This week, I figured I would give you all a break from hearing about my Spanish-speaking endeavors and blog about keeping an attention journal. I kept track of sessions from Monday to Friday this week. I first noticed that my sessions were much longer than the required fifteen minutes because (1) I had much more than fifteen minutes worth of homework and (2) I was constantly distracted.
The first day of my attention journal, my session was (mostly) school-related. After practice, I went to the basement computer lab in the library. While I was there, I completed forum responses, explored some of the resources for this week’s modules, and began reading for another class. I would occasionally take breaks to text a friend or scroll through social media. Although I had to remind myself to stay on task, I would consider Monday’s session a success.
My second session was much less productive. I did do homework on Tuesday, but I recorded a time when I didn’t. In between classes, work, and practice, I watched Netflix in my room while scrolling through social media. Although I appreciated the break from the rest of my day, I felt guilty for not doing my homework and slight panic that I wouldn’t have enough time to finish it later. For any of you who read my other blog post, this was the day I spent about three hours on my phone. In other words, I could have spent my time a lot better on Tuesday.
These two sessions were the most extreme of my five recorded days; the other three fell somewhere in between on the scale of productivity. I did find that my bed is a much less productive place for homework than any desk is. When working in bed, I have a tendency to get distracted and tired. One thing I did notice was that my multi-tasking or break-taking wasn’t as effective as I had hoped. In my head, I planned to take a five minute break after finishing each assignment; however, what actually happened is I would randomly grab my phone in the middle of finishing an assignment and scroll through Snapchat, Facebook, and/or Instagram for (sometimes) over fifteen minutes.
My biggest lesson from this week is that technology, especially my phone, is a much larger part of my life than I had realized, and I don’t think I’m alone in that. Social media especially has so seamlessly integrated itself into our lives, and many people, myself included, don’t realize how much time it is stealing. Although it is necessary for me to integrate technology into my future classroom, I think it is also my duty to warn students of its harmful effects and encourage them to take a break from it every once in a while.