While Teachers Plan Students Snooze

Wednesday, Oct. 5, 2014.

8:30 a.m.

The upper school halls were empty.

Homerooms were dark.

The upper school student parking lot was nearly empty.

But even without students, upper school teachers already were hard at work in meetings focused on designing student projects that will cross different subject areas and grade levels.

“This meeting was very important because us teachers needed to find a time to come together and collaborate,” Assistant Principal Mr. Chance Reynolds said.  “There was a lot of positive feedback.  It was exciting for the teachers because there was so much to cover.  We really focused on how to help 21st Century learners. . . .  21st Century learners are problem solvers anything that can help the students out we need to do so that they can become better 21st Century learners.”

Teachers discussed projects ranging from Ebola to the Ancient Pyramids to recycling.

According to Social Studies Department Chair Mr. Michael Kelley, the proposed recycling project might involve students from both AP Geography and Environmental Science in not only studying recycling from different perspectives, but perhaps even coming up with new ideas to get people involved in recycling at Stratford.

Teachers from math, science, and social studies also discussed different ways to bring headlines into the classroom by studying Ebola, according to history teacher Mr. Chris Loomis.  Potential angles might include studying the disease itself in biology classrooms; performing regression analysis in math to plot out its future course; and social studies projects putting the disease in the context of international public health, West African history, government policymaking in the U.S.

“The meeting went very well.  There were a lot of great ideas put forth,” science teacher Mr. Ross Bridges said.

While teachers were busy planning, students reset their alarms or hit their snooze buttons.  Homeroom was rescheduled for 9:15 a.m., while seniors with sleep-in did not have to arrive on campus until the leisurely hour of 10:40 a.m.

“The late start happened to land right on the perfect day.  I had double study hall, and because of senior privileges I got to sleep in. I did not have to get to school until 10:35 because that is when we got out of our 1st period class.  This gave me even more time to sleep in,” senior Jack Harper said.

Stratford has lined up two more late starts during this school year.  The first one will be Jan. 28, and the second will be April 29.