Classroom Cell Phone Policies

Nov 12
cellphone in classroom

Classroom Cell Phone Policies

Cell phones are great classroom tools, but if used improperly, they can cause problems. We’ve put together a list of cell phone usage policies to get most educational benefit and at the same time eliminate distractions!

 

1. Set cell phones on silent

Cell phones can be loud–even if you put them on vibrate–but if you are using a cell phone for academics, there is no reason to set phones on ring OR vibrate. After all, students should be focused on class work, not calls and texts. The best part about this policy: because students must use their phones in class, they are more likely to make sure their phone is on silent before class–that means no more loud, accidental alarms, calls, or text messages.

 

2. Keep cell phones visible

Like any other classroom tools belong on the desk, not under it! Cell phones are certainly no exception. Keeping phones visible makes students usage easier to monitor, ensuring that students do not carry on text message conversations during class.

 

3. Avoid using phones for non-academic reasons
While the first two policies will cut out most non-academic behavior, it may be a good idea to expressly indicate that a student’s cell phone is a learning tool in class.

 

4. Forbid calls during class
Students may be tempted to take calls during class if they can see notifications as they pop up during class. Teach them restraint by asking them to refrain from taking calls during class. For high school classes, consider banning calls out right. If an emergency comes up, parents should call the school instead of their student. For college classes, ask that students step out of class to take urgent calls.

 

5. Make alternate arrangements for students without smartphones

Students need not have a smartphone to access nClass. At the beginning of the semester, make plans with non-smartphone users to access the app via their laptop.

 

6. Teachers collect phones before exams
You could ask all students to hand in their cell phones before the in-class exam.  Because of regular use over, you will know which students carry cell phones and can take control of them before tests.

 

7. Reward the best cell phone usage

When teachers think about cell phones in class, it’s easy to see why teachers might punish students for using them. However, teachers can also give students an incentive to stay focused if they reward the most active participants on nClass. Consider giving an award to students who made best use of their phone (or computer) during class.

What cell phone policies work in your classroom? Let us know in the comments.

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