Teaching by texting starts to take hold

A growing number of educators believe that texting can be a teaching tool, AOL News reports. For subjects ranging from Spanish to science, and for uses ranging from homework help to exam reminders, teachers around the country are beginning to allow students to text in class. “You’ve got a classroom full of students walking in with a computer in their pocket. Why would you not use it?” said Ron Smith, who has defied district policy for the past five years to allow cell-phone use in his high school art and design classes in Hollywood, Calif. At Chester Middle School, an hour north of New York City, Principal Ernie Jackson, 52, challenged his staff to teach poetry using text messaging. He then gave an old version of a state test to those students who texted in summaries of the poems and to those who learned the poems in a traditional manner. The result: Those who texted averaged 80 percent on the exam, versus 40 percent for those who didn’t. “If the kids are motivated, they do better than if they’re not. The kids are very motivated about doing this,” Jackson said in a telephone interview with AOL News…

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