By: Anano Kapanadze
For senior Heaven Rivera who said she often fidgets in class, buying a fidget spinner was something that she felt would help her.
“I purchased it because I tend to fidget and tap my leg when I’m bored or nervous,” said Rivera. “It tends to calm me down because I’m not constantly tapping my leg.”
Rivera is just one of the many Murrowites who are seen spinning these fidgets while in the hallway, talking to friends and for some, even in class.
According to Google trends, online searches for fidget spinners began spiking in April and currently occupy every spot in Amazon’s top 20 best-selling toys. The most popular fidget spinners at school is made of plastic, have weights attached to the three blades in order to make it spin.
Invented in the 1990s to relieve stress, manufacturers often claim that the toy acts as a panacea for anxiety, ADD, and ADHD.
The toys are also inexpensive, usually a few dollars but there are more expensive ones sold online – it depends on the material — for hundreds of dollars.
Rayna Jesilyn Pajares Held said she likes the toy because it does exactly what its supposed to.
“It calms me because it helps me to use my fingers in different ways and the tactile motion can be very therapeutic especially when nervous,” the senior said.
Bryce Boyd said he initially bought it for the same reason.
“It’s pretty calming in class when I have the anxiety of having the whole class staring at me while I mess up on my reading,” sids Boyd.
However, Boyd said he got tired of it real fast.
“I expected it to be somewhat fun and to give me something to do with my hands. I was wrong, it’s as boring as watching grass grow,” he said. “I would recommend buying mozzarella sticks instead”
Emily Dominguez also said that she got tired of it fast.
“It didn’t fulfill my expectations, it does nothing!” the senior said.
Junior Ariana Reyes was given the gadget by her boyfriend, who thought that she could use it because she gets anxious at times. She said that the toy is only beneficial if you’re trying to reduce stress.
“It really is meant for anxiety and to help with that but I see people playing with it and doing all the tricks and stuff, but if you’re using it for the correct purpose then do it but if you’re just bringing toys to school and using it as an excuse for anxiety then don’t,” says Reyes.
Another issue is that students are using it in classrooms and that has become a distraction. Teachers have mixed feelings about students using them in classrooms.
“It doesn’t bother me if students use it in class if they feel calmer using it,” said Spanish teacher, Ms. Josephine Martingano. “I don’t think it’s anything you have to focus on. I think it’s almost like when somebody will play with their hair. If it calms them down I’m fine with it, it doesn’t distract me and I don’t find it distracting them because they’re listening, they’re just playing with it in their hands.”