Monday, February 14, 2011

Seriously. The Next Five Weeks Can Be Tough

As I mentioned in class today, the next five weeks can be pretty rough for students, both due to our schedule and due to the content in your various classes.

First, let's look at the schedule for Algebra for the next five weeks:
  • This week we meet for 2.5 days (PLC day on Wednesday, furlough day on Friday).
  • Next week we meet for 3 days (Presidents' Day on Monday).
  • The next week after that we meet for 3 days (Parent-Teacher Conferences Thursday night, no school on Friday).
  • The next week we only meet two days, and one of those is a shortened class (due to CSAP, we meet Monday afternoon for a shortened class and Friday regular time).
  • Then the fifth week we finally have a full week (four days of Algebra), but it's the week before Spring Break which means some of you are likely to miss toward the end of the week.
With all of those disruptions to our schedule, it can be very hard to stay on track (and that's assuming you don't get sick/miss class for any reason).

Second, the content. In Algebra we'll be learning about polynomials, including factoring, which is a topic that is typically tricky for many students. We'll also be taking our midterm just before Spring Break. In your other classes teachers will also likely be trying to finish up units before Spring Break.

When you put these together it often turns into a very rough five weeks for students, particularly for freshmen who haven't been through it before (in high school, anyway). You really, really, really need to focus and stay on top of things over the next five weeks. If you do, you'll be able to enjoy Spring Break and come back refreshed and ready to learn for the remainder of the school year. If you don't, you'll end up very stressed, your grades are likely to go down (as will your enjoyment of Spring Break), and most importantly your learning will suffer.

So make a plan for how you are going to stay focused and on top of things. Be sure to come in for help when you need it (not just my class, but all of your classes), or if you just need to talk. And help each other out; remember, Warriors always take care of one another (and themselves). This is an excellent time to put that into practice.

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