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VI Международный конкурс научно-исследовательских и творческих работ учащихся
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Давыдова Д.А. 1
1МОУ гимназия №14
Даминова А.О. 1
1МОУ гимназия №14
Автор работы награжден дипломом победителя II степени
Текст работы размещён без изображений и формул.
Полная версия работы доступна во вкладке "Файлы работы" в формате PDF

Introduction

In spring 2017 there was a mania among teens all over the world. Everywhere one could see boys and girls with a strange thing in their hands. They spun it during conversations, while walking, eating and even at the lessons. This toy looked like a small propeller. This “propeller” became so popular that computer games, cartoons and songs about such a toy were created.

What is the name of the “propeller”? It is a spinner or a fidget spinner. Spinners gained great popularity first in the USA and then in many other countries. One version says that a spinner is a good device to help students concentrate on tasks and calm nerves. Another version considers this thing as a special tool for children with neurological disorders.

In May 2017 the demand for spinners was so huge that some factories producing mobile phone in China decided to switch to the production of spinners. Many Russian children and teens could buy such a device almost in every shop, near the underground and at stations.

But some parents and school teachers sounded the alarm. Children’s love for spinners had a negative impact on their behavior and school results. At that time a group of researches said that the toy, on the contrary, made children more aggressive and drew away their attention.

Spinners were very popular among my friends and classmates too. Many of them took fidgets to school and spun them at the lessons. It was a kind of relax. I wonder if there is a value of using such a toy. Is it so relaxing? Will the spinner influence my school results? Will it draw away my attention? Our research helps to find answers to these questions.

The object of this research work is a spinner. The subject of studying is influence of spinners on mental activity.

The purpose of this work is to find out whether the spinner is a helpful tool or not. For achievement of the goal it was necessary to solve some problems:

- to find out some information about spinners (when the spinner appeared, its author, advantages and disadvantages);

- to analyze schoolmates’ mental activity without spinner and with it;

- to generalize the facts and make a conclusion.

Work was carried out step by step:

• at a preparatory stage the information on the topic was collected;

• at the following second stage the analysis of collected information was carried out, all pupils completed questionnaires;

• at the third and final stage the conclusions were formulated, the results of works are issued.

When performing research the next methods were used: search of information, questionnaire survey, experiment, analysis and comparison.

Hypothesis of our work is “Spinners have a bad influence on our mental activity”.

This work will be useful and interesting because it will allow pupils to pay attention to the fact that fashionable things are not always good and useful. We hope that people will be very attentive to what they buy and use in everyday life.

The structure of the work includes introduction, two chapters with conclusion, summary, bibliography and appendix.

The first chapter is a theoretical part containing the main information about spinners.

The second part is practical. There are results of survey and our conclusion.

In summary we answer if our hypothesis is confirmed, list the results of the practical part.

Bibliography is the list of books, newspapers and websites that we used collecting information.

The appendix includes some materials that we used in the practical part. They are texts and pictures for survey, results of the survey.

Chapter I. Theoretical Part

1.1. “Spinner”. What is it?

The word “spinner” is a derivative from the verb “to spin” that means a movement of an object in a circular motion [1]. Some decades ago there were students at school who spun triangular rulers around their index or middle fingers. Modern spinners are very similar to those rulers.

A fidget spinner (or a hand spinner) is a funny stress relieving rolling toy [2]. The fidget spinner is designed to spin with little effort. A person holds the center pad while the toy spins.There is no battery in it. There are some elements of a spinner such as:

- a ball-bearing – a round ring with small balls inside. These balls can be ceramic or metal. A spinner usually has one ball-bearing but sometimes there can be several ones. In that case the central ball-bearing performs the general function, others are decorative;

- a cover that is put on a ball-bearing. Its function is to hold the toy during the process of spinning;

- a multi-lobed (typically two or three) body. The body is a flat structure made from plastic, brass, titanium, copper, aluminum or stainlesssteel.

Material and design of a ball-bearing influence the duration of spinning and type of vibration and noise.

1.2. The origin of spinners

We could find some versions about the origin of spinners. The first comes to the time of the World War II. A Ukrainian mental hospital had to be evacuated to the east of the country. It is difficult to imagine that days: planes, cries, boom of guns, explosions. At such a situation morbid people became panic-stricken. They didn’t listen to anybody, tried to hide. One of the doctors saw a box with ball-bearings. He gave those ball-bearing to the patients showed how to spin such a strange thing. It was like a miracle! The patients spun bearings and accepted every word. They were interested in the process of spinning and let doctors evacuate them (3).

