School districts have spent millions of dollars to bring technology into classrooms, so that the students will be introduced to more and more technology, with the hope that these devices will be a way to increase student learning. Technology is getting better day by day, and more and more schools are introducing new ways of learning to their students. Some people may argue that technology in classrooms is a distraction to students, and may get in the way of learning, but is that really true?

Technology is everywhere, but does it belong in classrooms? Access to the internet gives students more ways to study and learn things through websites and even games, but those devices could be causing distractions. The Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development did a study in 2015 with 15 year-olds across different nations. They found that the students who used computers and other devices the most had the lowest math and reading scores. “Those that used the internet everyday do the worst,” says OECD director for Education and Skills. Another problem is the allowance of phones in classrooms and schools. Majority of students have their phone on them during school, and are using them during classes. A study at Harvard University states that 92% of students use their phones and send texts during class. Devices like cell phones, computers and Ipads, are what leads to lower grades, due to being distracted during classes. These devices being allowed in classrooms are causing students to be distracted, leading to lower grades. Students who have access to their phones during class are using them to not do their school work, but instead playing games or scroll through social media. 

Another situation caused by the increase of technology would be the fact that not every family can afford technology in their homes. For many class assignments and projects, students need to have access to the internet and computers to be able to complete them. According to NCES, in 2017, about 28% of families have no access to the internet in their homes, and around 19 million Americans do not have access to service and internet. These students without the internet are shown to be more connected with classmates, and doing better in school. From the New York Times,”Networked devices will not shrink the class divide in education. If anything, it will widen it.”

 Even though technology can be a distraction, devices like Smart Boards, computers, Ipads and other devices in schools can create new ways for students to learn, and widen their range of learning, with access to sites online. For example, Duolingo, letting them learn different languages outside of school online. Sites online can help with learning. There are websites that offer learning opportunities and help students study for their classes.There are many games and practice tests you can find online that may help students. There are some things that may help students online, but there are distractions all over the internet, and who’s keeping them from playing games on the computer instead of doing school work?

One way these problems can be solved is to limit the time students have on their devices. If they need to get something done, and they don’t have a limit, they might start playing games or going on social media. If there is a limit, they will not have enough time to be playing games and finishing their assignments. Another way to help is not allowing phones in the classrooms. If students have their phones on them, they will get easily distracted by them and end up texting or going online. If they are not allowed to have their phone in classes, they can’t get distracted. One more way would be limiting the sites the students are allowed on during school. If they are still allowed the devices, but have limited sites to go on besides school work related websites, they won’t get as distracted and might focus more on their school work. Schools should not completely get rid of technology, but instead limit students freedom online to prevent them from getting distracted by other websites. 

The reason that technology is not fully benefiting schools is students grades are dropping, and they are not putting as much effort into their work as they could. If devices were limited inside of school, then regained outside of school, students reading and math scores could go up. Higher scores and grades would highly benefit the students later on in their lives. 

I think that if technology says the same in classrooms now, this problem is going to get worse and worse. I think this because technology is evolving day by day, even now as we speak. If technology keeps getting better and better, then in the future there will be more and more distractions and students scores will keep decreasing. Students scores are already dropping because of technology as shown in studies, and if technology keeps coming into classrooms to the point where all school work is on Ipads and computers everywhere, students scores will just keep decreasing and students will not be learning as much because of these distractions. A survey shows that about 50% of students get distracted by their devices during class and the students said that 49% of the things they do on these devices were not school related. 

Technology in classrooms is beneficial, while at the same time a distraction to students. Studies have shown that the majority of students use their phones or computers, etc. for off-task things like social media and games. Because of these distractions students scores are dropping. If some rules don’t change in schools about the amount of technology people should be using, their scores may continue to decrease. Schools should try to limit the websites and use of technology during class time to help prevent students from being distracted. Younger students are even using technology in and out of school at such young ages, and studies have shown that kids who use more technology are more distant with classmates. If students who use more technology then other tend to be less involved with classmates, and have lower scores, why would encouraging the use of technology in schools be a good idea?

 

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