Extended class unique way of learning

Published 1:42 pm Wednesday, July 29, 2009

The extended-learning schedule was introduced to Montevallo High School in 2006.

This means that instead of attending seven classes a day, students instead take eight classes, attending the first four on Mondays and Wednesdays, the other four on Tuesdays and Thursdays, and all eight classes on Friday.

The schedule is beneficial to students in many ways. Students not only graduate with more credits, they also have more time to study and do schoolwork, they have fewer supplies to carry from class to class, and the environment is more like that of a college. This schedule has been employed since my freshmen year in high school and I feel that it has maximized my learning experience.

Senior Kylie Stansell agrees.

“I think the extended-learning schedule is better all around. I think all the schools should convert to it,” she said.

Since students take eight classes instead of the traditional seven, not only can they take more electives, but they can graduate with a total of 32 credits (24 credits are required).

Also, students have more time to complete homework and more nights to study for tests. Classes meet every other day except for Friday, so students have two nights to complete work and study. There is also less homework because the teachers have longer to teach in class.

Any high school student can verify how heavy a backpack gets, but on extended-learning schedule, students only have to carry books and supplies for four classes.

The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that a backpack should weigh 10 or 15 percent of their body weight, but seven textbooks combined weigh more than 20 pounds. By carrying lighter backpacks, students are less likely to have back problems.

Extended-learning schedule can better prepare students for college.

Instead of taking 45- minute classes all day, students stay in class for an hour and 46 minutes, which is similar to a college class.

Katie Bitz will be a senior at Montevallo High School this fall.