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The Daily Bobcat

Cell phones serve a purpose in study halls

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Digital technology is taking over the world around us. It’s been on the rise since it began in the late 1900’s, being constantly reinvented and reimagined each and every day. This kind of advancement should be used to benefit our daily lives; it should be used to help make difficult tasks simpler and to help everyone, especially students. Being a student, I can honestly say that my cell phone has made my entire high school experience manageable and a lot more enjoyable.

I was placed in a study hall for my fourth period class, which I switched out of the on the first day of school solely because the teacher told the class that cell phone usage would be “strictly prohibited for non educational purposes.” I use my cell phone constantly, and while it may seem unnecessary to use it for the common purposes of texting, calling, and social networking, it really is extremely beneficial for students to have that capability.

Twitter, Snapchat, and Instagram, admittedly, are known to be common distractions within the classroom, but in study halls they’re not so much distractions as they are additional options for pastimes. Study halls are meant to be breaks between classes used for homework and study purposes. However, part of studying is taking a break, doing mindless things to allow the information to sink in. Students within the high school setting are usually under the age of eighteen, meaning that their brains are still developing. Developing brains can have trouble focusing and taking copious amounts of information in at once. A newsletter from Oregon State University advised its students to take breaks during studying because “taking breaks to relax, de-stress and clear your head can make your study time more efficient and effective.” The newsletter also mentioned that “breaks in between [study sessions] not only help your brain remember information more effectively, but it can improve your concentration and motivation while you are studying” as well.

I can rely on my device because innovation has allowed me that opportunity. The technological world has grown in such a way that I have a small handheld device that makes handling multiple responsibilities at any given moment possible. It simply would not make sense to take away student’s access to their phones just because they may be “distracted.” It doesn’t make sense to take away their freedom to decide whether they want/can work on something productive. Besides, nothing is less productive than a student who feels overwhelmed or unmotivated.

Some students do, undoubtedly, spend their entire study halls taking part in “distracting” pastimes, but it is their study hall. They should be able to choose to do what they believe will benefit them most in their study hall, even if it their teacher believes it to be a waste of useful time. If a student thinks using the forty-minute period to relax and take a break will help them most in the long run, they should be given the chance to make that decision and accept the consequences.

Even spending their whole study halls doing unproductive things can still act as the study session break between their courses which overall will enhance their focus and allow them to find more motivation to pay attention and truly learn in classes. So why take away these capabilities within students by removing their access to their cell phones? Why choose not to follow the world in the advancements that have been made? Lastly, why purposely hinder a student from working successfully at their own pace?

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The student news site of Bowling Green High School
Cell phones serve a purpose in study halls