PATRIOT TIME: On Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays (during the time period of Teacher Advisory on Monday) we hold Patriot Time. There are six possible places where students go during this time (constantly changing):
- CONCEPT MASTERY (assigned): Teachers give short formative assessments following instruction to identify students who are not gaining mastery. These students are immediately assigned to Concept Mastery (CM) class where they are re-taught the missed concept before they get too far behind. This class is focused on helping the assigned students gain mastery in a specific concept (It is not a "catch up on homework" time). Providing CM is the primary purpose of Patriot Time.
- TUTORIALS (assigned or optional where students choose to come): This is for students who understand the concepts but, for one reason or another, are behind on getting their work done. A Tutorial session could be a review for an upcoming test, a time with a teacher to catch up after illness or vacation, a chance to get extra one-one-one help, or a time for a group of students to work together on a group assignment under the supervision of the teacher, etc. These sessions can be mandatory where their planner is stamped, or optional where the students just show up at the Tutorial.
- TESTING CENTER: We acknowledge that students learn at different rates and should be offered multiple opportunities to show mastery. Therefore, we are moving to a Standards-Based Grading system, where students' grades are a true reflection of their mastery of skills. Once students have done the required extra work to learn, and they have mastered the concepts, they need to be re-tested. This testing can take place during Patriot Time in the testing center.
- STRETCH Learning activities. These are enrichment activities that support deeper learning. Often they are activities teachers could not fit in during the regular class time. Sometimes Stretch Learning activities target gifted students. For example, a science teacher did a starfish-dissecting lab Sometimes they are "just for fun" activities that expose students to new ideas and skills. Stretch Learning can provide opportunities for teachers to sneak in some extra practice or instruction. For example, an English teacher did an Origami Stretch Learning session. The students didn't recognize it, but she was helping them improve their ability to read and follow directions (functional text). Several times a year we show an educational movie in the auditorium for those interested – for example, near Martin Luther King Day, we showed a video about Dr. King's contributions.
- CAREER EXPLORATION: Guest presenters share information about his/her career with the students – the hiring outlook, the salary, the education required, etc. We use a template with information created out of the Utah Futures program to visually supplement the information the presenter brings. Students can choose to attend these presentations if they are not assigned to a Concept Mastery or a Tutorial class.
- STUDY HALL: Many of our students are on the honor roll students and are doing well in school but are extremely busy with extra-curricular activities. If they do not need or have interest in one of the other Patriot Time activities, they can use this half-hour of time to start their homework, study or read. This frees up time after school for other worthwhile activities. We have found that when students get started on homework at school, they are more likely to complete it at home that night and turn it in. Study Hall is held in the library.