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Flex time activities keep students engaged

Ike Gunderson, Online Editor

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This year flex time was implemented and the focus is equity and students finding their passion. The overwhelmingly positive response raises the question: What are kids doing during flex time? The Pioneer Press recently released an article which dives into this issue and describes what the most popular activities are.

Every teacher is required to run an activity once a week in flex time and students go to flex time every Tuesday and Thursday. The 40-minute block takes away a total of 2 weeks worth of class time from each other class, so there must be some significant increase in stress and equity.

One new activity offered during flex time is yoga. Yoga meets every Thursday and is taught by English teacher Chelsea Dodds. Many studies show that it can help to reduce stress and increase productivity. Yoga gives students an opportunity to take advantage of all the benefits of yoga, while not missing any class time.

“The few people that I have coming every week are definitely craving it by the time Thursday comes around,” Dodds said. “After we have done yoga they feel better about their day or the week as a whole.”

Flex time reduces stress not only by adding time to participate in calming activities, but also to finish homework and retake tests. Retaking tests especially helps kids who either take the bus home or who participate in a sport after school. Biology teacher Andrew Weaver teaches all AP classes and realizes how important this extra time can be for some students.

Some kids, if you ride the bus or if you really struggle and really need the contact time, this is a great time for them.”

— Andrew Weaver

“I usually have 2 or 3 kids that will come in and make up a test, which is great,” Weaver said. “Some kids, if you ride the bus or if you really struggle and really need the contact time, this is a great time for them.”

For the kids that do not need any more time for academic support, they are encouraged to join a club. Many clubs have experienced a boost in members as a result of in-school meetings, such as video gaming club which regularly experiences 40 plus students attending.

“I think for the kids that want to go home right after school, but still have some incentive to join an activity for one reason or another may start coming to more activities because of flex time,” Shamus Boe said.

Flex time pushes students to expand their comfort zone and help stress and grades at the same time.

Dodds explained, “Flex time is a good way to explore new options and kids could be interested or could just try something if they wanted to.”

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8 Comments

8 Responses to “Flex time activities keep students engaged”

  1. Evelyn Young on January 10th, 2018 6:39 pm

    It was interesting to hear about some of the activities happening during flex time. I think that using quotes from more students would have been beneficial to show how students feel about the activities going on. Also the Pioneer Press article was mentioned but not much more was said about it. I enjoyed reading this article though and didn’t realize that we had yoga or just how much flex time was helping lower students stress. This was a well written article.

    [Reply]

  2. Joseph Blomquist on January 16th, 2018 1:22 pm

    The article had a lot of good information and strong quotes on how people feel about flex time. I also did not realize flex time lowers stress, which is helpful for all students to know

    [Reply]

  3. Jameson Stahl on January 16th, 2018 2:30 pm

    This story is interesting to me as a reader because it directly affects my student life and it gives me a little more insight on the thinking behind flex time. The thoughts of teachers was well written but thoughts from students could have been useful too. Overall a good article.

    [Reply]

  4. Abigail Begin on January 16th, 2018 10:13 pm

    This is a very well written piece and provides a lot of information. The quote used by Mr. Weaver was a very good one and related directly to the story However, I feel like this is an old topic and I would suggest making it more about how flex time is going so far, rather than what it is. We have had many stories about flex time but it would be cool to get student’s opinions or adult’s opinion on it.

    [Reply]

  5. Mackenzie Motz on January 16th, 2018 11:18 pm

    I really liked the way this article was structured. It was interesting to read about some of the different activities some kids do during flex and get quotes from teachers as well because as a student you kind of forget about the teachers point of view.

    [Reply]

  6. Daniel Schlenker on January 17th, 2018 7:28 am

    With all students affected by flex time, this story helps to cover the controversy of the topic by showing some of the structure and how students can use the time to benefit them.

    [Reply]

  7. Mason Wylie on January 17th, 2018 8:18 am

    I feel like this topic has been used too many times this year, but the article itself was written out well. I learned that teachers are required to do an activity every now and then. I liked how it was formatted and how it showed some of the activities that have been done during flex time.

    [Reply]

  8. Tess Schoenborn on January 17th, 2018 10:06 am

    I liked The podcast and how the teachers responded. The quotes were good and interesting. The topic is relevant and students and teachers have different opinions.

    [Reply]

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