From the West Australian:
Prestigious girls’ school Penrhos College has banned students from using mobile phones during their lunch and recess breaks because of concerns students are losing the art of conversation.
Principal Meg Melville said, even though girls were sitting in groups during breaks, teachers had become aware students were texting their friends instead of talking to each other.
“We decided we wanted to really encourage them during their break times at school to have conversations with one another, face-to-face,” she said.
Mrs Melville said technology was embedded in the curriculum and mobile phones had become an important part of that.
But it was just as important for students to develop conversation skills such as understanding the nuances conveyed by people’s reactions and body language.
“You can gauge how a conversation is going by looking at the way people are responding – you can’t do that in texting,” she said.
“It’s just about being present in the moment. They don’t have to be taking photos of themselves or pictures of what they’ve had for lunch at the canteen.”
Mrs Melville said many adults also did not realise it was “incredibly rude” to look at their phone when with other people.
She said students could still immerse themselves in social media outside school hours.
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