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This Actually Gets Kids Off Smartphones at School

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Smartphone addiction is real, people. We often don’t think of it as being in the same categories as alcohol or drug abuse, but it has been proven by studies that smartphone use changes our brain chemistry — especially in younger people.

Obviously, smartphones aren’t going to go away anytime soon. So what can we do to combat this?  Well, musician Graham Dugoni created a clever, simple solution.

Yondr is a small, gray neoprene pouch that “locks” smartphones. The pouches can be rented for a single event, or for longterm use by facilities like courtrooms, concert venues and, perhaps most pointedly, schools. The pouches “lock away” phones — only a Yondr-supplied gadget can unlock them.

According to The Washington Post, the pouches are now used in more than 600 U.S. schools — after all, as Dugoni points out, part of preventing social media addiction is to nip it in the bud in the first place.

According to The Post, at San Lorenzo High School in California — where students this year have been required to “Yondr” their phone for the entire day (and, yes, it’s a verb, as the Post astutely points out) —  some remarkable things happened: grades went up and disciplinary problems went down.

But another incredible thing happened, too. “The campus is really loud now,” principal Allison Silvestri said. “Students are interacting, talking to each other, reading, kicking a ball, socializing — because they’re not standing in a circle texting each other.”

Sounds pretty idyllic, right? Or at, at least, something like the school days of our childhoods. But perhaps that’s the future, too.

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