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Which Is the Best Free Block?

From cramming in last-minute studying to mitigating a night’s homework, free blocks are versatile resources in the Upper School day. Each period lasts 40 minutes and occurs at different parts of the school schedule, depending on the particular day of the week. Some periods, however, provide a significant edge in comparison to others. By evaluating each free block’s pros and cons, we will answer the essential question: “Which free block is the best?” Read along as we rank each period and assess their strengths and weaknesses.

E Block: E block – the pinnacle of all free blocks – takes all the advantages above. Although it lasts on Mondays, most of the studying for assessments on that day would have already been done over the weekend, so it can always be used just for completing work. It is in the middle of the schedule on Tuesdays and Fridays, so students can study for upcoming tests or complete their assignments. Once again, on Fridays, it is right in the middle of the day, so boys can choose what they want to do for that period. E Block earns the gold trophy because it is almost always in the middle of the day and still allows students to decide on their own what choices they want to make for that period.

D Block: Similar to C block, D block is also early on most short-block days. However, students can still use it later on Mondays to prepare for their final two classes or start their homework. D block is also beneficial on Tuesdays, as sit-down lunch takes the role of X block; a free period in the early to middle part of the day would implement that X block back into your schedule. A considerable advantage of having D block as a free period is that it is also on Thursdays, which does not have an X block due to sit-down lunches. Overall, D block offers students ample opportunities to study and complete homework, thus earning the second-best free block.

C Block: In third place comes the free period of C Block because of its usefulness and reliability almost any day. It is relatively early on Mondays and Tuesdays, so studying and homework from previous classes may be done. However, being last on Wednesdays and after X Block, C Block could be better for studying, although it is beneficial for completing homework from any classes assigned for the following day. It is also first on Fridays, so students can finish their homework from the previous night or prepare for upcoming tests on a busy Friday.

F Block: F block is commonly found towards the back half of schedules and always follows X block on non-Long Block days. The timing of the block could be better in terms of studying, as it occurs later in the day, so any tests most likely would already have been taken. However, students may take a bite at a sizable amount of homework since F block follows X block 3 out of the five days of the week. Thus, students will consistently head home with less homework, setting up better nights. Most of their classes will already have been completed, too, so students can pick and choose which homework pieces to take a stab at early on. It also lasts on Thursdays, so students may be unable to study for tests again but can do any of their class’s homework from either long-block days.

B Block: An advantage of Free B blocks is that they are early on Mondays and Tuesdays. On the former, students may finish the homework assigned to them from the previous block or finish any homework given to them on hectic Mondays – where every class assigns homework due the following day. However, this free block ranks lower than others because of its impracticality on Wednesdays and Fridays. B block comes right before X block on Wednesdays, creating a 2 ½ hour free period. Students will often already complete most of their work during this time, so that the block will have almost no purpose. The block comes last on Fridays when all students eagerly await to head off to sports or home. Being last on a Friday eliminates the possibility of studying for any assessments on a day when teachers assign them frequently.

A Block: Simply put, A block has very few benefits and, thus, lands last in the rankings. On Mondays, it serves as a useless first period; students most likely would already have accomplished all that they needed to before, so they would do little to nothing come 8:00. The following day, the period is last, so there are no opportunities in the day to study for tests or quizzes. On Wednesdays, students can get some homework done from the previous day because it is first up in the morning and right before X block on Fridays, which creates just an extended version of a free block late in the day. A better use of a free block would be to separate the X and free blocks to utilize each more efficiently.

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