Cyberbaiting teachers: In the media, but is it in the schools?

After reading several news items on cyberbaiting  –  students taunting teachers to the point of outburst and then recording and broadcasting the scenes  — I checked out a few YouTube videos of teachers “losing it.”  Very few of the so-called tirades caught on cell phones struck me as extreme; I found the students who deliberately goaded the teachers far more disconcerting than the angry teachers.

But apparently some teachers are concerned about cyberbaiting.  I am not sure if this is an issue that is getting attention  because it is trendy or because it is actually occurring. As with the recent study that found incidents of sexting by adolescents have been exaggerated, I wonder about the true prevalence of cyberbaiting.

Anybody see this much in real life?

A recent Education Week blog stated:

A new study, which looked at the effects of technology on youth and the impact on parents and teachers, found that one in five teachers has either experienced or known another teacher who has been subjected to cyberbaiting. According to The Norton Online Family Report, cyberbaiting “is when students irritate or ‘bait’ a teacher until the teacher gets so frustrated they yell or have a breakdown. Students are ready for the teacher to crack and film the incident on cell phones so they can later post the footage online, causing further shame or trouble for the teacher or school.”

The report also found that even though 67 percent of teachers believe interacting with students on social networks elevates the risk of cyberbaiting, 34 percent of teachers continue to “friend their students” on social networks. Furthermore, only 51 percent said that their school has guidelines that dictate how teachers and students can communicate with one another through social media.

–From Maureen Downey, for the AJC Get Schooled blog

168 comments Add your comment

Dr. Craig Spinks/ Georgians for Educational Excellence

December 22nd, 2011
4:49 am

Let’s provide every classroom with visual and audio recording equipment useful in monitoring classroom behaviors by teachers and students.

And I don’t want to hear, “We don’t have the money.” Terminate the hordes of educ-RATS and incompetent teachers whose presences contaminate our public school system.

Jordan Kohanim

December 22nd, 2011
5:30 am

Dr. Spinks,

YES PLEASE! It would make access to lesson easier too! If my student is home sick, his parents can sit him in front of the computer while I teach real-time. I would LOVE that.

Erin Weaver

December 22nd, 2011
6:24 am

Great idea, Dr. Spinks, It would be a win-win situation for all involved.

Francis

December 22nd, 2011
6:45 am

Cameras in the classroom, are you guys kidding? That’s the world you want to live in?

MiltonMan

December 22nd, 2011
6:50 am

Maureen, is it cyber or cyper? You keep flip-flopping between the two.

Pretty easy solution: (1) Teachers – do not get into this social media exchange with your students. (2) Schools should ban phones from coming into the classroom. If students bring phones into the classroom, teachers confiscate & have the parents come to school & pick-up phone from principals’s office.

the prof

December 22nd, 2011
6:52 am

Wish teachers could do what I do…..automatic course letter grade deduction for use of any electronic device other than a laptop computer in my courses. Laptops have to be on course material or also, course letter grade deduction. It works and a lot of students really appreciate it.

ignorant

December 22nd, 2011
7:01 am

Students taunt teachers all the time with or with cells phones. You are ignorant and part of the problem of why students behave so badly.

Aquagirl

December 22nd, 2011
7:11 am

Maureen, is it cyber or cyper? You keep flip-flopping between the two.

Friends don’t let friends post blogs at 4 am. :)

AGREED

December 22nd, 2011
7:16 am

Absolutely, cell phones should be left in cars, lockers, or at home. They are a distraction in a place where students should be focused and compliant. Teachers should not have to deal with students who require constant redirection to the detriment of class learning. This is why schools are failing. Most cases its not the teacher. We need to make the situation very inconvenient for parents. Yes, let them come to the principal’s office to pick it up a few times.

Ron

December 22nd, 2011
7:22 am

@MiltonMan 6:50am – Your two suggestions for solving this problem are right on–teachers stay off social media and students no cell phones in the classroom! All these gadgets clearly distract from student achievement and “teacher quality,” which has been the subject of so many recent editorials.

Sorry Mr. Spinks, but your wanting to videotape classroom situations moves this issue into paranoia. After all these years, why do we suddenly need to put Big Brother into the classroom?

Ron

December 22nd, 2011
7:25 am

Also, after reading this, does the Georgia BOE still think it’s a good idea for students to “evaluate” teachers?

