Rliberni's Blog – Radical language

December 9, 2009

Will a longer school day/year increase student achievement? #edchat summary

Filed under: Edchat — rliberni @ 11:41 am
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6pm CET/ 12pm EST Edchat Summary

Last evening’s #edchat summary was another lively event with fast and furious discussion and lots of ideas, opinions and information shared as ever! This topic comes up often with teachers, learners and parents constantly struggling to fit all they have to do into a day and still have time to ‘stand and stare’.

I’m not sure there was a consensus, but the main points which recurred were:

  • Shouldn’t we be looking at the whole school day/year concept and decide if it is still a suitable model for the 21 century?
  • How would the extra hours/days be used – we don’t want/need more of the same
  • Use extra time for teacher development and learning
  • Consider year-round schooling
  • The importance of good discussion before considering change and involving all parties (parents, learners, teachers, admin, authorities)
  • The use of technology as away of extending learning beyond the school/college gates

What some participants had to say.

colonelb   –  @ShellTerrell Yes, but only if quality of learning improves along with it. #edchat
colonelb   –  I’m also wondering why we have to continue to think in terms of traditional school days and years. Progress as you learn. #edchat
clarkmusic   School day is already long, if you include homework. Retention might improve if year is broken up differently. #edchat
DeronDurflinger – #edchat I don’t know if the answer is a longer day/year, but we need to be more flexible in how we use our time.
kmadolf    –  Eistein’s def of insanity: Doing things the way we’ve always done them & expecting diff results. Longer school day/year fits def. #edchat
malcolmbellamy   –  p upils are better off with short bursts of quality than long periods of boredom #edchat
web20classroom   –  I believe many teachers would favor a long day or year if it meant more time for meaningful instruction… #edchat
bgillett   –  Learning needs to encompass more than just 7:30-2:30 each day. #edchat
cybraryman1   –  The real answer is what and how knowledge is being taught. The length of day & year is not the problem. #edchat
irasocol   –  @rliberni Only if it is a completely different school: architecturally, systematically, curricularly, assessmentally #edchat
kmadolf   –  Rather than lengthening day/year, should consider year-round schooling. #edchat
kylepace   –  @ShellTerrell Some teachers say they would be in favor of year round school with multiple 2-3 week breaks. Anyone doing this? #edchat
web20classroom   RT @colonelb:Im also wondering why we have to continue to think in terms of traditional school days and years.Progress as you learn. #edchat
andi1984   –   All the organisatorical stuff can be better discussed without wasting too much precious time. #edchat
esolcourses   –  @rliberni Not in favour of it. Don’t think a longer school day is the answer. IME, many kids struggle to maintain focus as it is #edchat
hadleyjf   –  #edchat Following the conversation with my 8th graders
SimpleK   –  @ShellTerrell We had year-round school here a few years ago. it was great. My son did much better with shorter more frequent brks #edchat
web20classroom   –  RT @bgillett: Learning needs to encompass more than just 7:30-2:30 each day. #edchat
edtechsteve   We need to prove we can use the time we NOW have right before we add a single minute #edchat
mtrump 12/8/2009 12:04 PM RT @ShellTerrell: Which do you prefer a longer day or year? #edchat – Neither
MatthiasHeil   –  Ideally, borders between “learning” and “holidays” should dissolve. #edchat
SErwin   I think we need to become more efficient. #edchat
kmadolf   Traditional model based on agrarian calendar – what a concept to design schools to fit THIS century’s realities. #edchat
sudam09   –  Eduation should not be a commercial activity and hence private participation should be discouraged. Govt should run the ed Instns. #edchat
tamaslorincz   Unfortunately in my neck of the woods the less time students spend at school the more they can learn ;-( #edchat
daveandcori   –  #edchat effective use of time is needed too. And, use technology to “extend the school day”
MrR0g3rs    –  @kylepace no! less physical time in school. schedule now is based on an ancient paradigm set up to protect sacred cows #edchat
irasocol   –  I favor 24/7 year-round secondary school buildings, but with student choice of hours-like unis-and lots of study/recreation options #edchat
tamaslorincz   –  The more I look at the damage we do to tyhe students the less I believe in schools.Schools should’ve redefinded themselves by now. #edchat
SErwin   –  I have gained more knowledge outside of my normal schooling than within. Ex – Why r we using twitter? Students must do same #edchat
kylepace   –  If e-learning for students isn’t a way to go, maybe e-learning PD for teachers to give more instructional time and less pull out? #edchat
EnglishProfi   –  @rliberni A longer school day/year would have to have more pay or more teachers. #edchat
evab2001   –  RT @ShellTerrell The problem with longer hrs is that children have less time with their families #edchat
iMrsF   –  RT @rliberni: How about virtual classrooms that offer options to kids/students after ‘school’? #edchat
cristinaluminea    –  RT @colonelb: “We can’t solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them.” Einstein #edchat

This is just a flavour. For the complete transcript see here

If you want stats on participation in #edchat see here

@hadleyjf  was participating with Grade 8 students and we look forward to her survey results on their opinions of #edchat (they liked the idea of 4 days of school followed by 3 days off and a shorter summer holiday)

@techmunoz  polled a middle school class (also watching – I think) and they preferred a longer day to changing the summer holiday

We also had some fabulous links provided – great information!

Links shared

socratech   –  Our charter network: http://www.kipp.org has been successful implementing longer school days: 7:00-5:00 everyday with Sat schools. #edchat
timesed   –  #edchat Much discussion in the UK has been about starting the school day *later* to suit teenagers’ body-clocks http://www.tes.co.uk/article.aspx?storycode=6018000
socratech   –  RT @PostSchools JAY MATHEWS school day is too short. If we’re serious about achievement, need more time. http://voices.washingtonpost.com/class-struggle/2009/12/why_cant_regular_schools_expan.html#edchat
elanaleoni   –  The Race to Nowhere talks about the issues we’ve talked about on #edchat. You can request a screening 4 your school. http://www.racetonowhere.com/
kylepace   –  RT @socratech: Tracking An Emerging Movement: A Report on Expanded Time Schools in America #edchat http://ow.ly/JXh8
ShellTerrell   –  I also believe stdts need to spend time away fr desks! Here are some ideas http://prestwickhouse.blogspot.com/2009/12/step-outside-of-classroom.html#edchat
timesed   –  @nothingfuture #edchat – Some historians think the link between agriculture and the school year is a myth, anyway http://bit.ly/5BNkPa
MrR0g3rs   –  @ShellTerrell i agree. we should use stuff like this from @mrrobbo http://mrrobbo.wordpress.com/2009/10/01/a-kinesthetic-reading-adventure/#edchat
frankcrawford   –  @ShellTerrell #edchat Online PD available (professional development link) here. http://www.ltscotland.org.uk/journeytoexcellence/
kmadolf    – @misterlamb Exactly! “Not knowing how to apply the knowledge is no knowledge at all.” http://theonlinecitizen.com/2009/11/why-i-prefer-canadas-education-system-world-ranking-or-not/ #edchat
TheoOliveira   i’m not sure if u guys know about, bu here’s go http://www.aft.org/pubs-reports/american_educator/summer2002/askcognitivescientist.html#edchat

New to Edchat?

If you have never participated in an #Edchat discussion, these take place twice a day every Tuesday on Twitter. Over 400 educators participate in this discussion by just adding #edchat to their tweets. For tips on participating in the discussion, please check out these posts!

More Edchat


If you’re new to hashtag discussions, then just show up on Twitter on any Tuesday and add just a few tweets on the topic with the hashtag #edchat.

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