How cell phones have changed learning for high schoolers


Photo credit: Brandon Miller

By Brandon Miller, Staff Reporter

Cell phones are the subject of a lot of scrutiny when it comes to their effects on highschool students. It’s constantly been stated that cell phones are a distraction and a nuisance that do nothing but harm. However, I would argue that cell phones have done more good than bad when it comes to their effect on high school students. 

Having notifications appear on my phone reminding me of a due date or an upcoming project has definitely saved me from turning in an assignment late more than once. Unlike a computer, I can carry a phone with me everywhere, and if I get a notification I can look at it instantly and work on an assignment that I might have forgotten about, or instantly be informed of a meeting for a club. Information makes communication way easier and that wouldn’t be possible without students having cell phones.

This also works for teachers as it allows them to communicate easier with their students and make sure that all their assignments are being done on time. There’s only so much time for teachers to communicate face-t- face, and with only being in class twice a week in-person, there’s going to be more questions that can’t be answered by teachers. Students can ask their teachers any questions they might have by using apps such as Remind or Basecamp, which is much easier than composing a new email every time they need to ask for clarification or extra help. 

Class interaction is much easier with cell phones. There are only so many Chromebooks at this school, so having everyone with a smart phone allows us to interact with programs like Pear Deck and Kahoot much easier. However, with “bring your own device” now being in place, this may be more of a moot point. It is always good to have a backup plan in case your computer runs out of battery or stops working for some other reason. 

There is still an argument to be made that despite all this good phones are still a distraction and should be left at home or in lockers. Having the willpower to just leave your phone in your pocket or backpack is a simple fix to being on your phone during class. Notifications going off during class is something no one wants to be responsible for, and if it’s for another class you might be tempted to look at it. However this is no excuse to be constantly distracted by your phone during class, and there is definitely a time and place for looking at your phone during school hours, but having the ability to be informed of changes and reminded of current assignments is something that is still very new, and something that needs to be capitalized on. Instant communication between teacher and student is very helpful, and made possible by phones.