Phone and Note Taking

Dear Ms. Smartphone: I teach a class at university extension and have an issue. My students are taking notes during class on their phones or tablets. Honestly, I don’t know whether they are actually taking class notes or browsing the Internet or email. Dale, Boston

Dear Dale: What you pose could be a problem, or not. Smartphones don’t seem compatible for note-taking, but tablets do work. Why not call on your note taking students during class to find out if they are tuned-in and paying attention?
Two professors from UCLA and Princeton did research on the best method for note-taking. That was in 2016 and things change rapidly in the tech world. It doesn’t sound like you want these devices in your classroom. As an instructor you must show students how to learn to learn. There is a new book by Cal Newport called Digital Minimalism. You might recommend it to these particular students. Better yet, if the content fits your curriculum, make this a full classroom discussion.

Dear Smartphone: Homework or Phonework?

DEAR MS SMARTPHONE: MY TWO GIRLS GO BACK TO SCHOOL THIS WEEK. ONE OF THEM IS A FRESHMAN IN HIGH SCHOOL AND THE YOUNGER ONE IS IN EIGHTH GRADE.   I AM WORRIED THAT THEY WILL NOT BE SO ATTENTIVE TO THEIR SCHOOL WORK THIS YEAR BECAUSE THEY SPEND SO MUCH TIME ON THEIR PHONES. THEY GET LOTS OF HOMEWORK. SoCal Mom, Los Angeles

Dear SoCal Mom: Almost every parent thinks about this issue when school begins anew. I recommend two books that help parents achieve a school/media balance. One is called “The Art of Screen Time” by Anya Kamenetz and the other is “Reader:Come Home” by Maryanne Wolf.  I  recommend that you prepare your students to be deep learners by insisting Continue reading “Dear Smartphone: Homework or Phonework?”