The issue of technology in the classroom

In the past few years, there has been a huge advancement in technology. This technology is being used for education (for example: school issued iPads). Even though the idea of technology is a good idea for helping children learn, it is also creating a distraction for their learning. In St. Paul Public Schools, there are many kids that are distracted by either their iPads or cell phones in the classroom (playing on them instead of doing their school work). This is causing them to not focus and learn, which can result in bad tests scores and low grades. 

One of the issues with school iPads is the App Store which allows kids to download and play games on the device. In the last year, there have been fixes that have taken the App Store off of school iPads. This helped for awhile, until kids figured out how to either get the App Store back or they found other ways to play games. The App Store battle is a constant issue which is continuing to cause kids to be distracted in the classroom.

Another issue is the use of cell phones. Each teacher has different rules about phones but kids still use them to “listen to music while doing work.” There have been studies proving that listening to music is more of a distraction than a help for doing work (for an example see: http://www.spinedu.com/listen-music-studying/).

One more issue with cell phones is that if a student doesn’t have an iPad with them, they say they will just use their phones to do the work. The problem with this is A) the screens of cell phones are small so it is difficult to produce quality work and B) without the school iPad app restriction, the student is able to do anything on their phone even if they say they are doing work.

Since school issued iPads, and personal cell phones, are both an issue in a learning environment, there should be someone who looks into enforcing more efficient rules for the use of these devices in the classroom.

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