By: Emma Botelho (Correspondent)
Technology is a booming concept for teenagers and every day teens spend countless hours on their devices. Technology is now being incorporated into learning environments.
In 2015, Sharon High School started it’s 1:1 Laptop program. The program allows for students to have a personal laptop to get work done for classes they take. Teachers are also provided laptops to give homework, or teach lessons.
SHS Freshman Abby Gott says that the 1:1 program has been helpful so far. “I think it is a really good resource to have outside of school because a lot of teachers put our homework on laptops,” said Gott.
“I don’t really think it has affected my grades, like if I get distracted it doesn’t affect my grades. Students are able to easily complete homework tasks and study for tests due to laptop access,” Gott added.
81% of teens today use social media, but not everyone has internet access.
SHS school counselor, Ms. Tanya Keeney, says that not everyone can access technology at home. “Some of our students do not have the luxury of internet at home. Some do not have adequate technology to complete work at home, nor do they have a home that is conducive for homework. The laptop provides access for more of our students than many realize,” Keeney said.
Laptop access allows for Guidance counselors to use the Naviance platform that helps with the progression of students, and the ability to prepare for college. “The laptop program has been awesome,” said Keeney.
The laptops have been great for many people at SHS, but some people see the laptops as a distraction. Studies show that on average kids spend 8 hours a day on social media and the internet.
SHS Freshman Shiraz Becker says she can sometimes get distracted by technology outside of school. “I do not get any sleep because I am up all night watching Netflix,” said Becker.
Laptops have caused difficulty for teachers to teach lessons.
SHS English Teacher, Ms. Lori Novick- Carson, says student laptops can be distracting in the classroom. “I notice that when students are working on an assignment on a laptop, they often break their concentration to click on social media, a website, or Spotify. This is when technology becomes a distraction” said Novick-Carson.
Physics Teacher Mr. David Accardi says that he has worked in schools that have used laptops and that have not used laptops. “[There] is definitely a big difference in attention,” Accardi said. He says he notices that students who have technology access during school can become more focused on what is on their laptops, rather than being focused on the lessons being taught.
The program started after the current seniors were freshman, so they never got to experience the 1:1 laptop program.
SHS senior Jared Parker says introduction of technology in recent years has been a difficult transition from pen and paper. “It has been kind of tough for us because as we go through high school all the teachers are transitioning to be more online oriented… before that we always had to use the school carts or do it the old fashioned way on paper which is really tough when the teachers are all trying to switch to an online platform,” said Parker .
“Next year, we can count on all students having a laptop, and we’re happy about that within the context of our work with them,” Keeney concluded.
Technology has become part of our daily lives, and there is no avoiding it as devices continue to advance.