Wednesday, March 06, 2013

Cell Phones in the Classroom

Cell phones in the classroom were once thought to be such a problem that some school districts banned them altogether. Now that cell phones have turned into smartphones, school districts might want to reconsider. For many students, particularly those from low-income families, smartphones are the primary means by which they access the Internet. Banning cell phones from the classroom may be doing more harm than good.

There's evidence of this problem in a Pew survey of digital technology use among the nation's Advanced Placement teachers in middle and high school. Many teachers report integrating student cell phone use into their lessons, with 42 percent asking students to use their cell phones in class to look up information. One in five AP teachers complains that school rules restricting student cell phone use are hurting their ability to teach. For those who teach low-income students, an even larger 33 percent say the rules are hurting their teaching--and their students.

Source: Pew Internet and American Life Project, How Teachers Are Using Technology at Home and in Their Classrooms

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