Many teachers and school admin struggle with the use of cell phones in school on an almost daily basis. Many schools have banned cell phone use because they believe them to have a negative impact on learning. This is a widespread and widely debated topic, and there are many differing views on it.
One point of view is that children being allowed to have their phones in school can provide them with an elevated learning experience because they can have immediate access to research anything that they need. Another school of thought is from the parents. The parents believe that they should have control over whether or not they allow there kids to take phones to school or not, and that the school should stay out of it. Most parents believe that the schools banning phones in the classroom is an extreme measure. They want to be able to have immediate contact with their kids while they are traveling to school, in school, or on the way home from school. However, this doesn't mean that the parents are blind to the distractions that cell phones can cause.
Many cell phone providers offer the capabilities of parents to prevent their children from accessing certain things, like the internet, unless they're allowed to. This can help with the control of cell phone use in schools. Parents want the ability to decide without the school making the decision for them. Most schools, even if they haven't banned cell phones, have rules regarding the use of phones. For example, they must be on silent, they can only be used during passing periods, etc. This is another subject for debate, as banning phones in schools is no longer just a black and white issue, it's a more widespread litany of differing opinions and options, and no one has been able to quite agree on any of them.
The many trains of thought are always battling for advantage in this ongoing debate. What is your opinion on phone use in schools? Is it a benefit, or a deficit? Do you think that the schools should have the right to ban cells phones even being present, or should that decision be left to the parents?
A few months ago, a heartbreaking video went viral. A sea turtle had a plastic straw stuck up its nose. Here is the shortened video: www.youtube.com/watch?v=vJmi_gwziy4. The original video shows it had taken about 10 minutes to remove this straw and that he turtle was obviously in pain the entire time. This video opened many people's eyes to the environmental damage that plastics have. About 71% of seabirds and 30% of turtles have been found with plastic in their stomachs. Plastic pollution is a very serious problem, and if a solution has not been created, it is projected that by the year 2050 there will be more plastics in our oceans than sea life.
Plastic Straws are one of the hardest things to recycle. We can put them into recycling, but they are so lightweight that when it comes to separating the plastics, they drop through sorting screens, mix with other materials, and are too small to separate. In the end, they contaminate recycling loads or just become trash. Straws primarily end up in the ocean because of littering.
People are pushing for plastic straws to be banned. In July, Seattle became the first major city to ban plastic straws and utensils. San Francisco passed a similar law that will take effect in 2019. Starbucks has vowed that by 2020 straws will be removed from their stores. A few major airlines and hotels have also committed to the straw ban.
What do you think about the straw ban? Is it reasonable and practical? Do you think it is a solution or just a step in the right direction? Should it be a city and business movement, or a statewide movement?
Last week for the 30th anniversary of their “Just Do It” slogan, Nike released an advertisement that depicts NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick with the words, “Believe in something, even if it means sacrificing everything.” The initial reaction from the public was fiercely against the ad. For instance, Nike shares went down about three percent immediately upon release as well as President Trump tweeting in on the issue saying, “Nike is getting absolutely killed with anger and boycotts.” Since then, the share prices have recovered along with a 31 percent growth in sales (almost double then the same time last year), even though only 34 percent of the United States view Kaepernick positively.
This all began over two years ago with Colin Kaepernick kneeling during the national anthem to bring to light a message of racial injustice that occurs within the United States and the world. Many people do not view his actions to be heroic though. It can be viewed as extremely disrespectful to the men and women who have fought and died in order to keep our country safe from threats foreign and domestic.
What is your opinion on this topic? Do you see the actions of Colin Kaepernick as necessary steps to reach racial equality or as a distraction and lack of respect towards America’s veterans? Or something else? Why?
Source: White, Martha C. “What Boycott? Nike Sales Are Up 31 Percent Since The Kaepernick Campaign.” NBC News, 10 Sept. 2018, https://www.nbcnews.com/business/business-news/what-boycott-nike-sales-are-31-percent-kaepernick-campaign-n908251. Accessed 11 Sept. 2018
Greetings, and welcome to Pacebook! I want to begin our blogging experience by continuing to get to know one another a little bit better. As you have likely noticed, I am drawing on Dr. Who quite a bit for its connection to literature (the ability of books to transport you through time and space, like a TARDIS, for you Whovians). However, the same is probably equally true for all art, especially music. As a musician, I am naturally drawn to the parallels between music and literature, which was actually the focal part of my Master's Thesis (reading the "jazz novel" as a model for more egalitarian communication in a post-national world). Music also seems to have special ties to memory, though, in a way that transcends language, and a simple few bars from a song can trigger very specific memories. So, I want you to think of a song that serves as a TARDIS for you and transports you to another time and place.
One song (of many) that functions as a TARDIS for me is "One Tin Soldier" by The Original Castle (and more famously performed by Coven). More accurately, however, it was performed by my dad, and I didn't actually hear the original until years later. It is a protest song that talks about greed and how it corrupts people and is the root cause behind many (if not all) wars. More than that, though, the song tells a story which is delivered quite skillfully and with ample amounts of development and irony. Actually, the song has many parallels to "The Pardoner's Tale" from Chaucer's The Canterbury Tales, which we will be looking at later in the year, but of course I didn't know that at the time; I simply enjoyed the melody, the moral, and the complexities of the song. It is the first "favorite song" I remember having, and the first song I recall attempting to write was a very close imitation of "One Tin Soldier." Hearing it now takes me back to sitting at my father's feet in our old house when I was four or five years old, although I don't think the studio version is as good (the flute part is a little cheesy, really). While it's not a song I listen to very often, it does evoke many memories when I do, and it has certainly had a profound influence on me, both as a person and as a lover of stories. If you've never heard it, here is the original by The Original Castle:
Now, I want to hear from you. What is a song that takes you back to another time and place? Explain in detail, and include a link to YouTube, so we can all listen to it as well, please. I look forward to hearing your stories!
Respond to the following prompts: