“Stop letting your phone control you.”

How I feel today. This could change. Lol.

Today I told my students my new phone policy and explained why the policy will exist in my room.

I’m done fighting them. I’m not saying another word about the phones. I’m going to keep a notebook by my desk or with me while I’m walking around the room, and if they have a phone out while I’m talking or while they’re supposed to be working, I’m calling their parents AND I will not answer their questions until tutorial time before or after school. I will not reteach a student during classtime who needs that reteaching because they can’t turn off social media drama, Netflix, the latest game.

I use phones in my class for instruction. I start class with an overview of what we’re doing for the day, and if phones aren’t necessary, I say put them away. Inevitably I have to warn multiple kids to get off their phones anyway. Often constantly. 

This is NOT a new problem. It’s been an issue for years, and every time it’s an issue students explain they can do multiple things at once…and then they ask multiple questions about instructions I’ve already given. They also take up time from kids who were paying attention and need help.

Like I said, this is not a new problem, and it’s not a problem for kids alone. Everywhere I go I see people of all ages on their phone screens when they should be working, driving, visiting with friends and loved ones at dinner, watching a movie, the list goes on and on.

I love my phone, but in this digital age, we’ve become slaves to our technology.

And THAT is why I’m changing my policy.

Because

Our phones aren’t going anywhere. We have to learn to be smart consumers in control of our time. We have to learn how to have our phones near without giving in to the urge to text with our friends, respond to social media drama or post a snap chat story. 

We have to learn to police our own time. 

Tomorrow I might have twelve kids failing because they stay on their phones despite the fact that they have assignments due and despite my assurance that I will be calling their parents. And that might make me completely change my mind about this. But today, this is my answer.

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