Remember when you were in school and kids either sat around and talked in between class or played hacky sack?
Now kids barely even notice the person next to them because their noses are buried in a book. Just kidding! They are buried in a cell phone.
Since when was it okay for kids to be using their phones during academic hours? And should this be a continuing trend?
The technological age has hit the younger generations hard. While we all have introduced more technology into our everyday lives, kids have replaced vital developmental tasks with it.
Social interaction should be done face-to-face, not on social media platforms. Without human interaction you miss out on useful common sense communication tools like body language and tone.
I think we have all experienced this when receiving a text that we had to consult three friends about because the tone or intention was not clear.
Also, experts agree that children who are exposed to too much screen time have developmental delays and behavior issues.
Time Magazine reports that too much time on a tv, computer, or tablet “can have negative effects on their development, including issues with memory, attention and language skills.”
These are not aspects we want introduced into the school day, where the exact opposite is supposed to be happening.
Liz Curtis Faria has been a counselor at three different high schools, and she strongly believes that “cell phones have no place in school with our kids,” reports Scary Mommy.
This does not mean that a child should not be able to keep a cell phone in their backpack in case of emergencies, but it should not be allowed to be used recreationally during academic hours.
There are some key reasons Faria feels cell phones should not be classroom commonplace.
The first being that “kids need a break mentally and emotionally from the 24/7 access to the drama inherent in living a life online.”
Kids wake up watching cartoons at breakfast or checking their social media, and then go to school where they spend time glued to a phone when they should be focusing on their education.
And it doesn’t end there.
After school they will play video games, watch tv, or play on their personal tablets until they’re told otherwise.
When kids are given the choice to watch a stimulating screen or to play outside with their friends, they will likely pick the mindless entertainment.
Children have parents and trusted adults in their life for a reason. They thrive with healthy boundaries and loving instruction.
Faria reminds us that cell phone use in school doesn’t have to be a mainstay. She worked at one high school where cell phone use during school hours was prohibited.
The students complied without incident! If they were caught on the cell phone an administrator confiscated it until the end of the day, and no student wanted that.
Kids these days are becoming less equipped to handle simple tasks like putting in a load of laundry or problem solving when conflict arises, while becoming increasingly anxious, depressed, and lacking common sense.
Being tethered to a phone is not doing our children any favors.
Laying down guidelines on appropriate phone use and encouraging them to engage in productive and enriching activities will help our children to excel in life.
Unfortunately, this may mean that we have to check our own cell phone use.
If our kids see us checking facebook every five minutes or playing one of the thousand addicting online games every chance we get, then they will likely follow suit.
Our lives can only benefit from limiting screens to take in the invaluable inter-personal experiences around us.
(h/t Mommy Underground)