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Old 09-09-2011, 08:39 AM
 
20,793 posts, read 52,424,731 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by haggardhouseelf View Post
I had no idea how insightful and interesting this thread would become! I really appreciate everyone who has replied. We are waiting to hear back about the partial scholarship. I have applied for a few jobs, too. So wish me luck. Meanwhile, I have been researching other smaller public high schools in our area. This current school has over 1500 students and I'm not sure if I mentioned before but they just had to lay off 8 teachers due to budget issues. This is supposedly the number two public high school in the state of Oregon but honestly I think it has gotten too big for its britches...

It's not so much the block scheduling that we find ridiculous - though we aren't a fan - it's the no fourth period class issue and the inconcistencies regarding the core classes. The school has other issues, too but that's another thread!

Oregon schools were wonderful for elementary and middle school... but our experience with high school has been a real eye opener.
Maybe that is the problem--but not because they are too big but because they are too small? You do have to have a certain student body to offer a selection of classes. Our school has 2200 kids and we are one of the smaller "big" high schools around. It's a good number and allows a LOT of course offerings. In our old school there were only about 800 kids and courses were VERY limited--Chemistry and Physics were only offered every other year, for example. Here we have 13 sections of AP Chemistry.
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Old 09-09-2011, 02:33 PM
 
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So I've called every single public high school in our city and they all have some form of block scheduling. Some do a m/w/f and t/th type of block schedule where you get 8 classes in, some do a thing where you take 4 classes on m/w and 4 other classes t/th and then on Friday you take all your 8 classes for a shorter time period. Some do the same sort of 4 periods per day every day sort of block schedule that our son has but instead of four terms per year they break it up into three and follow a trimester school year calendar.

Unfortunately we didn't qualify for the partial scholarship to the private school we were considering. Hubby makes too much money and ( and this makes me shake my head and wonder what the heck? ) evidently they feel we contribute too much to our retirement accounts. Isn't that odd? And the admissions lady told me that if/when I do go to work ( I started job hunting because I know private school is $$$) that even if we had qualified for anything the money I earn working would mess us up. So... we are still looking for alternatives...

I have inquired with my son's school to see about being enrolled in two public schools concurrently ( I think that is the right word? "At the same time"?) If that is an option he can take the core classes that they won't give him online through K12 Virtual Academy - a free accredited public school that many homeschoolers in our area use.

What a mess. And to top things off my internet broke so I'm having to rely on my dinky Android phone. Itty bitty keyboard with itty bitty webpages to read. lol
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Old 09-12-2011, 11:31 AM
 
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Ack. Oregon does not allow dual enrollment.
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Old 09-12-2011, 11:52 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by haggardhouseelf View Post
Ack. Oregon does not allow dual enrollment.
Look up and see if they offer Dual enrollment that counts for high school and COLLEGE credit. Most states have something like this. It allows you to take core classes at a college (most states it would be the community college, here it is through the 4 year colleges) that count for both high school and college credits. Usually they are only open to juniors and seniors but something to keep in mind for the next two years. If you have that option he can take those classes and be better off. Here the classes are free, other states there are minimal charges.
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Old 09-12-2011, 01:18 PM
 
Location: Home, Home on the Front Range
21,067 posts, read 15,255,809 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lkb0714 View Post
Block scheduling can be an amazing learning environment.

My school is on an A/B (not half year) double block schedule and have been for over 20 years. I think we were one of the first schools in the country to adopt it. Our teachers are all trained and supported for differentiated instruction in every period so our kids are engaged from the beginning of the period to the end. For example, on a typical day, we do 10 mins of bellwork and review, 20 mins of lecture, 20 mins of lab, 10 mins of discussion of lab in framework of lecture, 15 mins of group work on problems, and 5 mins of closure.

Every teacher I know who has been trained, and every student in our school, really gets alot out of our a/b block schedule. I would not go back to a 40 minute period for anything.
I agree.
I am a big proponent of block scheduling and as noted above, good teachers will find ways to keep their students interested for the entire period. I feel that the longer periods allow more time for discussion and in-depth treatment of the subject at hand.

Too much of the shorter (43 minute) periods are taken up with getting the kids settled, taking attendance and packing up before the bell rings. How much actual instruction is taking place in that scenario - twenty minutes, maybe?
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Old 09-12-2011, 01:24 PM
 
Location: Home, Home on the Front Range
21,067 posts, read 15,255,809 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lovesMountains View Post
My son loved his block scheduling too He found the time involved in each class really allowed for a thorough understanding of the subject matter and interaction with his teacher and peers.

I simply don't understand some posters here saying that "kids can't concentrate that long" or "get bored". My son and his friends certainly were able to enjoy the longer classes
My grand-daughter does as well. She feels that it gives her the opportunity to really 'get' the subject and she has more of an opportunity to work at her own pace within that framework.

Anything that encourages teens to slow down and focus is all good as far as I'm concerned.
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Old 09-12-2011, 01:25 PM
 
Location: Home, Home on the Front Range
21,067 posts, read 15,255,809 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lkb0714 View Post
I have no idea why people think that either.

They are just in one 80 minute period instead of back to back 40 min ones. What is the difference?

Second, block schedule is NOT successful if the only instruction that occurs is lecture. Pure lecture isn't successful even in 40 minutes but generally traditional periods do not allow the time to transition into other types of instruction while still making clear connections to the rest of the class.

I am going to go make a block scheduling thread.
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Old 09-12-2011, 03:47 PM
 
5,945 posts, read 12,731,763 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by golfgal View Post
Look up and see if they offer Dual enrollment that counts for high school and COLLEGE credit. Most states have something like this. It allows you to take core classes at a college (most states it would be the community college, here it is through the 4 year colleges) that count for both high school and college credits. Usually they are only open to juniors and seniors but something to keep in mind for the next two years. If you have that option he can take those classes and be better off. Here the classes are free, other states there are minimal charges.
Thank you!!

I know this year three of his electives (computer classes) count for college credit at our coomunity college at no cost to us. I will definitely check into this more. I really appreciate you sharing this!
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Old 09-12-2011, 07:49 PM
 
Location: Brooklyn,NY
1,961 posts, read 4,162,695 times
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I had free periods when I was in school.
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