Laptop Use Discouraged During Down Time

With students on laptops much of the day, teachers and administrators are discouraging use during breaks like recess and lunch.

Photo By Lily A.

With students on laptops much of the day, teachers and administrators are discouraging use during breaks like recess and lunch.

When the third period bell rings, and everyone’s getting ready for indoor recess, many go straight to their computers. However, some teachers are setting guidelines to keep students off of their computers for recess.

“I prefer not to let my students use their laptops during indoor recess,” explained math teacher Alison Stowe. “They use their laptops all day, and it’s a good time to take a break and relax.”

In fact, if Ms. Stowe had her way, all of her students would head outside to move a little and breathe some fresh air. According to the CDC, going outdoors for recess increases physical activity, improves memory and concentration, and helps students stay on task the rest of the day.

The official FCPS policy, according to Fairfax Now, prohibits teachers from using recess for instructional activities, including homework. The goal is to allow students the chance to see friends that aren’t in any of their classes and a chance to take a break from their computers and clear their minds. Even when recess moves indoors, some students still choose to get off of their computers.

“Normally, during indoor recess, I talk to my friends,” said 7th grader Lillian Zuppert.

Another time students often want to use their laptops is during lunch, but there is a rule against phones or laptops in the cafeteria.

“In accord with the Away for the Day policy, laptops are for academic purposes only and should not be open & in use around food & drink. We also believe it’s a valuable time to collaborate and interact with classmates and take a break from screens,” stated Longfellow’s administrative team.

Despite the rule, some students hide their laptops under a jacket to smuggle them in. They then spend lunch secretly watching something, doing homework, or playing games.

“I think students shouldn’t be allowed to use their laptops during lunch because it’s a time where everyone is eating and is one of the few moments you can take a break from your laptops,” said 7th grader Honor Saxe.

Laptops are being used all day, and students need to take a break at some point. When the weather isn’t pleasant outside, kids really don’t have a choice and have to stay inside, and while recess is meant to be a good time to relax, the average student will be on their laptops.

“I definitely think students should be allowed to use their computers during indoor recess because it is recess, and they should be allowed to have fun, especially during the start of the year, some people may be new, and it’s hard to make new friends when you can barely find the time to,” Exclaimed a 7th grader Luciana Soliz.

At the end of the day, everyone has different experiences when it comes to using their laptops, and although it may be annoying, it’s not bad going outside and appreciating the fresh air every once in a while.