A Day in My Life as a Pivot Student
It’s every teenager’s worst nightmare – the alarm goes off on Monday morning. The weekend was too short as always and now it’s time to get ready for school. I’m not on my way to what you would call a “traditional” High School, though, I attend Pivot Charter School. The regular High School thing wasn’t really working out for me, so my parents and I decided that a school that offered independent study and one-on-one support would be better for me. I arrive at 8:30, and at 8:45 we start our morning activity. On Mondays, we share current events that happened over the weekend. I always find out something new, and it’s nice to have a reason to stay at least a little bit updated on what’s happening in the world.
My Educational Coordinator and I decided that Monday should be “Math Monday.” I dislike Algebra as much as the next person, so I wasn’t happy about this at first. It has worked out pretty well though, as the Math teacher at my Resource Center teaches an open Math workshop every Monday from 9:30 to 10:15. I can get situated, take a look at the lesson, and prepare any questions I might have for him before I head into the workshop. Since Math isn’t my strongest subject, it’s nice to get the extra help.
10:15 is break time, and I head outside to eat my snack and catch up with my friends to see how their weekends were. When I first came to Pivot, I was worried that I would miss out on the social parts of school, but I get along with my classmates at the Resource Center really well (sometimes a little too well, as we have to be reminded to stop talking and focus on our work). After break, I have some time to focus on my work independently, but the teachers are always around if I have any questions.
I can attend classes and clubs in person at the resource center on Mondays and Wednesdays, then virtual workshops on Tuesdays and Thursdays from home. On these days, I don’t go into the resource center, so I like to work on my History and English classes. These are the classes I like the most and feel most confident in and I usually get pretty good grades working independently. But it is actually harder being at home – I have to be so much more independent. When I’m working on a project or an essay, I still like to talk to my English teacher at the Resource Center before turning in a final draft. It can be distracting working from home, but if I’m binge-watching something on Netflix and haven’t even started anything until noon, I can always expect an email or text from my EC checking in; that’s when I know I better get started. My parents and I have meetings with my EC on one Friday a month. At first I thought it would get annoying but it’s nice to catch up and make sure I’m on track. I want to make sure I graduate high school on time and I can tell my EC wants me to too.
Speaking of English class, I was excited to find out that this year I could take a Creative Writing class! It is definitely more work than I thought it would be at first, but I’m having fun with the writing assignments. My English teacher even says she can submit some of my stories to get them published! How cool is that? I’m also a part of the school newspaper. We meet twice a month: once to brainstorm what to write about and then again to edit what we’ve written. Everyone works together on different columns based on what they like. I’m the “Entertainment Reporter”, so I find out what shows and movies my fellow students are most excited about, as well as giving occasional movie reviews and entertainment news. Once a month, we publish the newsletter for everyone that attends my Resource Center.
I am looking forward to two field trips coming up. One is a hike in a local park while we do clean up duty and one is ice skating which I am really excited about because I have never done it before, but neither has anyone else at school. I like that we have these opportunities to socialize and experience new things. It is easier for me to enjoy these trips and even our crazy pajama day Fun Friday or 80’s day since this is such a smaller school. I don’t have to deal with the anxieties of the peer pressures at Pivot. Everyone gets each other here. We are just accepted. The teachers tell us they are meeting us where we are at and that everyone deserves a fresh start.
Well I have to get back to my work now. I failed a test yesterday and I just finished reviewing the material and doing a few more assignments for that test so my teacher is going to reset it for me to retake. Then I have to do my journal writing and an essay for science. It’s kind of weird that I never get to meet the teacher who grades my written science or English papers but they always give me fair and useful feedback that I learn from. Imagine that?!