Ga Tech Grad teacher

December 22nd, 2011
7:35 am

I am noticing a new trend in my calculus and physics class; students take a picture of the board just before I erase the problem I just wrote. They say by taking the pic, they concentrate on what I say as I work the problem out. I prefer them to write the problem in their notes as I write. But any ernest attempt to learn by them by any means is OK with me. BUT, tell them that if I show up on Utube, learning math will be the least of their problems-I have a shovel and a good lawyer and no one will miss them.! Oh course, I am kidding ….or am I kids?
I gotta say that I never have any trouble with students (I teach in a South Dekalb school- no matter the grade level – because I keep the emphasis on the lesson and I have a sense of humour. Every once in while I have to tell a kid to put his phone away when they are playing with it. then a few times the kid has actually googled a topic I was on. Besides, If they weren’t playing with their phone, it would be comic book (like when I was kid) or something else. It’s my job to be more than interesting than whatever else they could be doing.
I would hate to ban phones in class-what if a parent needs to contact a kid for an emergency Same thing applies to me- if my wife has flat tire, I’d be rescuing her in New York minute. I always wonder when teachers are worrying about and doing stuff like rounding up phones and ipods, who’s teaching?

Jack

December 22nd, 2011
7:46 am

Cell phones have no place in a school room; they are a distraction. It doesn’t take a genius to figure that out.

I_teach

December 22nd, 2011
7:46 am

>>I would hate to ban phones in class-what if a parent needs to contact a kid for an emergency<<

As far as I know? Every single school in existence in our country has a front office complete with telephones and fine folks who man them. When I was in college, there was an emergency-amazing-even back in the dark ages, pre-cell phone-they got the message to me immediately and I made it to the hospital in time.

What did WE do when WE had "emergencies?" Our parents called the school. Do we really need phones ringing during class time? They are supposed to be off, anyway, so what would be the benefit of having them for "emergencies"?

Every single day at our school, we have parents who call for hundreds of reasons…emergency or otherwise. Our staff is excellent at getting the message to the child/teacher.

I am sooo opposed to phones in classrooms. There is NO need. Leave them in lockers; leave them in their cars. They are being used for cheating. Kids ARE texting during class time.

Instead of "rounding up phones," we are teaching-but I wonder–in all those HS and MS classes where kids have their phones out? Whose LISTENING? Who's LEARNING.

Dr. Spinks, with all due respect, I don't want-nor need- a camera in my classroom. I teach a different population of kids. What would seem sarcastic to anyone who doesn't know my kids, me, or our rapport would kind of shake their heads..there's never anything inappropriate, but you if you did not know us, you would think we were an awfully snarky bunch of people in my classroom. (Dark humor abounds).

Ignorance Is Bliss

December 22nd, 2011
7:48 am

GA Tech Grad Teacher, I have to ask do you really think a cell phone is necessary for emergencies? Most of us commenting are at an age where cell phones were almost non-existent when we were children. If our parents had an emergency, they called the school to have us ready for pick-up. I agree with Jack, they have no place in the classroom, in the school, or on school property. At least, not anyone who is not employed there, and even then teachers need to leave them out-of-sight and mind during class hours.

I_teach!!

December 22nd, 2011
7:49 am

>>I would hate to ban phones in class-what if a parent needs to contact a kid for an emergency<<

As far as I know? Every single school in existence in our country has a front office complete with telephones and fine folks who man them. When I was in college, there was an emergency-amazing-even back in the dark ages, pre-cell phone-they got the message to me immediately and I made it to the hospital in time.

What did WE do when WE had "emergencies?" Our parents called the school. Do we really need phones ringing during class time? They are supposed to be off, anyway, so what would be the benefit of having them for "emergencies"?

Every single day at our school, we have parents who call for hundreds of reasons…emergency or otherwise. Our staff is excellent at getting the message to the child/teacher.

I am sooo opposed to phones in classrooms. There is NO need. Leave them in lockers; leave them in their cars. They are being used for cheating. Kids ARE texting during class time.

Instead of "rounding up phones," we are teaching-but I wonder–in all those HS and MS classes where kids have their phones out? Whose LISTENING? Who's LEARNING.

