I was dropping my son at school yesterday when he realized he left his cell phone at home. Tragedy! Big tragedy!
I told him he would make it through the day without his phone, but he explained that his AP History teacher gives extra credit points to students who put their phones in her basket when they enter the classroom.
“Please, let me use your phone today,” he begged.
“I will let you use mine, but I need to use yours,” I told him. So, we made a deal and he provided me his password to unlock his phone. “What a bonanza! I legitimately had completely access to his phone!”
As soon as I picked it up and unlocked it, the phone already was buzzing and pinging with incoming messages. Let me just say that my day quickly turned into a learning experience about teen cell phone useage, particularly what teens talk about and what goes on in high school.
First, my son received a text invitation to a birthday party. It was pretty high tech with lots of pop ups. I was impressed!
Next, he received a series of complaints about various teachers. Boy, kids complain about teachers A LOT! They complain about everything from their appearances to their demeanors to their attitudes to their fairness. I decided I don’t want to be a high school teacher.
From the messages that followed, I learned who made a new twitter account, who posted something funny to Instagram and who had made an awful musical.ly video. It made me wonder if teens can make it through a day without social media? Probably not.
What really cracked me up were the group texts. They had such hilarious names like APaulaDeen and FrackiesPlus2. One clever message poster call himself Lord Farquaad, after the villain in Shrek, and had a lot to say about who he considered as hot as Princess Fiona. Teens are quite creative and funny in group texts. They also are busy posting all day long — even when they’re supposed to be participating in class. I began to understand why my son’s teacher had enticed her students to leave their phones in a box at the door.
I also learned from text messages that teens are pretty helpful to each other as far as sharing info about homework assignments and what chapters the next day’s quiz is going to include. I started wishing we had cell phones when I was in high school.
On the flip side, my son saw all my text messages coming in. I’m sure he found them boring compared to his. Meanwhile, I couldn’t call anyone all day because I don’t have any cell numbers memorized. I realized I rely way too much on my contact list.
Still, I enjoyed a peek into the teen life — even if it was just for a day. I only can imagine what I would have learned if I had gotten to have my son’s phone for the night, too. Oh well, a mom can dream….