I know it's time. Kids need to be using tools that they will be using in jobs and they need to teach me, but when is a good time to get them out. Personal technology: iPads, readers, it touches, even phones. This year our district has made it policy to let students bring their own devices, when it is appropriate. I'm so excited and worried at the same time. Today in class, students asked if they could use their phones to take pictures of their group whiteboard notes...yesterday, we were discussing incomplete dominance and a student asked if they could look up picture examples...next week as we begin our first quarter research project, nearly every student will have a device to use. We are pushing forward using technology in endless ways to modernize learning, notes, and group work. I couldn't be more excited for them and for me to learn from their ideas.
Then yesterday it happened. What I feared most when it comes to this BYOT policy: texting. Our school provides 20 minutes daily for SSR. Some, even in my highly motivated room, don't like to read. So, they were sending messages. Rather innocently during another period, they confessed. I'm not sure they realized it was a confession, but what to do? I had to nip it in the bud. Today I shamed them. I told them how trust works with adults and how broken trust is difficult to repair. I told them that this behavior jeopardizes everyone's chances of having technology at school. I told them how disappointed and ashamed and heartbroken I was. But I know with 8th graders, this will only buy me some time.
Anyone have this policy in place? If so, what are the consequences of not abiding by the rules? Shaming them worked this time, but if they do it again, I'll need to be as creative with the consequences as they are with the educational uses.
Valentine’s Day Upper Elementary Style!
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