Dr. Spinks, with all due respect, I don't want-nor need- a camera in my classroom. I teach a different population of kids. What would seem sarcastic to anyone who doesn't know my kids, me, or our rapport would kind of shake their heads..there's never anything inappropriate, but you if you did not know us, you would think we were an awfully snarky bunch of people in my classroom. (Dark humor abounds).

Ron's also correct: some of my students will be filling out surveys using "smiley" faces. Older kids have learned the art of manipulation. I know several kids who have gotten together to try to get a teacher fired. This baiting is VERY manipulative and planned..yet my colleagues are supposed to put 40% of their evaluations in the hands of spiteful kids? Noooo thanks!

long time educator

December 22nd, 2011
7:51 am

Cell phones are banned in public schools, but it does no good. Parents give them to kids anyway and I have had otherwise good parents cite Columbine,etc. Educators are fighting a losing battle. I like the idea of cameras in the classroom. Teachers should already be aware that everything they say and do can come under scrutiny and a camera would protect them to the extent that it would provide the context leading up to an incident. You could stream it live online, but there are probably privacy issues for the students. A parent has the right to see his own child, but does he have the right to watch the other students in the classroom? I think it would be possible to give a parent an access code only for the classes her own child was in. Most importantly, I think it would improve teaching and help with teacher evaluation.

I_teach!!

December 22nd, 2011
7:51 am

GA Tech Grad Teacher…

Your students are TOO LAZY to take notes, so they resort to taking a picture of the problem before it’s erased?

Does this sound right to you??? What organizational skills are they honing? Why is this even permitted? Seriously. Learning how to take notes and use them is, in fact, a skill nearly every job will require.

teacher&mom

December 22nd, 2011
7:52 am

I’ve never experienced cyberbaiting. However, cell phones have created do create another issue in the classroom….cheating.

@GA Tech Grad Teacher…..When I read your comments, my first thought was cheating. Students may be taking a picture of the problem to view during a test. This has happened more than once at my school.

I_teach!!

December 22nd, 2011
7:53 am

Long time..

no,actually they are NOT banned. all schools now have some kind of policy. typically it is that the kids can keep the phones on them, provided they are turned off. When my sons were in HS, it was automatic ISS if your phone was out of your pocket, bag, etc. My son served a day in detention as a senior..he pulled it out to make sure it WAS off and wouldn’t make any noise prior to class starting. Teacher saw it, and wham.

I tried to post this bottom comment three times. no go. maybe this time….?

>>>I would hate to ban phones in class-what if a parent needs to contact a kid for an emergency<<

As far as I know? Every single school in existence in our country has a front office complete with telephones and fine folks who man them. When I was in college, there was an emergency-amazing-even back in the dark ages, pre-cell phone-they got the message to me immediately and I made it to the hospital in time.

What did WE do when WE had "emergencies?" Our parents called the school. Do we really need phones ringing during class time? They are supposed to be off, anyway, so what would be the benefit of having them for "emergencies"?

Every single day at our school, we have parents who call for hundreds of reasons…emergency or otherwise. Our staff is excellent at getting the message to the child/teacher.

I am sooo opposed to phones in classrooms. There is NO need. Leave them in lockers; leave them in their cars. They are being used for cheating. Kids ARE texting during class time.

Instead of "rounding up phones," we are teaching-but I wonder–in all those HS and MS classes where kids have their phones out? Whose LISTENING? Who's LEARNING.

Dr. Spinks, with all due respect, I don't want-nor need- a camera in my classroom. I teach a different population of kids. What would seem sarcastic to anyone who doesn't know my kids, me, or our rapport would kind of shake their heads..there's never anything inappropriate, but you if you did not know us, you would think we were an awfully snarky bunch of people in my classroom. (Dark humor abounds).

Ron's also correct: some of my students will be filling out surveys using "smiley" faces. Older kids have learned the art of manipulation. I know several kids who have gotten together to try to get a teacher fired. This baiting is VERY manipulative and planned..yet my colleagues are supposed to put 40% of their evaluations in the hands of spiteful kids? Noooo thanks!

I_teach!!

December 22nd, 2011
7:55 am

>>I would hate to ban phones in class-what if a parent needs to contact a kid for an emergency<<

As far as I know? Every single school in existence in our country has a front office complete with telephones and fine folks who man them. When I was in college, there was an emergency-amazing-even back in the dark ages, pre-cell phone-they got the message to me immediately and I made it to the hospital in time.

