by Kathiann Kowalski
We've identified these texts as great options for text pairings based on similar themes, literary devices, topic, or writing style. Supplement your lesson with one or more of these options and challenge students to compare and contrast the texts. To assign a paired text, click on the text to go to its page and click the "Assign Text" button there.
Many Younger Facebook Users 'Unfriend' The Network
- Patti Neighmond
In this article published by NPR, Patti Neighmod of “All Things Considered” interviews a number of individuals who deactivated their Facebook accounts. This article explores the different reasons that people choose to deactivate from Facebook, such as being overwhelmed with too much information and rise of other social media networks including Instagram and Twitter.Pair “Watch Out—Cell Phones Can Be Addictive” with “Many Younger Facebook Users ‘Unfriend’ the Network” and ask students to weigh the costs and benefits of social networking sites using evidence from both articles.
Anti-Social Networks? We’re Just As Cliquey Online
- Laura Sydell
In “Anti-Social Networks? We’re Just as Cliquey Online,” Laura Sydell from NPR’s All Things Considered discusses how social networks can reinforce cliques and biases.Pair “Watch Out—Cell Phones Can Be Addictive” with “Anti-Social Networks? We’re Just as Cliquey Online” to continue the discussion about the costs and benefits of social networking sites. How are social networking sites changing the way we interact? Is there evidence from “Anti-Social Networks” that support the theories in “Watch Out—Cell Phones Can Be Addictive?”
The Distracted Teenage Brain
- Alison Pearce Stevens
In this article, a 2014 study reveals that teenage brains are more likely to be driven — and distracted — by rewards than adults'.Pair “Watch Out: Cell Phones Can Be Addictive” with “The Distracted Teenage Brain” and ask students to consider how teens specifically might be more susceptible to the addictive nature of cell phones.
- Barbara Radner
“Today’s Telephone” explores the progression of technology before, during, and after Alexander Graham Bell’s invention of the modern telephone.Pair “Today’s Telephone” with “Watch Out: Cell Phones Can Be Addictive” and ask students to think about the the pros and cons of technology as they are expressed in each piece. Do you think things like smartphone addiction and shortened attention spans are just an unfortunate side effect of amazing technological innovations, or do they represent a more serious threat to society? How does the nature of the advancements presented in “Today’s Telephone”—with each one building upon the other—portray the realm of innovation? Do you think inventors consider the negative possibilities associated with their inventions? Should they?
- John P. Curtin
In John P. Curtin’s “Technology Haiku,” the speaker reflects on the evolution of technology and wonders where it will go next.Pair “Watch Out: Cell Phones Can Be Addictive” with “Technology Haiku” and ask students to consider the positive and negative effects that technology can have on people. Ask students to consider how the speaker in “Technology Haiku” might describe the development of cell phone technology.
How Video Games Are Getting Inside Your Head — And Wallet
- Steve Henn, for NPR
In the informational text, “How Video Games Are Getting Inside Your Head – And Wallet,” Steve Henn discusses how game companies’ research influences gamers.Pair “Watch Out: Cell Phones Can Be Addictive” with “How Video Games Are Getting Inside Your Head – And Wallet” and ask students to compare cell phone addiction with gaming addiction. How do the consequences of the two addictions compare? Do students think that one addiction is worse than the other? If so, in what way?
When Playing Video Games Means Sitting On Life's Sidelines
- NPR Staff
The informational text “When Playing Video Games Means Sitting On Life’s Sidelines” explores a rehabilitation center helping people recover from their technology addictions.Pair “Watch Out: Cell Phones Can Be Addictive” with “When Playing Video Games Means Sitting On Life’s Sidelines” to provide students with additional information about how technology can be addictive. How do students think addiction to a cell phone compares to being addicted to video games? How do both texts explore the term “addiction”? When does technology usage become an addiction rather than just a form of entertainment?
The power of ‘like’
- Alison Pearce Stevens
In the informational text “The power of ‘like,’” Alison Pearce Stevens discusses how posts and “likes” on social media have the power to influence others.Pair “Watch Out: Cell Phones Can Be Addictive” with “The power of ‘like’” and ask students to discuss how people are impacted by their use of technology. Do students think that the area of the brain that is activated by social media “likes” could lead to addiction? Why or why not? What are other risks of using technology and social media?
'Couch potatoes' tend to be TV-energy hogs
- Kathiann Kowalski
In the informational text, “Couch potatoes’ tend to be TV-energy hogs,” Kathiann Kowalski discusses how much energy people who watch a lot of television use.Pair “Watch Out: Cell Phones Can be Addictive” with “’Couch potatoes’ tend to be TV-energy hogs” to provide students with information about the addictive nature of cellphones. Do students think that television is similarly addictive? Why or why not? Ask students to consider how cell phones are powered. Are cell phones wasting energy or affecting the environment in other ways?