A study of more than 4,500 kids of 8 to 11 years old shows an increase in screen time for entertainment negatively affects students’ cognitive development. The research shows that children spending more time on screen resulted in less sleep and exercise.
Having more than a decade of teaching experience at Title I high school, the effect of excessive screen time has a much more significant impact on at-risk students. Studies show that high-risk students often lack the financial and basic needs at home. More importantly, they lack social and academic support at home. Worst, many guardians of these often rely on entertainment from mobile devices as a form of parenting. Their parents/guardians feel guilty for not providing their children enough time. Ironically, their love for their children hurt their children academically and socially.
Unfortunately, students’ bad habits and addiction do not stop at home. These students don’t get enough sleep or exercise, and it affects students’ overall moods in schools and classes. They get angry and give up easily.
Despite the negative effect of excessive screen time, many schools fail to implement effective and practical solutions to reduce screen time in classrooms. Because of possible legal liabilities and theft, administrators and teachers could not implement and enforce any effective cell phone policies and guidelines.
As current teachers, we need to think outside of the box to solve the addiction to cell phones in today’s classrooms. That is, stopping students from using cellphones in class is only one aspect of the problem. The most crucial element is using cell phones as a priceless reward system to motivate all students, especially at-risk students.
We co-founded Win Elements LLC to provide Safe Pouch and StreamlineED PD to provide a comprehensive and sustainable solution to create a phone-free learning environment and motivate students, especially high-risk students.