A Balancing Act: Online vs. Offline



Our smartphones seem to be attached to us in one way or another. They’re that rectangular bulge in our back pockets, that extra limb extending from our palms. We use our phones to capture a lot of important moments: our kid’s first day on the school bus, a family reunion with four generations lined up together, or summer road trip adventures across the states. But on social media interspersed with photos and videos of these memories are the BLT sandwich your co-worker had for lunch and the beach selfie your best friend posted. National Public Radio’s post Should We Live Life, Or Capture It? discusses our understandable human urge to record and share moments in our lives while encouraging us to live in the moment instead of through the lens.

Being thoughtful in deciding when to use our smartphones and when to be fully engaged eye-to-eye can bring out the best of our online and offline worlds. As great as our smartphones are, their constant presence in our lives isn’t always appropriate. This topic takes on a new set of considerations when placed in the classroom. In many schools, kids are allowed to carry their phones with them throughout the day. Guidelines vary from school to school, and this Safe Search Kids post about Cell Phones In School compares the pros and cons of the situation. As parents, we can teach our kids about how to balance their online and offline time at school and throughout their lives.


In school

Schools seek balance for cellphones in class: Are they a teaching tool or a distraction? 
by The Boston Globe
With policies ranging from BYOD (bring your own device) to restricted use, schools are handling the complex topic of tech in classrooms with varied approaches. This article offers a candid look into how schools in Massachusetts and New York are figuring out the logistics.

17 Pros and Cons of Using iPads in the Classroom
by SecurEdge
With iPads appearing in schools as teaching devices, this list explains some of the realities that we can expect with this new classroom technology.


In social gatherings

Why Snapchat Has Ruined Our Nights Out
by The Odyssey
We think the author of this post says it best, “Capturing the moment is one thing, capturing every single moment for your snap story and therefore experiencing the moment through your phone camera is another.”

‘Pics or it didn’t happen’ – the mantra of the Instagram era
by The Guardian
Teenagers constantly spout the saying “pics or it didn’t happen” when capturing moments with their smartphone, and this article dives into revealing why it’s so important for people to feel recognized and heard on social media.


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