MISD’s BYOD Program
In an effort to integrate technology-based learning into the classroom, Mesquite ISD has launched a new program entitled BYOD. Standing for “bring your own device,” the program allows students to use their phones or other wireless devices for learning purposes in the classroom.
Although there has been some debate over whether or not the students would be able to ignore the temptations to use their devices for non-educational purposes, most teachers think it’s worth the risk.
“Engaging students is important,” Science teacher Linda Logan said. “We as teachers struggle to reach each student. [BYOD] helps us to reach them more on a regular basis.”
Not only are teachers letting students use their devices in class; they are also using social learning platforms such as Edmodo to communicate with students outside of the classroom.
“I have used [BYOD] to help my freshmen get quick access to our website, Edmodo, to assessment sites like Socrative and to study sites like Quizlet.” Logan said.
Giving students an opportunity to use their phones in class not only excites them, but for some, it is a way to express themselves in a way which they formerly had not been allowed to.
“I like BYOD because it lets us interact in different ways other than just using a paper and pencil,” Freshman Vanessa Taylor said.
Freshmen will be able to experience technology in the classroom for the remainder of their high school careers, whereas seniors have not had that luxury thus far. Even still, some seniors are still able to appreciate the benefits of BYOD.
“Not only does [BYOD] provide students with efficient communication with their teacher, but it also eliminates distraction by allowing students to incorporate their devices in their studies,” Senior Jerrod Followwell said.
A common misconception regarding BYOD is that it allows students to access their phones at any time and for any reason.
“BYOD means you have access to your phone, but controlled access to your phone,” Technology Facilitator Ryan Smith said. “Instead of hunting down phones and taking them, we want them to enhance the process to where kids actually enjoy using them in class for educational purposes.”
BYOD provides a way for teachers and students to step out of their comfort zones and embrace the technologically savvy aspects of today’s society.