By Kieran O’Mahony
HAVING no access to a mobile phone could be the stuff of nightmares for many teenagers.
However, the first and second year students at St Mary’s Secondary School in Macroom are truly showing that they can do without one, for one day a week at least.
The brainchild of deputy principal Angela Collins, the ‘No Technology Day’ sees the students abstaining from using their mobile phones – and other electronic devices – every Monday.
‘It was part of a discussion on technology and how people send unkind text messages when they would never say these things face-to-face. In one of my lessons I personalised my mobile and gave it a name and humanised it and asked the students what type of messages does the phone carry,’ Angela told The Southern Star.
‘Over the course of four lessons, I challenged them to forget about their phones, and while first years found it easier to consider a day without a phone, the second year students said they would find it harder.’
Having discussed the idea with parents of the students, who were very much behind it, they decided to assign Monday as a day for no mobiles, as the students may have information overload after the weekend.
‘We sent out letters to the parents and for the most part they are taking part in this initiative and they take the phones from them on a Sunday night and this will continue until the end of this school term.’ Much to the delight of Angela and that of other teachers, the students are already reporting that they have fewer distractions, are reading more and engaging more with their siblings. ‘They can get information overload at times which is taking from social and sports activities,’ she said.