Banning mobile phones at school ‘moving in the wrong direction’?

Published: January 11, 2016

Using mobile phones and other technology in schools has become a popular topic recently. Some people say that using mobile phones could benefit students, while others agree that restricting or even banning mobile phones in schools might be a good idea.
Controversial opinions surrounding this topic are usually caused by the concerns regarding the negative effects of ‘digital distraction’. It’s clear that most people would support the opinion that mobile phones and other technology can have negative effects on sleep, homework, exercising and studying. However, it is important to accept that technology is part of children’s lives. So instead of restricting or banning it, teachers and parents should look at how children are interacting with the technology and consider different ways of teaching children how to use technology in a healthy way.

It is important to remember that we are living in the digital age, so banning any kind of technology might not be the best way to go. Teachers should consider how mobile phones could be incorporated into the school curriculum to give children the skills they need to thrive in the modern world. Building mobile phones into the school curriculum enables students to learn everything from soft skills, such as learning to use the web effectively, to more specific tools, such as the latest communications and social platforms that are used in the world of work.
Speaking to the Daily Telegraph, Professor Howard-Jones said: “Banning mobile phones and other technology in the classroom is moving in the wrong direction, an academic has said, as he warns children will keep using technology anyway.”
“I share concerns of parents about the effects of leisure technology on sleep and homework and exercise but it’s important that we don’t demonise it completely.”
Several studies have been undertaken in order to find answers whether mobile phones and other technology have a negative effect on the quality of learning. Again, the results of different studies are usually controversial. For instance, some studies prove that banning mobile phones in schools can actually improve grades, while other studies show that using technology allows students to study or to concentrate better which leads to improved results.
“Video games are powerful things for engaging children. Still, computers need to be turned off in the evening because they could be affecting the sleep, but if they are using games to learn that can be a positive thing.”
To conclude on this topic, it can be agreed that if used properly, mobile phones and other technology can help improve different aspects of learning. This means that banning mobile phones in schools, without trying to teach students how to use them in a healthy way, might not be the best solution.