A few years ago, I swiped a note as it passed from one first grade girl to another. I was curious. What could first grade girls possibly write about in a note?
I opened the note and immediately questioned my ability to teach writing. It said, Nst Nst Nst. What? I called the girls over and asked them to read it. With guilty eyes, they looked at each other, then to me, and in unison started techno rave music singing "nnst nnst nnst." I bit my tongue to hold back the laughter.
Something recently reminded me of the story as my family sat at the dinner table, and I shared. I then asked my teenage stepson if he passed notes, and his response was priceless and made me feel old. "Nobody passes notes anymore. We text." And with the eye roll that preceded his statement, I tried to imagine what texting does to a classroom.
I work with elementary students, and we rarely if ever deal with cellphone drama. Some colleagues tell me notes are found on occassion, but it is an ancient artform. What I hear from my middle and high school friends is that cellphones are the ultimate evil. I've seen videos and TV shows demonstrate speed texting without looking, but I don't believe it is done in class without being obvious. Really?
So I wonder..
- What's your policy on note passing, or is it just texting these days?
- Do you even encounter notes anymore thanks to technology?
- Are phones taken away?
- How often does it occur?
- How does it affect your teaching?
Scarily, I know texting will eventually make it's way to the elementary classroom, so I appreciate the heads up advice.