Mosquitoes at School

This year, for the first time, I saw that cell phones were a problem in school. Technically, they are not allowed, but the administration turns a blind eye as long as the student keeps the phone put away.

Problem is that they don't. Keep the phones put away, that is. The kids get belligerent when you ask them for their phones, too. Now, I can see that parents want to keep in touch with their teens but, theoretically at least, once the kid gets to school he's safe. For the time being. And the parent can leave voice mail messages if the cell is off, or even call the office if there is an emergency.

Nevertheless, the kids persist in using their cell phones to text message each other during class. Then, of course, they have to react to the messages they have received. The texting gets to be VERY distracting, and now there is a new way for the kids to do it on the sly.

According to this article, there's a new ring tone that kids can use without adults hearing it. The tone was developed by a Welsh security company to get rid of loitering kids without bothering the adults around them. The company named their product "The Mosquito."

Donna Lewis, a teacher in Manhattan, says her colleague played the ring for a classroom of first-graders — and all of them could hear it, while the adults couldn't hear anything.

Most of the teachers with whom I work are baby boomers or close, and pretty much all of us have age-related hearing loss, so I imagine that, once the news spreads, we will need to be on the lookout for the phones. If we can't hear them, at least we can still SEE them!

I once got credit for a college class just because I had the "teacher look" down pat. If you do "the look" right, it can keep a whole class under control.

But I don't know if it works for cell phones.


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June 2006
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