MOBILE PHONES IN THE EFL CLASSROOM
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Technology in the classroom can be a double-edged sword. It can be useful for our lessons and a great resource for materials. At the same time, it can be a source of distraction and a cause for discipline if not utilised appropriately. Mobile phones in the EFL classroom, in particular are often a cause for concern for teachers. They are often illegal devices in EFL classrooms and so are a temptation to our students. Plus it’s quite distracting for teachers to see their students with their heads down playing with their phones under their desks!
How can we make sure we utilise mobile phones in the EFL classroom effectively while not allowing them to become problematic for our lessons? Here are a few ideas:
Use mobile phones regularly in the EFL classroom
It’s very easy to incorporate mobile phones in your lessons. They can be used in a range of different ways and for many different activities. By using mobile phones regularly in your lessons you are not giving them special status. They won’t be considered taboo in the classroom, so your students will be less tempted to WhatsApp their friends or play Candy Crush during class.
Use mobile phones communicatively in the EFL classroom
Whatever activities you decide to do with your mobile phones, make them group activities. If your students are utilising their mobile phones individually, it will be more difficult to ensure they are working on-task. If, however, they are working with a partner or in groups they will be held accountable for what they are doing on their phone.
Be creative with mobile phones in the EFL classroom
The great thing about mobile phones is that they are, well, mobile. You don’t need to sit in the classroom to use them. You can send your students out into the school or the local neighbourhood (if they are adults) and make use of their mobile phones in a natural environment. Examples of activities are: finding and taking photos of particular objects, recording interviews with locals, and researching certain local landmarks on a treasure hunt.
Maintaining discipline with mobile phones in the EFL classroom
Of course there is always the chance your learners may take advantage of the fact that you are using mobile phones in the classroom and use them for entertainment rather than the educational activity you had planned. There are a few things you can do to avoid this.
Firstly, set time limits on activities. Don’t allow too much time to complete an activity. If students finish quickly with time to spare they will more than likely use their phones to pass the time.
Then, make sure your activities are set at the correct level. You want them to be challenging but not impossible. If in doubt, rather aim for a more difficult activity which you can provide scaffolding for if necessary.
Finally, don’t ban mobile phones outright. Accept that they are now a part of the classroom and that this might be a battle you can’t win. Acknowledge their usefulness in the classroom by allowing your students to use their online dictionary or look something up online, but hold your students accountable for what they are doing with their phones.
Mobile phones in the EFL classroom can be an asset if we know how to make use of them in ways which satisfy our students without causing unnecessary disruptions to our lessons.
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LAST UPDATED: 19th July 2022
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ELEARNING FUTURES LTD,
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Rights concerning the processing of your personal information
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- In some situations, you have the right to require us to restrict the processing of your personal information. We may restrict your personal information by temporarily moving the information to another processing system, making the information unavailable to users, or temporarily removing published information from a website. We may also use technical methods to ensure the personal information is not subject to further processing and cannot be changed. When we have restricted processing of personal information, this will be clearly indicated on our systems.
- You can require us to restrict processing in the following circumstances:
- You are concerned that the information we hold about you is inaccurate. You can ask us to restrict the information until we can determine whether the information is accurate or inaccurate.
- We are processing your personal data unlawfully and you do not want us to delete the information but restrict it instead.
- We no longer need the information for the purposes for which we collected it, but they are needed by you for the establishment, exercise or defence of legal claims.
- You have objected to the processing (see below), and we need to decide whether the legitimate grounds we have to process the information override your legitimate interests.
Processing you think is unlawful
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Processing of personal information you think is inaccurate
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- If we find that the personal information we are processing about you is inaccurate, we will take appropriate steps to correct the information.
Personal information is no longer needed by ELEARNING FUTURES LTD but needed by you in connection with a legal claim
- In most circumstances, we will securely delete or dispose of personal information when we no longer need it for our legitimate business purposes. Our approach to retention is outlined in our corporate retention schedules.
- However, if the personal information we no longer need would assist you in establishing, exercising or defending a legal claim, you can require us to keep the information for as long as necessary. We may ask you to provide an explanation and any available supporting evidence that a legal claim is ongoing or contemplated.
Right to erasure of personal data (“the right to be forgotten”)
In the following circumstances, you have the right to require that ELEARNING FUTURES LTD securely deletes or destroys your personal information:
- If the personal information we hold about you is no longer necessary for the purposes for which we originally collected it.
- The processing is based on consent – if you have previously given your consent to ELEARNING FUTURES LTD collecting and processing your personal information, and you notify us that you withdraw your consent. Please note: withdrawing your consent does not mean the processing of your personal data which occurred before the withdrawal was unlawful.
- We are processing your personal information for direct marketing purposes, and you want us to stop.
- If you think ELEARNING FUTURES LTD has processed your personal information unlawfully.
If you think any of the above situations apply, we may ask you for an explanation and further information to verify this.
Right to object to processing
You have the right to object to the ELEARNING FUTURES LTD processing your personal data in the following circumstances:
Personal information used for direct marketing
If we are using your personal information to send you direct marketing, you have the right to object at any time. If you exercise this right, we will stop processing your personal information for direct marketing purposes. However, we may keep your information on a “suppression list” to ensure your information is not added to any marketing lists at some point in the future.
Automated decision making and profiling
- ‘Profiling’ is the automated use of personal data held on a computer to analyse or predict things that have a legal effect, or other similarly significant effects, on the individual. Examples would include economic situation, health, personal preferences or interests and location. You have the right not to be subject to a solely automated decision (that is, a decision made electronically, with no human intervention), and this may include profiling (although there is no general right to object to profiling). If you are concerned the ELEARNING FUTURES LTD has made a solely automated decision about you, you can object.
- Please note, ELEARNING FUTURES LTD is allowed to carry out automated decisions with no human intervention where you have given your explicit consent to this processing (although you have the right to withdraw your consent).
- We are also permitted to make automated decisions with no human intervention in the following circumstances:
- The automated decision is necessary to enter into, or perform a contract, or complete a contract involving you and the ELEARNING FUTURES LTD.
- The automated decision is allowed under a law passed at the European Union level, or at the level of the European Union or EEA member state level (i.e., is allowed under national law). The law will provide safeguards to protect your rights and freedoms.
However, you still have a general right to object in both of the above circumstances, providing reasons why you think the processing is having a negative effect on you. If you do object, we will carefully consider your reasons, and decide whether to review the decision-making process in your specific case.
Right to data portability
- If you have provided your information to ELEARNING FUTURES LTD, you have the right to request and receive a copy of that information in a structured, commonly used and machine-readable format.
- You also have the right to ask us to send the information we hold about you to another organisation.
- There are some situations in which the right to data portability does not apply. For further information, please contact us.
Exercising your rights concerning the processing of your personal information
If you wish to exercise any of the above rights concerning the way in which we process your personal information, please contact:
Risk Management Team
ELEARNING FUTURES LTD,
21-22 Old Steine,
Email: [email protected]
Your right to complain to a national data protection regulator (data protection supervisory authority)
- If you think we have processed your personal information unfairly or unlawfully, or we have not complied with your rights under GDPR, you have the right to complain to a national data protection regulator.
- Complaints about how we process your personal information can be considered by the data protection regulator.