Schools Using Smartphones: Once upon a time, I thought it was a terrible distraction to allow students to have phones in the classroom. I used to have to take them away from students. I even remember when I used to confiscate pagers from students. Do you remember what a pager was? But now with the Internet connected smartphone, I think there are a lot more reasons for schools using smartphones than there are to outlaw them.
Smartphones now are mini computers that are constantly connected to the Internet. That gives them super possibilities for use a learning tools.
The schools using smartphones listed below are but a few of the many schools now looking at the smartphone as an aid to student learning rather than a distraction.
Onslow County Schools - Schools using smartphones to teach math
Onslow County high school students participating in the mobile learning program, Project K-Nect, are excelling in math classes, feel more prepared to learn math and are more interested in pursuing math education and careers, according to the latest program evaluation by Project Tomorrow®.
We recognize that mobile devices today play a significant role in our students lives. We want to provide our students a tool that allows them to continue to explore, collaborate, and to develop the skills that are necessary to succeed beyond the classroom.
Watkins Glen School District is taking part in program this fall called Learning on the Go, that puts netbooks, smartphones, and mini-netbooks into the hands of students. The program has been used at the school for two years now, but has only now just expanded to include the use of netbooks and all grade levels at the school. With 40% of the student body not having internet access at home, educators hope that the mobile devices will help to better prepare students for the challenges of an increasingly globalized and digital world, allowing students to gain familiarity with using the web for a wide range of educational tasks.
St. Mary's City School - Schools slowly add phones, PDAs to curriculum
Smartphones now have hundreds of applications meant to educate kids — from graphic calculators to animation programs that teach spelling and phonics. And while most public schools don't allow the devices because they're considered distractions — and sometimes portable cheating tools — some school districts have started to put the technology to use. In St. Mary's, Ohio, a school district of 2,300 students is continuing a pilot program where third-, fourth- and fifth-graders are assigned PDAs, or personal digital assistants, for use as a learning tool in the classroom, and at home. The key, educators say, is controlling the environment in which they are used.
Edmonton School - Edmonton Schools Encouraging Smartphones in Classrooms
Cell phones, smart phones, androids - regardless of what you call them, the fact that they're all around us is undeniable. But do they belong in the classroom? Most schools across North America don't think so, and currently ban cell phone use in classrooms. However, Edmonton's Sister Annata Brockman school is taking a different approach. The school is not only allowing them, but actually encouraging students to use everything from iPhones to iPads and Blackberries during class time.
Crosby Ironton High School - Can Smartphones by used in class for learning?
In most classes, students have to put their smartphones away while in class. Not students in Bob Kuschel's science classes at the Crosby-Ironton High School. Kuschel has allowed students to use their smartphones in class for the past three years. He finds them to be an effective tool in the students' studies. Kuschel said students can't use their smartphones during a lecture, but they can use them for class assignments and lab experiments. For instance, he's had students use their smartphones to take videos of their lab experiments. This gives students the opportunity to review their experiment and then find ways to make their experiment better.
Project K-Nect is a pilot education program using Smartphones with advanced mobile broadband technologies to deliver educational material to 9th grade students in Onslow, Durham and Winston-Salem/Forsyth Counties to improve math proficiency levels in the state. "We cannot expect students to prepare for life in the 21st century unless we provide them with the tools, skills and knowledge they need," said State Superintendent Atkinson. "Qualcomm's sponsorship of Project K-Nect brings new opportunities to students in our state and harnesses a common, state-of-the-art communications tool - Smartphones - to capture students' interest and to give them extra opportunities for learning mathematics.
Mounds View High School - Smartphones, Tablets making way into Twin Cities Classrooms
Students at this Twin Cities school got a chance to bring some of their favorite technologies into the classroom this fall. The school is allowing students to use personal electronic devices in the classroom, including smartphones, PDAs, and tablet computers. While the school acknowledges the potential drawbacks of allowing tech in the classroom, they think the educational opportunities outweigh the risks. They may be setting a model for schools in the region, as the Minneapolis School District just approved a similar measure for bringing tech into the classroom.
Lincoln Middle School - Smartphones join classroom instruction at Lincoln Middle School.
Most students receive a firm reprimand from teachers when even a glimpse of a cell phone is spotted from across the classroom. But that’s all changing at Lincoln Middle School where a group of three sixth-grade teachers are demonstrating how smartphones are changing the education dynamic in their classrooms.
Byron High School - Allows Smartphones in Classroom
Students at this high school no longer have to hide their phones to use them in class. The school is now allowing phones, laptops, MP3 players, and iPads in the classroom, provided students have the OK of their teachers to use them. Over the five months the program has been in place, the school hasn’t seen in increase in students cheating or misusing the technology, perhaps because students are afraid of losing their right to use the tech in the classroom. As of this fall, the program expanded to include the entire school, a change which the school hopes will help not only students but their bottom line as well. Students who are able to bring their own technology to school can help reduce the costs of maintaining a computer lab on campus, and making it easier for students to take notes and look up information is a great added benefit.
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