We are here asking a question that has been asked by parents and teachers constantly over the last decade as mobile phones gained more popularity and Smartphones made their way into the lives of all. Mobile phones were initially only used for telephonic communication and sending short messages using the SMS facility. A camera, FM Radio, Calculator, Calendar and a few games were then added to the mobile phone as additional features. It was always questioned by parents and teachers whether giving children this device would become a distraction for them or would it affect their studies and their schedule. The question became even more common as mobile phones paved the way for Smartphones that offered a plethora of features and functions with the added benefit of the internet and social media. These phones were even more attractive not only for children and teenagers but also for adults. Often the phone would also prove a distraction as children would end up spending more time on the phone instead of their work. Even adults would get distracted by a Smartphone which made opened so many doors and gave access to information from across the world.
In the last two years, as the education systems across the world moved to the online and virtual space, using Smartphones became even more common for everyone. Even students were supposed to use Smartphones as online classes could also be attended using applications and websites on phones. The mobile phone or Smartphone that used to be a matter of concern for the parents of the students then was now a device that was useful for their learning and scoring good marks. Not only phones, but laptops, tablets and personal computers became more important for students as every aspect of their etalk English school or college was now online and using these devices they could stay connected as required.
While these two scenarios, one of the pre-COVID world and one of the world during lockdowns imposed due to the pandemic, we have come to realise that a mobile can or cannot be a distraction depending on its usage. In this article, we will look at how a mobile phone or a Smartphone is useful for students and how it benefits them in online learning. We will also identify the loopholes where this device could turn out to be a distraction for these students.
Online teaching through mobile apps has become very popular in almost all types of educational institutions for students of all age groups. Even a toddler who is in pre-school or kindergarten now uses a Smartphone to be a part of their class and learn. This kid is also more aware of apps and devices when compared to any other aspect of school or learning. The Smartphone is now the platform where teachers and students connect with each other. A mobile teacher app can be used by both students and teachers to make sure that classes continue even during a lockdown. Live classes, online tests and quizzes, e-libraries and e-books for researching and reading, self-study options, digital tools for making notes, virtual whiteboards and blackboards for explaining concepts and so many other features are offered for students and teachers in the online teaching and learning model.
Using a Smartphone to install the apps required for online learning and getting access to websites related to education can prove highly beneficial for students. Not only are they learning more about their subjects and syllabus but also keeping up with the ever-changing and updating technology. After finding the best app for online classes and the best app and websites that will help them in self-study and finding more resources, students can easily make their Smartphones a very powerful device that helps them in scoring better.
Classroom apps, learning apps, e-libraries and every other type of app can be installed on the Smartphone and then the students can learn from anywhere. This type of class makes learning on the go a successful possibility.
The only drawback of using a Smartphone for online classes is that students have access to platforms from across the world and they could easily get distracted during lectures if they end up surfing the internet or scrolling through apps. The teachers and parents must keep a check on the students and encourage them to make the most out of online classes and the opportunity to learn from anywhere at any time.