All Hail the Flex Day

I teach high school, and I work with a collaborative team to plan and implement our curriculum. We've been doing this since 2011 and one of the things we figured out early was the power of the flex day.

In our first stab and planning and pacing we planned for every day, all of our lessons moving through the unit, and then on to the next unit. It wasn't long before we were showing up to team meetings apologizing to each other for being behind on our pacing. Our reasons for lagging behind were varied, some needed time to reteach, another was sick and the sub couldn't keep up, a third person was inspired to try something innovative, but it took a little longer. Then there were assemblies, evacuation drills, and the whole host of other things that popped up to steal instructional time from our days.

In our next round of planning, I proposed we add flex days to our units. A flex day is simply a day we haven't planned a specific lesson for. It's a blank, and it is movea…

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