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block schedule and advisory!!


From: |||| (gosborne_at_TeacherArtExchange)
Date: Sat Feb 16 2002 - 09:34:23 PST

>>Our administration keeps TALKING about putting our school on a block
schedule <<

We are on an alternating day block schedule.
We have six periods, but we are on a 90 min class schedule.
We have 3 classes per day and rotate that schedule daily.
We also have advisory class daily and a study/jag time, after the second
period of the day and it is weaved into the lunch block...each of those is
only 30 min.

Here's what our schedule looks like.
Monday: periods 1, 3, advisory, lunch, jag/study time, 5th period.
Tuesday: 2, 4, advisory, lunch, jag/study time, 6th period.
Wednesday: same as Monday.
Thursday: same as Tuesday
Friday: same as Monday

The next week Monday would start with Period 2, 4, it alternates
We have 67 advisory classes, covering all grade levels 10-11-12

Our lunch block schedule actually rotates with advisory/jag/lunch rotating
depending on the teacher. So some kids could have lunch/advisory/studytime
or studytime/lunch/advisory etc.

Our advisory lessons are planned by our counseling staff and sometimes
various teachers will pitch in, and we are given a weekly lesson plan
snapshot and also a comprehensive daily lesson plan. Teachers are not
responsible for detailed lesson planning for this period.

We do a senior project at our high school and our advisory is an excellent
time for giving kids information, working on their graduation portfolios
etc. We start our senior portfolio work in our sophomore year, so it's
ongoing. We also have grade level meetings during this time, grade level
competitions at this time, Speakers from all disciplines can come in during
this block and speak also, It's a very flexible time for us actually, and
teachers are not responsible for planning the advisory time. We can modify
if we want, but there is always a foundation plan for us to use.

Also, on Fridays, we switch to one hour late arrival for the kids, which
means our advisory/studytime block is deleted. so on Fridays our schedule
looks like this:
late arrival, period 1, period 3, lunch, period 5.
The kids come in one hour late(they love it): teachers come in regular time
and get an hour to have meetings, do planning, meet with kids that need
help(we love it)

When we first went to the block 90 minute block schedule, most teachers were
concerned. We did have staff workshops on teaching in a block schedule, so
that was beneficial. Now we are in our second year, and everyone is very
happy with the schedule.
I teach a video production and I love it, The kids love it too for any
art/lab class and wish it could be longer, I have many kids come back to my
video lab dor their studytime and lunch and work that too
....Most teachers in the other disciplines have made the adjustment also.
Nobody can really lecture for 90minutes, thats tough, so we do a lot of
group work activities etc. and it is very beneficial.
The initial reaction to the block schedule was 'eeek' but we all made the's just breaking the short period paradigm.

If you have any questions, send me an email at:

G. Osborne.
Emerald Ridge High School