of allowing cell phones in the classroom to enhance your personal learning experience. Similarly the novel Siddhartha also deals with similar ideals as Anthem. In Siddhartha a boy who longed for something more decides to leave his village to wander with a group of free spirited wanderers called Samanas. In Siddhartha Siddhartha states that “he was more himself than ever”(Hesse,41). In this passage Siddhartha is going through an identity crisis and does not know where he fits in. However Siddhartha comes to the revelation that he is more true to himself now more than ever becoming a true individualist. In schools today cell phones need to be used to strengthen students individual learning experience much like Siddhartha went to strengthen his own self. Much like Rand Siddhartha would also agree with being able to use cell phones for educational purposes. In both Anthem and Siddhartha they both raise important issues about restrictions on human rights and individuality which are both very relevant to this topic.     
                                                    
While many feel that cell phones should be used in school others may disagree with the usage of cell phones. Cell phone detractors have argued that cell phones and their usage in school will hinder students ability at  academic success and will promote cheating.However this is simply not true.In the article “7 Reasons Why Cell Phones Should be Allowed in Schools” states many methods for teachers to combat cheating. The article states that “Teachers could combat cheating by making students turn on “airplane mode” or any mode that will allow them not to access the internet”. If a teacher makes their students turn on “airplane mode” on during exams students will not be able to cheat for their internet will be turned off. Airplane mode is only one of various modes that can turn of the internet on a student's phone, effectively making cheating impossible. If handled properly by the teacher students will not be able to cheat. Another argument against cell phones is that they can become a distraction to students. However an article from Boston Globe is able to refute this. In the article titled “Cell Phones in Class: A Teaching Tool or a distraction” states that “The tweeting,texting and snapchatting during class time are an incredible distraction and makes it much more difficult to teach”( teaching tool or distraction). The teacher who wrote this article is making the argument that cell phones are to distracting towards students. However this is simply not true because of various factors. For starters we are now in a digital age where smartphone access and use is at an all time high, because of this it would be completely unrealistic to expect students not to occasionally check their phones. Secondly teachers also have use to cell phones and will also use them in class creating a double standard. If a teacher can use their phone why can't a student check theirs? When the adult in the room is also being irresponsible and constantly checking their phones what kind of message does that send towards the students. Even still all throughout history students have gotten easily distracted at even the littlest things, looking at rain out the window, getting distracted at the smallest noise etc. Looking back at the statistic from earlier teenagers attention spans are at an all time low, even lower than a goldfish's.Would a cell phone really make that much of an impact here? Given that these two main arguments have been proven to be invalid the only reason educators have not implemented cell phones in a more successful manner is due to teachers being stuck in traditional methods of teaching. Teachers much like their students will need to adapt to the current society and implement cell phone in a innovative manner or they will be left behind.
In today's society kids are more exposed to technology than ever before. Due to new technology becoming available daily students, teachers, parents and schools have been left wondering how to handle the dramatic increase of students who own and use cell phones.Schools will need to continue to modernize with society to keep up with the current generation of cell phone users  While many people believe that cell phones are extremely beneficial to students for a multitude of reasons such as being useful studying tools others believe that cell phones hurt students in their academic endeavors because they are distractions. Cell phones should be allowed in school because they are learning aids, will help students prepare for real world environments and can teach responsibility.






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