Over the summer, as I was researching different ways to manage cell phones in the classroom (our school does not allow cell phone use in class), I came across the great idea of offering a cell phone charging station. This would allow the kids to charge their cell phone while keeping it put away (allowing them not to lose it to the office). The idea was that by allowing them to charge their phones during class, it would give them an incentive to keep the phones put away.
At the beginning of the school year, my charging station looked like this:
I basically took a shoe organizer, hung it on the wall, attached 3 power strips and put a bunch of charging cords in the white organizer you see next to it. For a few months, this worked well. After a while, however, my students began trying to access the station more during class. There was also an incident where a student’s phone went missing, and no one owned up to hiding it until the assistant principal and campus officer came in the room. After that, I took all options for charging away and went back to the old campus rule; if I saw the phone, it went directly to the office to be “bought back” by the parent. UNTIL I found a great solution!
My cousin works up in the Dallas area. I was discussing the issue with her one day, and she told me about a cell phone box that she uses in her classroom. The box can hold many more phones that the previous charging station I had, and it allows for a lock on the front. A teacher friend of my cousin’s builds these for a decent price. I immediately began to talk to her friend about making me one. She makes the boxes with a basic frame idea in mind, but customizes to some of the specifications that you give her. After receiving the box, I took it back to my parents over the Christmas break to spray paint it. (I live in an apartment, so I have no place to spray paint.) I also purchased the USB ports and android plugs to go inside. Here is the final product:
I absolutely LOVE this charging station and the kids are excited about it as well. Kids who might not normally give up their phones, love the idea of charging their phones while they are in class and not having to worry about anyone taking their phone because it’s locked. It was definitely worth the money!