Landon Ludlow

Block scheduling has shown a number of benefits for students and staff.

Landon Ludlow, Reporter

Block scheduling at Seminole is only a year old, but it has already provided countless benefits for students and staff. he new schedule was implemented at the beginning of the 2015-2016 school year after some experimentation with new scheduling the year before. For underclassmen, block is the norm, but juniors and seniors have experienced both systems, and most have strong opinions one way or the other.

According to many Noles, one of the most prevalent benefits of block scheduling for students is the fact that they only have to do homework for half of their classes on Tuesdays and Wednesdays. This gives students a short break from certain subjects, as well as teaching time-management skills; students can spread their work over two days instead of just one.

“I don’t have to worry about getting all my homework done in one day,” senior James Nguyen said. “It really helps decrease my stress levels.”

Another major perk of the block schedule is the flexibility it gives teachers. In Seminole’s older schedule, early dismissal on Wednesdays led to classes that were too short to teach a full lesson. This greatly hindered the productivity of the learning environment; students didn’t have enough time to complete certain activities in one class period. With the new block schedule, teachers have the freedom to add more time-consuming activities to their curriculums without worrying about dividing them between two separate days.

This benefit is especially evident in the science department; instructors like physics teacher Amber Morgan can assign more complex labs, and students can finish them in a single period.

“Block days are great for doing labs that take a good bit of set-up and breakdown,” Morgan explained. “Before, a lot of time was wasted in the setup, and [students] couldn’t concentrate on what it was they were doing, rather than just putting it together. I think having the time immediately after data collection to examine the data is definitely worthwhile.”

Block scheduling also allows for the Pow-Wow period every Wednesday. This is used for homework, relaxing, and Patti Boggs’ renowned Pow-Wow videos. In these videos, she teaches students a wide range of different lessons to better students both academically and socially.

“It’s the one time every week where we’re all hearing the same message,” Boggs remarked. “I think, if nothing else, I get to represent the love that all of the teachers have for their kids, because I don’t think they get as much of an opportunity to blatantly tell them how great they are. I get to speak for everybody on that.”
Obviously, Seminole and its students have been successful without block day for over a century. However, this new schedule has already shown significant benefits for teachers and students alike, and even more are bound to come. Like it or not, block days are likely here to stay.