This blog starts a four-part series highlighting first years in expanded learning time schools. Look for part II this week.
Today we highlight the great work that is happening at Guilmette Elementary School in Lawrence, MA. Guilmette is finishing their first year as an expanded-time school, and after a complete school redesign, the school day looks completely different. Take a look for yourself into the great enrichment programs they have developed with the local Boys and Girls Club:
In order to prepare for this new school curriculum, Guilmette Elementary, like most schools implementing more and better learning time, spent a lot of time planning. All of their work has paid off, and they have seen many positive school outcomes. Here are just some of their successes:
- More teacher professional development
- More utilization of community partners
- One strong, focused instructional focus
- Aligned school resources to their instructional focus.
The teachers are excited about this new school day, with one teacher explaining, “It’s not chaotic like it used to be…we are all aligned in our instructional priorities.”
Expanding time in school has provided teachers at the Guilmette more time to collaborate and a more cohesive learning experience within separate subjects in the same grade.
When discussing the changes she sees within same-grade subjects, a teacher said, “Instead of four separate teams, we are one large team. Students will have a continuum of learning.”
It’s exciting to see the difference just one year of expanded learning time can make to students and teachers in a school…
No matter how many years of ELT your school has, share your school story with us to be highlighted on our blog!