Why Students Should Ditch The Phone During Class

A student writes while also scrolling on their phone. Phones can easily become a distraction for students during class time.

In the age of the coronavirus, classes have changed like never before. And while students can still succeed, they might run into challenges, as even teachers struggle to adapt to the new expectations and technology associated with online learning. Because of this, it’s more important than ever for students to focus, so that they don’t fall behind. This is why we believe that students should ditch the phone during class.

Schools Had Already Begun Limiting Phones Before Lockdown

In July of 2019, California passed a law giving both public and charter schools the ability to prohibit phone use in the classroom. And they’re not the only state, or even part of the only country. From Michigan to Washington to France to England, it is becoming more and more common for schools to ban phones. 

Today, as schools largely transition to online learning, phones should not be present either. Although students are now more dependent on technology, that doesn’t mean they should be getting distracted by looking at their phones. Students should be encouraged to put aside their phones during class time, as that would most likely be expected of them if they were attending school in-person. 

Phones are a Distraction and Affect Cognitive Skills

Students look over their school-work. Phones can affect cognitive capacity in students, making it harder for them to focus and learn during class.

A study done by the London School of Economics found that banning phones had the effect of increasing test scores by more than 6%. In addition, without phones, students often feel more present in class. Even just having the phone sitting beside them can cause a distraction, and hinder engagement. Research has shown that humans can’t really multitask, and that without phones, students can succeed more at deep learning — where students don’t just memorize the material but truly learn it. 

The University of Chicago has found that even if phones are turned off or turned face down, their presence still reduces cognitive capacity in people. Ditching the phone may be a way for students to accomplish more, and feel better about the work they have done. It can also serve as a way for struggling students to get ahead.

Ditching the Phone Now, for a More Successful Future

Students can’t avoid their phones entirely. Technology is growing more advanced and becoming more set into our daily routines. In the midst of COVID-19, the reliance on technology is expanding even more. But that doesn’t mean students need to look at their phone during class, or even have it laying beside them. Many parents have opted to hire learning pod facilitators to ensure that phones really do stay away during remote class time. The school day has never been more precious as it is now, and it’s important that students stay engaged and on top of their work. While there may be challenges transitioning to online learning, ditching the phone now can help students succeed in the future.