Tag Archives: PBL

Schedules and Semesters… Story by Isaac Solly

As students get back into their school routines, at least one aspect of the day is sure to be different than last year, as class times have been adjusted to add a total of 15 minutes to each day. Starting school 5 minutes earlier at 7:55 and finishing 5 minutes later, at 3:15 made up for this. The rest of the added time came from student lunch period, reducing it to 25 minutes.

Bus Timing… School ends now at 3:15, but buses won’t leave for another 10 minutes past that
Bus Timing… School ends now at 3:15, but buses won’t leave for another 10 minutes past, until 3:25

Period timing is now somewhat changed from last year, but not by more than 3 minutes per class (which is about the time between classes anyway), so it is unlikely that there will be far reaching consequences. Students seem to prefer losing 5 minutes at lunch rather than the alternative of taking away holiday-time to make up for the deficit.

However, what was the reasoning for the schedule changes?

In order to get a credit for a class, 60 hours must be spent in it per semester. These are the rules that national public schools, including SHS, go by. However, Forrest Bird goes by trimesters, meaning that the third trimester project’s extra hours and half-credit isn’t part of state requirements.

The necessity of a half-credit is debatable in on itself—on one hand, it provides a “safety net” that can add up to an additional 2 credits per subject should a student spend 4 years in Forrest Bird. There also is merit in having a school-wide project that promotes creativity and individual thinking, as seen recently in the service-learning project last year. Then again, this is all extra time not mandated by the state, and won’t be required for graduation.

Rethinking the Schedule… Class periods times have been adjusted slightly to create an extra 15 minutes at school
Rethinking the Schedule… Class periods times have been adjusted slightly to create an extra 15 minutes at school.

This leads to the argument between keeping trimesters as they are or switching to a semester based schedule. Learning in semesters would keep Forrest Bird more in line with NIC and SHS, and would limit disruption that happens to the middle school during third trimester. However, though the middle school doesn’t do a project, 8th graders make up the time with a week-long trip to Yellowstone, and other grades have field trips as well.

Third trimester can either be seen as an integral part of the Forrest Bird identity, or as an unnecessary drain on student time for a token half-credit. This question is essentially the basis of the trimester-semester debate, and will be the basis of any decision to keep or do away with our new schedule.

All Photos by Isaac Solly

Responding to Letters to the Editors… Story by Isaac Solly

Last week, many students sent letters to the editor in advisory class. Bird Eye News wanted to look at some of these, either to address concerns or answer questions. We appreciate everyone who sent a letter and is actively involved in the Bird Eye News—the letters that were chosen just warranted a quicker response than some others.

 

“Dear Editor

Your title is so bad and great at the same time. It holds the perfect criteria to be a clickbait Buzzfeed title. Though I’m not sure if the all capital letters was your decision, it really helped the effect. Also, in the title it says by Roger Rogers, as a pseudonym. Roger Rogers is a great pseudonym, especially considering the subject matter. But under it there is the real name of the author, so what is the point? At least you had a spoiler warning.

Regards, Joshua Droppa”

Firstly, I assume the piece you are talking about is “Spoilers! Star Wars Episode VIII Leaked—Real or Fake?… Story by Roger Rogers.” You should know that the name underneath the title isn’t the writer, but the editor (in this case Jada, but it’s often my editing as well). Roger Rogers is, as you pointed out, one of our writer’s aliases. As for the capital letters, if you look through the website that is our formatting across the board and nothing to do with a clickbait.

Editor Aliases… The name underneath an article is the editor, not the writer. Writer names (or aliases) are always in the title
Editor Aliases… The name underneath an article is the editor, not the writer. Writer names (or aliases) are always in the title

We appreciate the feedback though, and it should be noted that we don’t aim for clickbait when choosing titles.

 

 

“Dear Editors,

I have to be honest with you. I don’t watch and/or read your articles. When I go to your website I don’t have any interest in reading the articles. They don’t draw to my attention. I have only watched one of your YouTube videos. I am subscribed to your channel.

