BYOD in the Classroom

How Do We Manage It?


How do we mentally prepare to allow students to bring electronics into our classrooms considering we have always insisted they be kept out?


Establish classroom norms, routines and community. Then increase and refine your class activities to integrate technology where appropriate and advantageous.

Norms and Routines

1. Survey your classes to determine what devices and apps they have available. Determine student availability to their devices. If students do not have access to a device, develop a plan to utilize a school laptop or create group activities. In addition, get parent feedback.

2. Set clear expectations for students on how and when they can use their devices in your classroom. These expectations should be posted where they are easily visible to students. You may co-create with students’ success criteria as well as consequences for inappropriate use. Be aware of school policy for student infractions set forth in the student handbook and steer away from restricting technology use as a consequence for inappropriate behavior.

3. Remember that not every student needs to be using a device at the same time. Each day different students can take turns or be assigned jobs.

4. When devices are not in use (during a test or a lesson) have students leave their devices on their desks face down in silent mode or with headphones plugged into the device.

5. Arrange your classroom to foster ease of use and your ability to supervise proper usage as well as student collaboration and teacher-student conferencing. Suggestion: Arrange desks in pairs or small groups with students facing each other when working on devices. Make sure you monitor the room—walk around and conference with individual students.

6. Have verbal/visual cues to manage student device use. (see student poster for examples)

7. Set clear time limits for activities that require student devices.

8. Be specific how you would like work submitted from a mobile device. (Email, Edline etc.) Determine a method you prefer to create consistency and easy management.

9. Allow students to teach each other about how their device works. Do not worry about becoming proficient using every type of device - ask students to help each other. Have a no tolerance policy for any abuse of another’s device.

10. Make sure students know that learning is the ultimate goal of device usage in your class.



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