Schools throughout the United States have been rapidly picking up block schedules in the past few years. As opposed to traditional scheduling, block schedules involve three to four periods of instruction per day. Class periods would generally last up to 90 minutes, and the schedule would have half of the classes one day and the rest the next, meaning a class would be attended every other day rather than every single day in a school week.
Block schedules certainly have their perks and limitations when it comes to their effectiveness. The Oracle Newspaper staff agrees that teachers receive lots of benefits when it comes to grading and instruction time.
“Teachers definitely have more time to focus on you and have more instructional time,” said Charlese Thybulle.
The teachers would have the ability to have more student one-on-one time, enabling them to further explain their lessons.
“I feel like teachers would get more breathing room,” said Elena Melikian.
The staff also acknowledged that a block schedule would better prepare students for typical college schedules, building up mental stamina to endure the longer and more spread out classes.
“Typically, when you’re a college student, you sign up to go to classes that you don’t have every single day. It makes it a bit easier when you’re transitioning,” said Melikian.
Although the block schedule may not inherently work for every high school class, most classes and students thrive in a more spread out schedule.
“Some classes do better with block schedules, like science or math. Language arts can be more difficult because there’s only so much you can do in an English class period,” said Taylor Snow.
Most English classes could probably delve deeper into vocabulary and literary definitions with the extra time or allow for students to have longer periods of time to write an essay.
“Sometimes you need more than one day to do a lab, it’d make it easier to do stuff like that in a science class,” said Thybulle.
Having a longer period in the day to work on a lab, would allow more time on other days to cover more concepts.
“Especially for languages, it helps kids get more fluent because they have more time to understand and digest the subject. The teacher can go more in-depth and help you understand it better,” said Thybulle.
The matter of responsibility does come into play. Students would need to rely heavily on a planner, as the extra day between classes could easily cause assignments to be forgotten.
“It really forces you not to procrastinate, because if you do forget your homework, you’re gonna end up trying to finish it during the day,” said Snow.
It puts a bit more of a burden on the student. They must make sure that everything is accounted for, which may be trickier when the same classes aren’t attended every day.
“It puts a lot of responsibility on the student, they have to keep track of everything and lots of different due dates,” said Thybulle.
Students’ attention spans could also become problematic, as the class is much longer, and it is easier to become distracted.
“For some students, it may be harder to pay attention in a ninety-minute class period,” said Melikian.
A block schedule could have many benefits for students, although it can be a lot harder or even burdensome for some with the more rigorous work that may come along with it. All in all, the staff concluded that sticking to the traditional eight-period schedule would be the best way to go, due to the stress and responsibilities that would pile up.
Zoya Rizwan // Staff Writer