The website go there first thing that I think of when I look at it is boring. My mind doesn’t want to take the time to read the article if there is nothing there to draw my attention. When I say it looks boring is because all the colors are brown, black and white. My attention just leaves.

The YouTube Channel I can’t say much. It doesn’t draw my attention. Maybe you can try different life hacks, DIY’s, different exercises, doing different lessons that people could use (piano, taekwondo, singing, and dancing) and fun useful things to do. Maybe you can add some pizzazz. I honestly don’t know what you should add to your YouTube channel. Thank you for your time.

Kind Regards, Yakira L. Jones”

Well firstly, thank you for subscribing to the channel! I believe we are at 30 or so subscribers right now, meaning that our subscriber base has nearly doubled in the past two weeks. As for our website design, we try and cover it with pictures to give a contrast to the background. The black-background and white-text theme is actually much less boring that the inverse of that, while still being legible.

What I would like to point out is that Meghan is featuring a cooking show, which actually pulls in lots of your DIY suggestions. Bird Eye News is trying to focus on events relevant to students as well, meaning we have to keep a balance on what content we post. Hopefully, this sheds some light on our editing decisions.

The Harrison Report... Harrison will be returning in an episode talking about student projects
Upcoming Videos… Harrison will be returning in an episode talking about student projects, while Meghan plans to do a cooking show

 

“Dear Editors,

I have an idea for you YouTube channel. I propose that you and your associates come together and video document a student’s service project. Perhaps you can come together and vote for which project you want to make a mini document on. You could then post the potential video on your channel. This would show the ‘tubers’ what students of the Forrest Bird Charter School can/will do. Please take my suggestion into account.

With Regards, Rocco Sherman”

Actually, the upcoming Harrison Report showcases quite a few student projects. We also have an interview with the documentary crew, who are videoing other students for their own project. However, I agree that Bird Eye News could do an article or two on the service learning project. One of our goals this trimester was to involve students more in journalism, hence the letters to the editor, and I think that would be a good step in doing that.

Most of the letters had positive things to say about our involvement with the student body, and further encouraged articles relating to FBCS (whether it be prom, fidget spinners, or surprisingly deep social issues). Also note that anyone who wants to give some feedback is free to do so anytime. This feedback is really valuable, and again, thanks to everyone who sent letters to the editor.

 

 

Finals Week Leading To Third Trimester… Jada Giddings

 

It’s the last week of second trimester and its havoc for all high school students; not to mention the final say over grades and passing classes. With the daily rush and the weight of homework, students have on the last week of March, it’s hard to believe they all can survive – and especially knowing third trimester will be bringing a new style of project-based learning at Forrest Bird Charter High School.

It’s finals week, more like a high school student’s final week of living.
It’s finals week, more like a high school student’s final week of living.

The sophomores through seniors will have their schedules changed under the means of the next big school project: community service. Helping the community, improving the town of Sandpoint, and showing off a creative mind are all a part of the project, but some sophomores disapprove of the assignment. Because the community project, it requires teenagers of FBCS to go out into the world and interact with the community to provide service to them. Of course, this leads some teens, those introverted or more independent, to disapproving of the more extroverted project. Also, a great displeasure from the percent of kids who don’t want the next trimester project to take place, also don’t approve of schedule changes.

A photo of the FBCS sign in our rainy springtime, ebbing third trimester to come.
A photo of the FBCS sign in our rainy springtime, ebbing third trimester to come.

Schedule changes, for sophomore through senior students, will consist of morning periods switching to an all-school class to receive lectures to impact their final project or entering the public to do their project. Luckily, for those who dislike the community service projects have an alternative set of projects to be accomplished that do not require leaving school campus. On the other hand, freshman will not be changing schedules. For them, everything will remain the same but some think that they should change their periods with their higher peers. Unfortunately, freshman will have to wait until tenth grade to partake in schedule changes for third trimester.