In the last year I have come across a number of articles about students sexting. Sexting is when a person sends a nude picture of themselves to someone else. Students have been arrested for sexting and are facing criminal charges such as child pornography. Besides sexting, according to the Smoking Gun, a student was arrested for texting during class because she refused to stop. She was charged with a crime of disorderly conduct.
While sexting and distracting texting are reasons why schools worry about including cell phones in learning, I believe these two examples are reasons why schools need to include cell phones in learning. The way that students communicate, collaborate, and conduct business (personal or public) over their mobile devices could be both beneficial and detrimental to their futures in the 21st Century workforce. Currently with policies banning cell phones from school campus, teachers get the message that they should ignore cell phones altogether. Which includes talking with students about mobile safety, ethics, and legalese. Students do not understand the ramifications for the media they collect and send on their cell phones. Teachers have an opportunity to help educate students on how to use their cell phones appropriately, for the common good, and for their own upward mobility in the global workforce.
If we continue to focus on the negative, than the U.S. will continue to fall behind other areas of the world that are already using cell phones in learning. Imagine if we only focused on the horrible car accidents and the deaths from those every year in the U.S.? We would ban automobiles. But we also see the common good in cars; for transportation, for the travel industry, for commerce...etc. We even have courses that students are required to take to learn how to drive appropriately and legally. Students need to learn how to navigate their cell phones; appropriately, legally, and for their own futures in this global economy.
Image taken from http://www.flickr.com/photos/ydhsu/3183824689/
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