Longer Learning Times – do they work?

[Views are my own and do not represent WEGC  ]

I was reflecting the other day about why it is I seem to be covering less content over a school year, with increasingly tight deadlines, despite having reduced the number of credits on offer. There seem to be several possibilities:

  1. My teaching has got worse?
  2. The students are not as capable?
  3. More time is being wasted/lost with “out of class” activities?
  4. Students are less productive?
  5. Time for the subject has been reduced (a little anyway)?
  6. False sense of security – thinking I have more time than I do…
  7. 90/100 minute lessons rather than 50/60 minutes?

At this stage I am thinking 90/100 minute lessons is the most likely candidate. I find students concentration lapses after 45 minutes at most… even with variety of activities, mid lesson breaks, free Pepsi (just kidding).  When they are away for one day they miss the equivalent of two lessons rather than only one lesson, this makes it hard to catch up. Then again maybe I am wrong about this and there is some other reason.)

Anecdotally I hear from teachers that have moved to other schools that they find 50/60 minutes more productive, but I have no evidence as such… Maybe this can be subject to a small “teacher inquiry” at some stage.

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