Focus on Fidgets
By JAYDEN KUPFERMAN
The newest trend within the Jericho School District is the fidget toy. Many students have become enamored with the cubes and spinners, and find them very entertaining. However, some teachers and students find them to be distracting in the learning environment.
The most popular forms of fidget toys, the fidget spinner and fidget cube, are found at drug stores, toy stores, and convenience stores. One claim made by toy manufacturers is that these devices are designed to help students focus better in class. However, many students and school professionals disagree.
Freshman Tatum W. said that she has never used a fidget toy but she has seen students playing with them in class. She added, “They look very entertaining and fun, but the fidget toys are distracting in class because I hear the noises of other students playing with them.”
Pupil Personnel Curriculum Associate Dr. Joseph Sapienza said, “I think that learning about the fidget toy’s intended use and purpose may help students understand themselves as learners.” He also stated his opinion on what he thinks about students using fidget toys in school. “I wouldn’t suggest running out and buying one, but it’s definitely worthwhile for students to think about their own attention and focus,” he said.
Cantiague Elementary school kindergarten teacher Mandy Brotman said, “It is very distracting to my students because it’s used as a toy.” She added, “Although it is supposed to be a tool to help children concentrate, it interferes with their learning.”
Senior Armina S. said, “I think the fidget spinners are a distraction to me because I would only focus on spinning it instead of focusing on my work.” Likewise, freshman Jason D. said, “The fidget spinner is distracting because it makes you pay attention to the spinning, instead of focusing on the class lesson.”
On the other hand, freshman Lily G said, “I would rather use a fidget toy rather than clicking my pen in class. It would help me focus on my work and not on tapping my foot and clicking a pen.
Sales of fidget toys are on the rise, but until more research is conducted about their effectiveness for learning, students might be better off keeping them at home.
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