Parents

Kids are losing out as we lose our shared landline phones at home

With the rise of cellphones and the decline of landlines, we've gained a lot. We now have the ability to easily communicate from almost anywhere and a wealth of added features at our fingertips that our old home-only phones never offered.

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Here's what kids learned back in the days when a family shared a house phone

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Here's what kids learned back in the days when a family shared a house phone

Play Video - 1:07

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And, of course, we no longer have to share a line with every other member of the household.

But that last perk might actually be a drawback for kids.

As a new article in the Wall Street Journal highlights, children once learned important lessons on that curly-corded family phone.

MORE: Pediatricians' new warning: Limit children's exposure to cellphones

Christopher Hall / Shutterstock / Christopher Hall
Old well used retro style rotary telephon. Retro filter applied.; Shutterstock ID 402976186; PO: today.com; Other: claudia

For instance, the old home phone was where kids mastered the art of the polite greeting, learned to take messages, overcame conversational shyness and if they wanted to use it at all, they had to be willing to take turns and share with family members.

MORE: How cell phones are affecting families — and what to do about it

But the lessons weren't limited to those.

Communications consultant Tracy Kurschner told the publication that she learned to spell her last name as a young child by listening to her mother address callers.

"She’d say, ‘Hello, this is Mrs. Zajackowski, Z-A-J-A-C-K-O-W-S-K-I,’” Kurschner explained. "People were just shocked that I knew how to spell my name by age 3."

For more examples of how old landline habits helped — and for a dose of phone-based nostalgia — read more at the Wall Street Journal.

Follow Ree Hines on Twitter.

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