The school year of 2016-2017 kicked off with a variety of new additions in the school–a new coffee bar, a changed lunch room layout, etc. However, having a hot coffee and a piece of sushi are not the only changes to the LFHS community. Block schedules have been implemented into all teachers and student’s schedules. With Monday’s, Tuesday’s, and Friday’s starting at 8:15 and Wednesday’s and Thursday’s beginning at 9:00, the average student or teacher at LFHS is on a collision course with change from their old habits from a year ago. Emotions seem to be positive and heads seems to be held high with the first week of the new block schedule in the rear view mirror. Students seem to be enjoying the added time to classes on the Blue and Gold Days.
Students have mentioned that it gives them more time to focus and “get homework done and have less stress, especially if you’re in a sport,” said Senior William Murphy, who is currently involved in Cross Country.
Time seems to be the most manipulated variable in the new schedule when it comes to lesson planning and getting information across to students. With each class getting an hour and twenty minute block once a week it “helps [students] learn with the time added to each period, rather than cramming the same amount of information in half the time,” added Junior Joe Chamberlain.
Students now have the time to focus more on a specific curriculum with the longer blocks on the Gold and Blue Days, increasing their productivity. More time to do homework, understand a lesson, and get help from a teacher, the block schedule seems to be a benevolent change in LFHS student life.
However, students are not the only affected LFHS residents. Teachers, whether they are young and new or have been here for nearly twenty years or more, have been affected greatly by the block schedule. Whether it be lesson planning or portioning chemicals for a science lab, a fluctuating schedule makes for a difficult effort in teaching a curriculum. Nonetheless, teachers are thrilled with the block schedule. When it comes to classes in the Science Department, “the new schedule lends itself really nicely to Science because of all the labs we do; it also is really nice because teachers have time to collaborate and students have built in time to get help,” discussed science teacher Dr. Ryan Abrams.
Some teachers, such as English teacher Mr. Mark Osing, feel, “rushed with the forty five minute blocks, but I mostly joked around with extra five minutes in the old schedule”. Mr. Osing also added “ the block schedule is set up to give [teachers] prep time for class so it makes the lesson planning easier.”
Both students and teachers appear to enjoying the new schedule and welcome the change it brings. In a year such as this–one marked with change and new ideas–the positive benefits have seemed to calm any apprehension that was built over the summer months.