Students and Cell Phones

Cell phones are a very important aspect in a teenagers life. Teenagers use cell phones for communication purposes with their friends and family. They can also use them as a support for homework or research. One thing that has caught most parents minds is the fact that teenagers are always on their cell phones; even in the classroom when they are not suppose to be. By doing these tips, it can set limits from the cell phone and also it can help in the transition phase of reducing screen time. 

Tip #1 Cell Phones Are A Privilege 

Whenever a parent gives a teenager a cell phone, they first need to lay the groundwork and the rules of that phone. The parent writes a contract stating that the phone is a privilege, it must be only used at school for school work or communication to the parents, and one hour at home texting friends after all homework and chores are done. If the teenager does not abide with the rules, then the parent takes the cell phone away for a day or however many days the contract says. Remember, the teenager needs to realize that cell phones can be a great gadget to have; if they are used properly with limitations. 

Tip #2 Cell Phones Used In Schools 

A cell phone is a great way to communicate with family and friends. A great way to teach the teenager to balance out using the cell phone in school and communication with the parents are in the following ways. Parents need to help the teenager write goals that go along with the cell phones. A goal for communication at school could be that the teenager will communicate with only the parents during the school day if they need a ride home or a change of afterschool plans. Another communication goal is that there will not be any texting of friends until the end of the school day. A school goal could be that the teenager will use the cell phone’s internet for research and school work ideas only during the school day only if the teacher allows it. Teenagers can achieve these goals when there are positive reinforcements for every goal met. 

Tip #3 Cell Phones Used at Home/Car 

Teenagers need help with setting boundaries. Goal setting and having them sign for it can be a very effective way for them to maintain these boundaries. Also, using positive reinforcements can help reinforce these boundaries too. An example of a goal 

for the home could be the teenager will be able to use their cell phones after all homework, studying, and work or chores are completed. A positive reinforcement for a good goal report is that cell phone usage at home will increase to 30 minutes every time a goal is achieved. An example of a car goal could be that the teenager will only use hand free cell phone usage in an emergency situation and abide by the laws of the DMV. A positive reinforcement for the car goal is that the teenager can use the phone more at home when car goals are achieved. Teenagers can learn to set limits on cell phones at home and in the car. 


Cell phones are such a great impact in a teenagers life; only if goals and limitations are in place. Even though a teenager needs more freedom to make choices, they are scared to make too many choices at one time. Teenagers are still looking to the parents to help nurture them and also help them make wise decisions at their level. With all of these tips, teenagers can learn to adjust work with pleasure in using the cell phone. 

By Marcella (Marcy) Hays


(2014, Aug. 26) The Invisible Addiction: Cell Phone Activities and . . . 

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(2018, Jan. 16) Teens and Dangerous Levels of Cell Phone Use/Psychology . . . 

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