The second version is more popular. It says that Catherine Hettinger, a woman living in the Orlando area, is the inventor of the fidget spinner. In the interview to The New York Times she said that the idea of creating such a toy had come to her in Israel. There she saw Arabic boys throwing stones to policemen. Catherine decided to make a calming toy whose purpose would be to help child’s energy escape. But in the interview to The Guardian she told that she created that toy for her daughter who was suffering from a syndrome of muscles’ dystonia. Catherine had no time to play with the child, so she made a toy from a newspaper and an adhesive tape. Some of Catherine’s neighbors and friends got interested in that toy, and she decided to produce it at home and sell at the trade fair. Then Catherine Hettinger applied for a patent for “a spinning toy” – a round thing made from soft plastic. Unfortunately, she didn’t succeed in it.

There is one more version concerning the origin of the strange toy. In May 2017 Bloomberg News article showed that Hettinger was not the inventor of the fidget spinner, and Hettinger agreed. In an interview appearing on May 4, 2017 on NPR (National Public Radio), Scott McCoskery described how he invented a metal spinning device in 2014 to cope with his own excitement during meetings and conference calls. In response to requests from an online community, he began selling the device he called the Torqbar online.

Nowadays the patent status of the various fidget spinners on the market is still unclear (4).

1.3. Types of spinners

The creativity used in the manufacturing of fidget spinners is great. Fidget spinners with cool designs are more unique and attractive. There is a great variety of spinning toys. The most popular types are following:

- a single spinner. The simplest construction of a spinner consists of a small frame-bar with a ball bearing in the centre. The advantage of such a construction is its compactness as it is much smaller than a typical tri-spinner. Notwithstanding the size such kind of a toy can spin for 5 minutes!

- a tri-spinner is themost common type of spinners. It looks like a trefoil with a ball-bearing in the centre. Ball-bearings are often put on each petal for balance and its weight. Such type of spinners is made of plastic, metal, wood or even of skin. The designs vary from common propellers to ninja stars;

- a quad-spinner consists of four petals and a ball bearing in the centre. It is more balanced and smoother than a tri-spinner. The disadvantage is its bid size and weight;

- a wheel spinner. Lack of any petals and presence of an additional circle make the construction look like a real wheel;

- an exotic spinner. Exotic spinners are difficult to classify. Some of them are triangle, round or asymmetric. Others can include small metal balls inside their construction. Such spinners have something in common – it is their originality. Some exotic spinners can be tiny (the size of a coin), huge or look like a weapon. Many exotic spinners are made of exotic metals such as mokume gane, damask steel, zirconium, tungsten and others [5];

- a hand-made spinner can be made of different materials such as paper, cardboard, wood, plastic bottle cap and even from LEGO. The main part of a hand-made spinner is a ball-bearing.

- a spinner made on a 3D printer can be of any type mentioned before. It takes for about half an hour to print and make such a spinner. You can find a great amount of drawings in the Internet and join different groups in Facebook and Vkontakte. Their members share ideas and print spinners according to the buyers’ wishes.

1.4. The advantages of using such a toy

Is the spinner good or bad for children? Experts have different opinions of the question. Some experts believe that spinners are very useful for people with ADHD (Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder) and anxiety disorder. A fidget spinner seller on Amazon writes its products are “ideal for people trying to quit nail biting, smoking, leg shaking, and all types of attention disorder issues.” Some parents claim that these little gadgets may just keep their kids off the electronics.

At the same time others affirm that such toys distract our attention and can be harmful and dangerous.

We try to find both advantages and disadvantages of spinners.

Telling about advantages of a toy we can talk about:

1. Benefits for body:

- motor development that is actual for children and teens;

- development of hands and fingers that can help people recover after having a hand trauma or wearing a plaster cast;

- visual stimulation. Fidget spinners are predictable and that is what our eyes like. They’re calming to the eye.

