March 26th, 2008

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01:36 am - on teens and technology...

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on teens and technology... - graffiti.maverick — LiveJournal

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[User Picture]From: marmal8 Date: March 26th, 2008 - 04:27 pm (Link)
I had a policy of "if I can't see it or hear it, how do I know you have it?" that my kids understood very well. If it causes a distraction, then it is a problem. Confiscating property is not stealing because a parent can come up anytime to retrieve it. In practice we often gave items back to the kid at the end of the day if they didn't make a fuss.

Cell phone reception is often pretty lousy in old school buildings anyway. Obviously they should be off during class and the teacher should be able to say hi to your mom if the phone is on and she happens to call during my class (no really, that happened!). Phones are sometimes used to text during class and that should not be allowed either.

That said, they are useful for finding your kid and coordinating things and being safe. In my day we used pay phones, but hardly any of those work anymore. In a disaster like 9/11, the cell phone network is jammed and so it's irrelevant about getting ahold of your kid. For most things that parents think are important, leaving a message on the cell phone should suffice. Leaving a message at the front office of the school is also a good idea because kids can't legally leave school without telling the office.

There is value in learning to get along with people, and face to face communication is still necessary - like being polite to your teacher, convenience store clerk, and the fuzz. It is not an either-or proposition, this learning to communicate in different media.

[User Picture]From: chrismaverick Date: March 27th, 2008 - 05:49 pm (Link)
I call bullshit on the confiscating property thing. If you're hanging out at my house and I hear your cell ringing in your purse and I take it and say "you can have it back whenever your mom comes to get it." that's stealing and you'd be pissed. The fact that you're an adult and not a teen has no relevance. The fact that we're not in school has no relevance. I've taken something that belongs to you in defiance of your permission. It's wrong.

As Mike's article points out, the problem is we as people don't always recognize changing cultura trends Schools are more guilty of this than anyone. When I was in jr. high, they had us memorizing SIN and COS tables because "you won't always have a calculator available when you need to do this." I said "sure I will." Big argument. History has proven me correct. Not only do I very very very infrequently care what the SIN of an angle is at all, in 2008, the likelihood that I am more than 15 feet away from a non-calculating device at any time of any given day is effectively nil. In actuality, what should have been important is learning how those things worked. Learning why. The actual lesson plan, however, was a vestige of a much earlier time.
[User Picture]From: marmal8 Date: March 27th, 2008 - 11:11 pm (Link)
And I call bullshit on your argument that age and location have no relevance. Children are not adults. If they are making a choice that is disruptive to the learning process, a consequence needs to be applied. If they are not disrupting the learning process then I really don't care if they have a cell phone or not. I've certainly never gone into or would ever go into someone's backpack, purse, pocket or other conveyance to take their property. Why would I need to? Cell phones that are away and quiet are not a disruption.

Moreover, parents have given their permission for us to take cell phones, laser pointers, PSPs and do-rags away. It's called school policy. They don't like it, they can take their kids elsewhere or elect a mayor who appoints a schools chancellor who makes a different policy. People should perhaps read the the school policies before signing the sheet that says they've read them and agree to them. Go and argue about it before signing and agreeing, and before your kid gets caught.

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