One student might need extra help with a particular math unit. Another student might need to review for a spelling test. A third student might want to learn how to play the guitar. The WIN period at Somers Middle School dedicates time to provide “extra” for all students.
WIN is an acronym for What I Need. WIN classes give students at Somers Middle School the flexibility to self-select how they fill a daily, forty-five-minute class period. Students can choose from many options that change regularly, from finding a quiet spot to read in the library, to getting extra help, to learning mindfulness tools, or to participating in a sports tournament.
“I like to study as much as I can, so I like to go to reviews,” said Ava Lazari, a sixth-grade student.
WIN periods can also be scheduled by teachers to provide students with an opportunity to work on a new skill or dive deeper into a topic they are already learning about. “I like it when teachers book me. I have a hard time booking because it’s difficult to decide what to pick,” said Jianah Rosa.
During a recent WIN period, sixth-grade students had the opportunity to learn an English foundational skill by studying the difference between literal and inferential thinking. Small groups of students were each given a realistic photo depicting a different scene to study. They were tasked with determining what were literal elements of the photo and what they could then infer about it.
“We do a lot of partnerships in WIN, which is a lot of fun because you get to work with your friend while doing work,” Jianah said.
WIN periods also provide students with the extra time they need during their school day for studying when they have busy schedules outside of school. “We all do after-school activities or sports, and it can get tight trying to fit in studying,” said Gianna Villareale.