Rolling into Fall and Opinions on Modified Block Scheduling

By: Megha Bharadwaj

The Courtyard is now available to upperclassman & underclassman to enjoy during Lunch & Learn

As we roll into the beginning of November, I pondered how my fellow students and the staff members felt about the new schedule implemented this year. There was a lot of mixed opinions last year when administration revealed they would be implementing a rotating schedule. Personally, I was immensely surprised by how easy it was to adjust to the rotating schedule! Did others feel the same way? Read on to find out.

I interviewed Shannon Lambert (‘17) to get a student view. Shannon is heavily involved with life at Lenape from clubs, to tennis, to LDTV and I believed that being actively involved with school she would be able to give me a thorough insight in how the schedule change has affected her.

Megha Bharadwaj: How do you feel about the new schedule? Is it anything like you thought it would be?

Shannon Lambert:  For the most part, I am enjoying the new schedule, because it is a lot like college. I feel it will serve as a good transition for students. The teachers have longer class periods, so the lessons are not as rushed and the students have more time to do homework.

MB: I agree! Not having classes every day puts you a sense of responsibility on you, which is pretty crucial for college.


MB:Did it take a long time to adjust yourself or were you able to get used to it right away.

SL:  I think the new schedule was an adjustment for everyone, especially the students and teachers who have been here for a while. I am still getting used to the change, but I am growing to like it.

MB: How is the new schedule benefiting you?

SL: The new schedule is benefitting me because I have a little more time to do my work than I did last year and if I need to make up tests or meet with a teacher, I can do that during lunch and learn.

MB: That’s probably one of the things I like best about the schedule too. When lengthy assignments are given, students have a little more time to finish them and if they cannot get to the assignment one day because of other homework and activities, if the class doesn’t meet the day after they still have the next day to work on it!

SL: Exactly! Sometimes with tennis I am not able to complete all my work in one night and really need an extra day which this new schedule provides!

MB:What have you done with all this extra time in lunch & learn?

SL:  I have spent most of my lunch and learn meeting with clubs or teachers. I am in LTV and we hold all of our production meetings and rehearsals for the morning show during lunch. I typically don’t have a lot of time to sit down and eat with friends, which is the only downfall, but it does solve my issue of handling clubs and sports.

MB: Lunch is pretty crazy. I don’t believe I have eaten in the same room any consecutive day. But, as you said with club meetings although there isn’t much time to socialize with friends, it does free up a lot of time after school which is a huge plus.


MB:Are there any “changes” you would suggest to the new schedule?

SL: I would change how the science labs work. Once or twice a week, students lose half their lunch period and go to lab. This really interrupts people’s schedules and makes it hard for the teachers to meet with other students.

MB: When lab’s occur twice in one week for the same class it can get a little hectic! Especially if you have a club meeting before or after! Again I think this goes all the way back to how you answered the first question by saying the new schedules prepares students for college because the student is responsible for managing their time.

SL: Yes! You are in charge of knowing what meetings you have on which day and which ones you can or can’t make. Sometimes you have to sacrifice a club meeting to study for a test or finish an assignment or vice versa. The student is really in charge of shaping this time.

Students utilize Lunch & Learn time in the media center
Students utilize Lunch & Learn time in the media center

On the flip side, I talked to Jaime Fauver, media center specialist, to see her take on things as a staff member.

MB:As a faculty member how has the new schedule impacted your schedule?

JF:The new schedule has been a tremendous asset to the media center and our information literacy instruction.  It allows us to work more intensively with students and teachers with the longer periods.  

MB:How different/similar is the actual implementation of the schedule versus what you thought it would be like?

JF: It has actually been a lot easier than I imagined.  Having only 6 class periods meet per day has allowed for a greater focus on the classes in the media center.  Rather than being pulled in 8 or more directions throughout the day (with overlapping periods of the past, the media center sometimes had 12 or more classes we were “working with” during the day), I have been able to devote the necessary time and energy to each of the classes that do come to the media center for research.

MB:Did it take you a long time to adjust?

JF: I must admit that while I know which students/subjects are coming in at what time during the day, I still get a little confused about the PM wheel and the actual class numbers; however, the schedule has so many benefits and has greatly improved my instructional and support time with students and teachers so the adjustment has been worthwhile.

MB: I totally understand. I know which classes I have during the day but sometimes I will forget the order.

MB:How have you benefited from this new schedule?

JF: In addition to the benefits mentioned above, this schedule allows the media specialists to meet with teachers and departments to collaborate on new resources and projects more extensively due to common planning time that departments receive now.  Overall, this will make the media center programs and services more effective and help our students to graduate knowing how to access and use information ethically and effectively.

Students eat lunch in the media center as one of of several venues available to them
Students eat lunch in the media center as one of of several venues available to them

It was so interesting to see that most people adapted to the new schedule relatively quick! I believe the administration involved in implementing our new schedule did quite a wonderful job to make it so easy for both students and staff to adjust. Comment below on how you feel about the new schedule!