What did WE do when WE had "emergencies?" Our parents called the school. Do we really need phones ringing during class time? They are supposed to be off, anyway, so what would be the benefit of having them for "emergencies"?

Every single day at our school, we have parents who call for hundreds of reasons…emergency or otherwise. Our staff is excellent at getting the message to the child/teacher.

I am sooo opposed to phones in classrooms. There is NO need. Leave them in lockers; leave them in their cars. They are being used for cheating. Kids ARE texting during class time.

Instead of "rounding up phones," we are teaching-but I wonder–in all those HS and MS classes where kids have their phones out? Whose LISTENING? Who's LEARNING.

Dr. Spinks, with all due respect, I don't want-nor need- a camera in my classroom. I teach a different population of kids. What would seem sarcastic to anyone who doesn't know my kids, me, or our rapport would kind of shake their heads..there's never anything inappropriate, but you if you did not know us, you would think we were an awfully snarky bunch of people in my classroom. (Dark humor abounds).

I_teach!!

December 22nd, 2011
7:56 am

i give up. i tried to post two replies. lost in the ethos…

If anyone sees them out there, feel free to yank them back down to the blog. thanks!

HS Public Teacher

December 22nd, 2011
8:02 am

Kids will be kids.

What is a shame is how adults respond to these kids. Rather than address the problem (the kids videoing and baiting), the administration and even society attacks the teacher.

Cosby

December 22nd, 2011
8:02 am

Once again, a non family environment promoted by the government takes any parent out of the picture and this is the result. Perhaps if we stop paying for baby’s regardless of who the father is, and held parents accountable for their little darlings, then we would not even be having this discussion. that and rid the USA of the Teachers union!!

SBinF

December 22nd, 2011
8:02 am

What a world!

Teachers are only human, but I don’t see any reality where a student would bait me into losing my cool.

This is no different than life. There are simply unpleasant people who behave in a way SO that you will lose your cool. I can think of a number of passive-aggressive folks I’ve been forced to interact with…same concept.

I_teach!!

December 22nd, 2011
8:05 am

Cosby,
Our school is VERY much a ‘family environment.” Your simplistic comments are knee jerk responses that don’t offer much in the way of solutions, just more criticism.

For the record, GA doesn’t HAVE a ‘union.’ If it did, all teachers would have a ‘duty free lunch,’ something that right now? Only elementary teachers have.

Also, why the throw away comment about “baby’s” [sic-it’s ‘babies;’ baby’s means belonging to one baby. babies-plural more than one)…that has NOTHING to do with the topic?

Martina

December 22nd, 2011
8:07 am

Our system has actually started encouraging students to bring Iphones, Ipads, etc. to school. They call it BYOT (Bring Your Own Technology). I call it a recipe for disaster! A couple of our schools, even elementary, are piloting the program. I just heard from my aunt at middle school yesterday that a girl had left the classroom at dismissal and left hers lying on the desk and of course it was gone later. Just one more thing to have to deal with – mine get wound up enough when someone takes their pencil! I’ve seen videos of the teacher blow-ups but never heard of it happening to anyone I know.

JonB

December 22nd, 2011
8:09 am

Maureen, Any word from substitute teachers on this issue? It would be good to hear their take on things like this – they do a thankless job, as far as parents and students are concerned, and can be even more easily “set up” in these matters. They often do not have the authority or knowledge of the accepted school rules and policies on e-devices and are at a loss to deal with them during a lesson that may be a stretch for them. Anyone out there who has subbed chime in with your take on this. Thanks.

ABC

December 22nd, 2011
8:09 am

WHY would any teacher become “friends” with their students??? What could you possibly be doing on FB that is of any interest whatsoever to a bunch of surly teenagers??

I would NEVER friend students in FB. I even “hide” myself from young family members. They don’t need to know what Auntie A has been doing over the weekend.

HS Public Teacher

December 22nd, 2011
8:22 am

@ABC – I don’t think many teachers would actually “friend” a student. However, many teachers do not set the most restrictive privacy settings on FB because they do want their real friends, family to find them.