2. Benefits for mental condition/psychological state:

-stress coping;

-it can help give up bad habits, concentrate attention. If a child has a problem with anxiety or ADHD, and if he/she is always biting nails or scratching skin, then buying a fidget spinner might not be such a bad idea. Fidgeting will be able to help focus and pay attention to the surroundings;

- a toy chosen in according with a person’s interests has a positive impact on an owner’s mood;

- while you are spinning the toy, your right brain (responsible for creativity) is developing;

- social activity. Even though fidget spinners can be a distraction, kids just love being ‘’in’’ on something. They like to be a part of something that’s going on and something that involves their friends (6).

1.5. The disadvantages of spinners

The rapid rise of popularity in 2017 caused the debates on this issue. In July 2017 Gennadiy Onishchenko, a Russian government official, proposed to ban using and selling spinners. Many parents and teachers gave the next evidence for their discontent.

Children used spinners everywhere. They took toys to school, exchanged and even sold them. As the result of constant using of spinners by students many schools in the USA banned such a toy. Teachers say that it draws away students’ attention from the process of education. But that’s not the end of it. Kids love banned things. That’s why they were trying to hide them, or find other ways to get around the rules. Naturally, this led to even more distraction, and it caused children not to focus at all or not to learn in school.

The fidget spinner is made of small parts. If it breaks down, there’s a big chance that a kid will try to put it in the mouth or hurt himself/herself. 11-years-old boy from Australia, as his mother said, almost lost his eye when tried to make some tricks with the spinner and couldn’t catch it. The toy fell down and hurt his eye. So children under 8 years are not recommended to use a spinner.

There’s another important thing about these spinners. Spinners that are produced everywhere. They usually don’t come with instructions, or any information about which company produced them. This means such a toy may be made of dangerous materials. European Customs Office regularly takes away hundred thousands of toys every week. These toys are usually from China. Giving a child a toxic toy is not something that any of us want to do (6).

Summary for Chapter I

The appearance of an interesting toy caused the birth of a new trend among children, teens and even adults. The toy’s popularity was stunning. Songs and computer games about spinners were created in 2017. Spinners became a must-have toy.

There is a great variety of such a toy. It can be made from different materials, can be different shape and colour.

There is still no answer who invented the spinner. Many people say “the mother” of spinner is Catherine Hettinger. She made it to help her daughter who was suffering from a syndrome of muscles’ dystonia. This is one of the advantages of spinners. Some people are sure that spinners are dangerous, that they have only disadvantages and should be banned.

Chapter II. Practical part

2.1. Research “Influence on mental activity”

As it was mentioned earlier, the hypothesis of our work is “Spinners have a bad influence on our mental activity”. To prove this hypothesis we made a survey consisting of three parts. Thirty students and teachers from gymnasium 14 took part in our survey.

The purpose of the first task was to study the influence of a spinner upon visual memory. A person should find differences between two pictures for thirty seconds. Then he/she should do the same but using the spinner.

Having done the research we can say that the spinner does not have strong influence upon visual memory (appendix 1). The participants can be divided into three almost equal groups: whose result with the spinner didn’t change (9 participants), who could find more differences with the spinner (9 participants) and the last group whose result became worse (12 participants). We can see that in this situation spinner distracted attention but the difference in number is small.

1. Influence of spinners upon visual memory

The second task helped to notice how the spinner influence aural memory. We enumerated five words on the topic and our examinees repeated them. After this we did the same task using the spinning toy.

The result of this survey on the contrary shows us that the spinner has a good impact on our aural memory (appendix 2). The smallest group of participants (7 people) is that whose results did not change. 11 persons worsened their results. The third group with better result includes 12 participants. It appears probable that such a toy actually helps to relax and concentrate on what you are doing. Nevertheless the difference is insignificant (only one person).

2. Influence of spinners upon aural memory

The last task checked focusing while reading. A person should read the text for a minute and then answer the questions (true-false). The next text was read with the spinner.

We paid attention to number of read words and right answers (appendix 3). The diagram shows us that the spinner distracted attention and the participants had the worse results with the spinner than without it. The difference between the groups is significant now (if we compare the results with the previous tasks).

3. Influence of spinners upon focusing while reading

After the last study we decided to find out the reason why some participants had better results. An idea came to our mind. We thought that if a person often used the spinner, it would help him concentrate and get good results. That is why we asked three questions (appendix 4) to prove our thought and could see the following. In most cases our participants seldom use a spinning toy. There are even two persons who have never used spinners. In spite of it they showed good results. While talking about frequency of using the spinner, participants were divided into three equal groups (they had been using it for a week, for a month and for a couple of months). As to the reason of spinning a toy we can see a big group without any purposes. Only 3 people use it to relax and one person – not to think about problems.

