My son is 11 years old. The age when most parents start the debate on whether or not to buy a cell phone for the child. Being that we homeschool, the typical reasons for wanting a cell phone for my son are null and void. He won't be staying after school for any meetings or activities. The activities he does participate in, either it's a sport (which HELLO- what parent would miss watching their kid on the field or court?) or another homeschool activity such as tennis lessons, piano or chorus (not worth me dropping him off for one hour just to turn around and come back to get him.). Playing at friends houses, well, the parents have a phone. So there is no justifiable reason for him to have a phone.
But the reason I REALLY don't want him to have one is this; a pet peeve of mine is going out to dinner, or the grocery store, or pretty much anywhere and seeing a kid with their eyes glued to their phone, thumbs texting 90 to nothing. Ignoring their parents, friends, and anyone else who happens to be around them. Possibly worse than that is seeing a parent out at a restaurant with a child and the PARENT yapping away on the phone while the kid eats in silence.
Ironically it seems that 'communication devices' have caused a downward spiral in a lack of real communication- face-to-face conversation. It's isolating teens and tweens from family moments. It's robbing them of memories they could be making. I want my children to learn the art of conversation. The give and take...the emotion shared when laughing with someone, or when offering sympathy. I want them to greet people they meet with a confident smile and greeting, not a disturbed grunt when they are forced to take their eyes away from their phone and greet someone.
So, here my little family will sit in the Stone Ages with no tweens having their own phones. That's okay. At least I am here with great company.