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Teachers Sound Off on Dealing With Texting in Class

Teachers Sound Off on Dealing with Texting in Class

Following the video that went viral and sparked outrage last week of a school resource officer violently handing a high school student who refused to get off her cell phone, the Los Angeles Times asked educators from across the country to write them about how they handle texting in their classrooms.

The Times highlighted eleven educators who each have their own methods of dealing with mobile phone policy in the classroom.

Angel Suing, an English as a foreign language teacher in Ecuador, says one of the ways she handles cell phone usage is by setting example through not using her phone in class.

“It is just a matter of equal rights and obligations.... Lead by example and the students will follow,” she said, according to the article.

Other teachers told the Times that they take more active methods in ensuring texting during instruction doesn’t happen.

Jeffry Hancock, high school U.S. History Teacher in Georgia, said if he catches a student on his or her phone in class, he’ll take the phone and "punch passcode numbers until the phone is locked. I immediately give the phone back to the student without resorting to desperate measures such as administrators or paperwork. I know I'll have my students' undivided attention for at least the next hour!”

George Summerhill, a middle school science teacher in Nevada, said he has taken the “if you can’t beat them, join them” approach. He lets his students use their phones in his classroom because he accepts they’ll have them anyways.

“It's a sad reality that kids are going to have their phones with them and on in the classroom, but it is a reality we better get used to,” he said, according to the article.

Rebecca Joseph, associate professor at California State University, isn’t as accepting as Summerhill. She has re-purposed a hanging shoe rack as a holder for cell phones. "Students put their phones in the rack and take a number from the slot. They get their phone back at the end of class,” she said.

Read the full list of teacher responses here.

Education World would like to know: How do you handle cell phones in class? Answer our poll below.

Article by Nicole Gorman, Education World Contributor

11/04/2015

Teachers: How do you handle cell phone use in class?

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