It is the students that seek out the teachers and look at their facebook pictures, posts, etc. Then, the students feel that they have some inside knowledge about their teacher and may try to use it to their advantage.

Before I changed my privacy settings to maximum, a student of mine actually told a parent a lie about my facebook pictures. The parent then went to the administration and demanded that their child be pulled from my class. Understand that the parent never took the time to actually see this ficticious picture of me. So, I was “called to the mat” by the administration. Of course, I was cleared of any wrong doing.

However, NOTHING was ever done to the kid. This kid put me through heck with an outright lie, tried to put my job in jeopardy – heck my career – and yet NOTHING was done to the kid. When I complained about this to the administration, their response was – “but you were cleared so what is the big deal?”

Where is the justice?

Since then, I have changed my FB privacy settings to maximum.

Well it

December 22nd, 2011
8:23 am

Looks like Cosby need to be back in the classroom. Checkmate I_teach!

I Say

December 22nd, 2011
8:26 am

@ABC – a lot of people on FB don’t need to know what Auntie A is doing on the weekend but Auntie A shares it anyway just like a surly teenager.

carlosgvv

December 22nd, 2011
8:29 am

Years ago in school, on a Friday afternoon, the teacher started to talk about what we would do tommorrow. I said “tommorrow’s Saturday”. She looked up and screamed “who said that”? When I raised my hand she proceeded to ream me out in a red-faced tirade that seemed to last for over ten minutes. Even if there had been cell phones then, I doubt it would have done me much good. If I had complained in any way, I would have been expelled. Needless to say, I will never forgive or forget this humilitation.

Ed Lawyer

December 22nd, 2011
8:30 am

Thanks for the post Maureen. It sheds light on the evolving use of technology both inside and outside the classroom and on the importance of development of new policies and best practices regarding use of smart phones and social media. I’ve handled many cases involving educators facing action by their employers or the GA Professional Standards Commission regarding inappropriate use of Facebook. Teachers should NEVER “friend” students on FB. Second, as a previous poster who teaches in S Dekalb described, smartphones can be incorporated into the classroom. My understanding is that the GA legislature may be developing legislation for the upcoming Session that would officially end the ban (often ignored at the local level) on cell phones in the classroom and allow school systems to develop policies integrating that technology.

northatlantateacher

December 22nd, 2011
8:40 am

No, I don’t think “cyberbaiting” (who comes up with these words?) is a real issue. It sounds trendy and nonsensical, like “sexting” a few years ago. Technology in the classroom isn’t going anywhere and I would say the teacher has to just deal with it. Not much different than the notes I used to write…except at least note writing helped me hone some basic writing skills.

Dr NO / Mr Sunshine

December 22nd, 2011
8:48 am

If teachers cant keep a cool head over an intentional taunting then they shouldnt be teaching.

Ga Tech Grad teacher

December 22nd, 2011
8:49 am

The students say that they copy the notes from their phones down later – they say I write too fast. I used to do the same thing for a few quick writing profs at GT: copy the notes quickly in class and recopy them later. I would notice cheating since I read every line/word number/equation they write. . All my students, do what I ask – if it’s to put their phone away or stop doing homework for their other classes (due to demanding literature and history teachers, that’s actually a bigger problem in my class than phones). Once or twice, I have threathened to give them a test on their phone or book or whatever they are distracted by ( I gave this quiz last year after a student kept reading a romance novel in the back of the class: A student is reading the bestselling novel “Calculust and Other Love Stories” during math class. The pages of the book are 8 inches tall and when the book is opened in certain way, the pages form the curve shown below. The height of the curve has the shape given by the equation “h(x) = (8sinx)/x,” a. Find the limit as x approaches 0, b…find the velocity of the page at instant x = 3…the quiz had 10 parts
Usually, gets my point across that they should pay attention in class, allows me make a joke about it and to keep the focus on the math -always. That student, BTW is now studing engineering at GT and stills laughs about it.
Also, before critiquing my class, please note that my AP Calculus class was ranked number 1 in the nation by College Board in their report to the nation. So I guess I got it wrong – back to grading finals.