Summary for Chapter II

There are two opinions about spinners. Some people are for using such a toy, others are against it. We carried out a survey to see which group is right.

In practice we could see that in most cases spinners really distracts our attention. People try to untwist the toy. As the result they look aside the task. But in one task the spinner was useful. We may make an assumption that such kind of a toy becomes a real helper when you have to rely on your aural memory.

There were some people whose results with a spinner were better than without it. We had an idea that this was because of constant using of spinners. After the last survey we found out that the result didn’t depend on frequency and duration of using. The participants may have shown good results because of their individual peculiarity.

According to the last question about the purposes of using spinners we suppose that most modern teenagers are affected by fashion. They buy and use the things that are popular now.

Conclusion

In our work we tried to study the spinner phenomenon fully. Having considered and having analyzed the works and articles of various authors devoted to such a toy, we found out the structure of a spinner, three versions of its origin and studied some types of this popular toy. In theoretical part we analyzed the attitude of teachers and parents towards the issue. Also, in this work we consecrated the main advantages and disadvantages of the fidget spinner.

In practical part of our wok we gave information about the survey: described all the materials and actions, made an assumption and conclusion.

In this work we tried to analyze the influence of the fashionable device upon our mental activity and make some conclusions. Thus, we revealed that the fidget spinner distracts our attention when our goal is to read the text and then answer the questions and to use visual memory. With regard to the listening recognition we can tell that in our case this strange toy served such a function when it helps concentrate on the task.

Our goals were reached. We considered:

1. all in all spinners have bad impact on mental activity;

2. if a person wants to use the device, it’s better to spin it while listening;

3. the duration of using the fidget spinner doesn’t influence the result (if the spinner will be useful or not).

Proceeding from our research, we can tell that it depends on a personality – if the spinner will help you to relax and concentrate or on the contrary will damage your results.

In the future we would like to study more students and teachers for better visualization.

Bibliography (websites)

1. The definition of the word “spin”

https://dic.academic.ru/searchall.php?SWord=Spin&from=en&to=ru&did=&stype=0

2. The definition of the word “spinner”

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fidget_spinner

3. The article “The usage of spinners during the World War II”

http://ogointeresno.ru/kak-ispolzovali-spinnery-vo-vremya-vojny/

4. The article “The origin of spinners”

https://fidget-spin.ru/istoriya-poyavleniya-spinnera/

5. The article “Kind of spinners”

http://dr-znai.com/vidy-spinnerov.html

6. The article “Advantages and disadvantages of spinners”

https://xn--80adde7arb.xn--p1ai/news/society/7346/

Appendix 1

Results of Task 1. Influence upon visual memory (“Find differences”)

