Block Classes: Classes of the Future?


Two teachers. Fifty students. Two classrooms. Two hours per day. One block class.

This year FHC had a new sophomore class implemented: an English and U.S. History block class. This is a class that students can sign up for where they take English and U.S. History, which are two subjects meshed together to create a two hour class. English teacher Jonathan Fisher and History teacher Laura Styles took this challenge head on and made it work perfectly. These teachers took both of the curriculums, combined them, and taught them in a way to make easier for students to relate their learning in multiple contexts.

This combination, according to Fisher, presents a learning opportunity for both the student, as well as the teacher.

“The best opportunity is for the English teacher to stop having to cover the historical context surrounding a piece of literature. In the past, we have essentially been repeating what students had already covered in their history class,” Fisher said. “This also frees the history teacher from needing to come up with skills based assignments focusing instead on their subject matter.”

The American Literature curriculum and the US History programs line up very closely, so the  collision was very smooth.  This allowed for easy understanding of the material within the two classes.  

In the beginning of the year, the students had a project called Makerspace. The project was assigned during their Industrial Revolution unit.

“We were put into groups and you had to design your own invention,” Sophomore Kalie Rubey said.

The Makerspace project was a very supplemental part of the year, according to both student and teacher alike.  It opened the eyes of many to how hard it was back then.

Many of the students, including Sophomore Evan Purcell, have taken a liking to the block class as well.

“I love this class because it is it doesn’t require much effort. The teachers make is so easy to understand and it is so enjoyable,” Purcell said.  

But this is not the only block class in the building; there is an AP Chemistry block, an AP Bio block, as well as other AP courses. These classes last two hours as well, however, the difference is that it is one class. These classes consist of one hour of learning and usually one hour of a lab, where students go more in depth with their curriculum.

These classes are revolutionizing the scheduling of high school kids all around the country. They are creating new learning environments and new teaching duos. From the mouths of many students, most would recommend.

 “I’m sure that there will be at least two sophomore classes next year,” Fisher said. “[So], keep your eyes open for an 11th grade option in the future as well.”