old dude

December 22nd, 2011
8:55 am

Jeez, Louise! Students have tried to bait teachers into over-reacting for as long as I can remember if the teacher in question seemed susceptible to it. Beanie, Bucky and I tried to crack old Mr. Norcross’ seemingly unflappable facade back ‘61 but to no avail; he just kept smiling and plowed ahead with his lessons. Then, one day, he took us aside and revealed how much he admired our sense of humor (he was being a bit patronizing) and then told us we were trying the same pranks he had tried on his teachers long before “THE WAR”. As he released us from his grip, he strongly suggested we apply our creative energies to our upcoming project. Now, I am the ‘old Mr. …” in the classroom and occasionally a student will try to bait me just to get a reaction. I am not un-flappable. But, like ‘old Mr. Norcross” who had seen extensive combat in WWII, I have been around the block a time or two and been exposed to some terrible stuff and learned to control my ‘flap’ pretty well. I will not confiscate cell phones because school policy forbids it but I will keep it in my coat pocket for safety’s sake if it seems a student might accidentally drop it on the floor by having it out of the bookbag; and, I will let them take a photo of notes on the board or homework at the end of class if they think it will help. I do agree that, in general, parents do a disservice to their children by allowing them to take their phones to school. Now, let us remember what started all these comments: “anyone see this much in real life?” Here is my last contribution to the pot. Sometimes we have a substitute teacher cover a class and the kids just totally overwhelm the ’sub.’ that is a shame. However, talking with an administrator one day, the admin. explained it like this: “the sub comes in here with one concept of what to expect often based on outdated experience and the students present something different. The sub does not know what to do with the unexpected. We (regular faculty) are here all the time. We know what to expect.” My principal is fond of reminding us that, like a dairy farmer, we have to “know our cows” to get the best from them. Expecting the unexpected is part of knowing your cows.

catlady

December 22nd, 2011
9:00 am

I don’t “do” facebook or any of the social media. Not interested in anything but my real friends, whom I see or talk to or email. Not interested in telling or finding out what others had for breakfast, either.

I don’t buy all the “need” crap for phones in the classroom. Or, perhaps a way to jam them during class hours should be developed. We had some 5th graders who had a cell phone and got their jollies calling in emergency police and fire response calls while riding on the bus. Hoo-boy.

I told my younger daughter if she ever had hers confiscated, she would not get it back until she went to college. It never was a problem for her.

Same daughter was threatened via social media. School took care of it–expelled the boy and he went to YDC.

And as to those kids who take pictures of the problems–let them take notes while audio-taping the explanation, if they need it. I can forsee an acceptable use in YOUR classroom devolves into fun and games in another classroom.

THEN we have all the problems with the school being expected to keep up with these eletronic possessions. Don’t have the time.

I like Dr. Spinks’ call for videotaping (for a lot of reasons) but we have to get parental permission for any kind of picture-taking. What are the chances of getting that permission for every kid in the room? I’d love to have it, because perhaps instead of mindless paperwork justifying why I am doing this or that, we could pull out the old tape and I could point out the cause. Also, it could put the cabosh on the parental claim that, “You never went over that in class.” Since teachers are no longer accorded professional treatment, this might help. And, of course, it would also catch the teachers who are asleep at the wheel. I think most teachers would love it.

☺☻

December 22nd, 2011
9:02 am

Your students are TOO LAZY to take notes, so they resort to taking a picture of the problem before it’s erased?

Calm down.

Sometimes teacher don’t keep the notes up long enough for everyone to write them down. A perfectly logical explanation.

I’ll take pictures with my phone of serial numbers, notes I glance at briefly, etc. because it’s much better than none at all.

another comment

December 22nd, 2011
9:18 am

Why not just collect all of the cell phones in a basket as they walk in the door and return them as they exit. Simply solution. Parents know they are using them. The 3,500 texts incoming and the 3,500 outgoing texts I see on my cell phone bill are made mostly during the school day. One day I went to my daughter’s old school, and when was on her way home she was texting me, why I was over their. Friends had texted her about my visit.

My daughter also had gotten bullying texts during cheerleading, from other cheerleaders that mimic parent bulling e-mails, that were sent during the day. So the parents are just as bad. I then sent out an e-mail that I was going to the authorities with any of the texts on the phone on my phones which I paid for, from these girls that were bullying and clear threats. I then got a barage of e-mails from parents, I hope that is not my child, you would tell me if my child sent that first. These dummies do not realize that the owner of the phone and the account can trace every text, e-mail and twitter message sent on the phone. Along with all the face book messages. How do they think the police are making all these gang cases lately, these dumb fools bragging.