Name, Surname

Form

Result without spinner

Result with spinner

1

Daria Olegovna Merkina

teacher

8

8

2

Gusein Musaev

6B

6

7

3

Polina Kozlova

10A

9

9

4

Maria Maytnikova

10A

9

9

5

Natalia Bokova

9B

8

7

6

Valeria Volkova

7A

6

8

7

Ivan Leonov

7A

10

6

8

Denis Zikov

6A

8

6

9

Nikita Anisimov

6A

6

8

10

Aleksandr Pavelov

5A

7

5

11

Ekaterina Pavelova

10A

11

7

12

Milena Kondaeva

8A

9

8

13

Inna Kondaeva

8A

7

10

14

Maria Torbova

6A

8

10

15

Alisa Chernoskova

6A

9

9

16

Anna Aleksandrova Kryuchkova

teacher

8

11

17

Polina Kosheleva

7A

7

7

18

Rustam Ravilievich Daminov

teacher

7

7

19

Julia Albertovna Kiselyova

teacher

8

8

20

Anastasia Olegovna Daminova

teacher

10

8

21

Anastasia Alekseevna Shulga

teacher

8

7

22

Valeria Osipova

6A

3

2

23

Anna Vadimova Rakhmanova

teacher

6

9

24

Damir Chebilaev

7A

7

5

25

Andrey Smirnov

5A

7

7

26

Aleksandra Zaytseva

5A

8

8

27

Tatiana Cherikova

6B

7

6

28

Matvey Grishakov

5B

7

9

29

Daria Davydova

6A

7

9

30

Anna Davydova

teacher

9

8

Appendix 2

Results of Task 2. Influence upon aural memory

Name, Surname

Form

Result without spinner

Result with spinner

1

Daria Olegovna Merkina

teacher

3

4

2

Gusein Musaev

6B

3

4

3

Polina Kozlova

10A

3

2

4

Maria Maytnikova

10A

1

3

5

Natalia Bokova

9B

4

3

6

Valeria Volkova

7A

2

3

7

Ivan Leonov

7A

3

4

8

Denis Zikov

6A

1

3

9

Nikita Anisimov

6A

2

2

10

Aleksandr Pavelov

5A

2

3

11

Ekaterina Pavelova

10A

2

1

12

Milena Kondaeva

8A

3

3

13

Inna Kondaeva

8A

2

2

14

Maria Torbova

6A

3

3

15

Alisa Chernoskova

6A

3

2

16

Anna Aleksandrova Kryuchkova

teacher

2

3

17

Polina Kosheleva

7A

3

4

18

Rustam Ravilievich Daminov

teacher

2

3

19

Julia Albertovna Kiselyova

teacher

5

5

20

Anastasia Olegovna Daminova

teacher

5

5

21

Anastasia Alekseevna Shulga

teacher

8

7

22

Valeria Osipova

6A

3

4

23

Anna Vadimova Rakhmanova

teacher

3

3

24

Damir Chebilaev

7A

3

2

25

Andrey Smirnov

5A

4

3

26

Aleksandra Zaytseva

5A

2

1

27

Tatiana Cherikova

6B

4

4

28

Matvey Grishakov

5B

2

1

29

Daria Davydova

6A

3

1

30

Anna Davydova

teacher

5

4

Appendix 3

Results of Task 3. Influence upon focusing (Reading)

Name, Surname

Form

Result without spinner

(quantity of words/right answers)

Result with spinner

(quantity of words/right answers)

1

Daria Olegovna Merkina

teacher

122/3

106/3

2

Gusein Musaev

6B

94/3

99/2

3

Polina Kozlova

10A

142/4

121/4

4

Maria Maytnikova

10A

117/4

116/4

5

Natalia Bokova

9B

98/3

94/2

6

Valeria Volkova

7A

74/3

71/3

7

Ivan Leonov

7A

119/3

111/2

8

Denis Zikov

6A

132/2

140/4

9

Nikita Anisimov

6A

60/4

120/2

10

Aleksandr Pavelov

5A

100/2

90/4

11

Ekaterina Pavelova

10A

111/4

123/3

12

Milena Kondaeva

8A

121/3

122/2

13

Inna Kondaeva

8A

107/2

96/3

14

Maria Torbova

6A

125/4

129/5

15

Alisa Chernoskova

6A

168/3

179/4

16

Anna Aleksandrova Kryuchkova

teacher

100/4

107/3

17

Polina Kosheleva

7A

130/3

138/4

18

Rustam Ravilievich Daminov

teacher

88/2

90/3

19

Julia Albertovna Kiselyova

teacher

205/7

200/5

20

Anastasia Olegovna Daminova

teacher

187/4

197/5

21

Anastasia Alekseevna Shulga

teacher

100/2

87/1

22

Valeria Osipova

6A

169/6

142/4

23

Anna Vadimova Rakhmanova

teacher

122/2

123/1

24

Damir Chebilaev

7A

170/3

110/4

25

Andrey Smirnov

5A

86/3

132/3

26

Aleksandra Zaytseva

5A

90/1

62/2

27

Tatiana Cherikova

6B

106/3

118/2

28

Matvey Grishakov

5B

101/2

118/2

29

Daria Davydova

6A

102/2

91/1

30

Anna Davydova

teacher

172/4

168/2

Appendix 4

Results of survey (participants whose results with the spinner became better)

 

Question

Variant a/ number of answers

Variant b/ number of answers

Variant c/ number of answers

Variant d/ number of answers

1

How often do you use a spinner?

never/2

seldom/8

often/1

always/0

2

How long have you been using it?

a week/4

a month/3

a couple of months/4

I’m still using it/0

3

Your purpose of using a spinner is to …

relax/3

not to think about problems/1

concentrate attention/0

I have no purpose/7

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