Our technology free generations did not have these opportunities to get caught so rapidly.

Ga Tech Grad teacher

December 22nd, 2011
9:21 am

@smiley face:
“Sometimes teacher don’t keep the notes up long enough for everyone to write them down. A perfectly logical explanation.

“I’ll take pictures with my phone of serial numbers, notes I glance at briefly, etc. because it’s much better than none at all.”

Thank you, inspired by my resourceful students, I took a picture of my blood test results at the doctors office office yesterday.

Another Math Teacher

December 22nd, 2011
9:24 am

another comment:

“Why not just collect all of the cell phones in a basket as they walk in the door and return them as they exit. Simply solution. Parents know they are using them. The 3,500 texts incoming and the 3,500 outgoing texts I see on my cell phone bill are made mostly during the school day.”

So, you’re a bad parent and expect the school to do your job. How about you use the restrictions that cell companies offer and shut down text, except to your phone, during the school day? That might slow down the 3500 texts.

Concerned DeKalb Mom

December 22nd, 2011
9:28 am

“another comment” has a great suggestion. I don’t think it’s actually realistic to ban cellphones. Is anyone really going to frisk the kids as they go in and out of a classroom? Kids–and adults–can be pretty stealth when it comes to utiliing banned technology.

Back in the day…I used to collect graphing calculators before math tests and then redistribute so that the kids couldn’t use anything they programmed in. I think more technology in the classroom is an inevitability…teachers will just need to come up with creative ways to combat the dishonesty.

Concerned DeKalb Mom

December 22nd, 2011
9:29 am

…sorry for the typo…”utilizing”

Gwinnnettian

December 22nd, 2011
9:50 am

I had a child “record” me on some little toy device more than 20 years ago. When played back, I actually sounded very professional. Me – 1, kid – 0!

Proud Teacher

December 22nd, 2011
9:51 am

There is no need for a cell phone in a classroom. If a studen’ts parent(s) need to get in touch with the student for emergency reasons, they are still perfectly free to call the school’s office and relay the message. Phones are distracting at best. Technology must not be allowed to take the place of thought. Our students must be challenged to be successful in reading, math, and critical reasoning skills. Texting need not apply in my classroom.

Hey Teacher

December 22nd, 2011
9:58 am

My district “bans” electronic devices during the school day but enforcing that rule is unbelievably difficult. I’ve taken a dozen phones to the administration this year so far — primarily for repeat offenders who refuse to put up their phones when asked, but I don’t have time to deal with every student who appears to be texting under the desk. A cell phone blocker would be awesome.

Experienced teacher

December 22nd, 2011
9:59 am

Has anyone worked in a school where phones were used to organize gang fights? At my former school, we were told to notify the police if the phones came out as it was one way to detect an impending jumping or cross school gang fight.
Now in my current school, texting on the sly is to coordinate meeting up in the hall or in the bathroom or trying to sneak out at lunch. Are parents so naive as to think that their angels need that constant phone present for ‘emergencies’? How about the rampant cheating that goes one with phones?
What kind of a classroom discussion do you think will happen if the cameras are on? Do you have any idea how kids will play that one for the cameras? Have you never spotted kids in the background when news crews are around? Some teenagers NEVER give up the ability to be a ham and be in the spot light. Video taping classes sound like a great idea but this is not like parent day care where toddlers are unaware of the cameras on them. Teenagers are VERY aware of cameras and some act accordingly knowing that their parents thinks they are being ‘cute’ is more important than being a student or being part of a community of learners.

student

December 22nd, 2011
10:05 am

@GA Tech Grad Teacher
I’m a Tech student now. I use the phone picture method all the time, particularly when I work with a group. We discuss the project/assignment out loud with one person writing notes and diagrams on a white board or piece of paper, and then we take a picture of the notes to be emailed out to the whole group. This is much more efficient than everyone taking the time to copy it down.

My thoughts are that these students need to learn how to manage their selves. Once out of high school, no one is going to be monitoring if they are on their phone. If they are in college, they miss the material and fail. If they are at work, they’ll get reprimanded and eventually fired if they aren’t doing their job. It’s life. They will figure it out soon enough.