Third marking period approaching brings out feelings of students, staff


Bryana Ayala

Lawson shares her third marking period schedule with Cooney. Some students have been logging into Skyward in order to see their second semester classes.

Bryana Ayala, Reporter

As the first semester of the school year comes to an end, students begin thinking about what the third marking period has in store for them. 

Some  say that the third marking period is the slowest. This is due to the fact that a limited number of days off are apparent in the year compared to the second marking period. 

“It’s getting closer to tests if not like one or two that are already happening…It’s a lot more after school studying on top of homework. It just generally tends to get more rushed and busy than any of the other marking periods,” junior Paris Lawson said. “It gives test anxiety, mostly it’s just like ‘wow I have all these tests coming up and I have to study for all of them’. It gets very chaotic very quickly.”

Some report feeling as though the third marking period becomes more difficult than others, and  some juniors express they feel it can be especially hard for them.  They say that junior year is when they begin to plan out their future such as what colleges they are going to attend or try to come to a conclusion of what major they are going to take.

“It definitely is nerve wracking thinking about the fact that it is the junior year, and so many places put emphasis on being proficient in your junior year, if not advanced. A lot of the testing that you do like SATs and stuff start usually in junior year. It’s when all of the stuff is going to affect your future. You start thinking about your career seriously. You start thinking about college, if you’re going or whatever other path you’re taking after high school. There’s a lot of pressure of not just doing well in school, but also starting to think about what’s coming after school. Most think it’s better to have a plan before you get to the end, so it’s a lot of preparation just for both in and out of school, and that’s what makes it stressful,” Lawson said.

A common experience for some students is the change in classes. Some are excited about getting to go to a new class and experience different things. Others express the thrill of meeting new classmates and teachers. 

“I’m most excited for new electives. I get a study hall, so that’ll be nice to have more free time after school. I have a public speaking class that changes to a study hall, and I have painting that changes to ceramics. Like, I’m not stressing myself out all the time. I have some fun electives,” junior Marin Cooney said. “I don’t think it’ll be that stressful talking to new people. I think I’m pretty easy to get along with; I always start conversations with strangers.”

Others report they are more anxious about the change. Some are scared that they will have trouble with finding their way and that they won’t get along with their new peers. 

“It’s like a break in my routine and kind of messes me up, and I have to get used to it because I’m going to new classes which means I have to find new ways to go to class and I have to meet new people. It makes my anxiety kind of high. I’m just scared that I’ll forget or be late,” freshman Carmen Stevanus said. “I’m worried about new people because getting around new people can kind of change you. For example, if you’re around new people, then you’ll be happy. If the class is kind of sad and like they don’t talk a whole lot, you’re going to be quiet and feel like you can’t be yourself as much.”

Other people besides students are also looking ahead to the next semester and teachers. Many teachers are thinking about the third marking period and what’s to come in a variety of ways. 

“I’m hopeful. I think students have found their groove; it’s been a very difficult year…I think excited is the best way to describe how I feel. We only have half a year to go, so it’s an exciting feeling,” English teacher Heather Tippett-Wertz said.

As the next semester approaches, some teachers voice how they have seen grades become affected during the third marking period. They indicate that some students who didn’t do well in the first semester tend to try and bring their grade up in the next.

“Depending on how their grades are, people start to really worry about passing courses for the year, so they realize if they didn’t do so well in the first and second marking period they have to really set it up for the third and fourth marking period,” science teacher Julie Gardner said.

Some teachers have also mentioned that they can see the opposite occurrence happening. Some students get too comfortable during the first semester and begin lacking in the second. 

“My student teacher and I always make sure the assignments are fun and engaging to keep the excitement up because, yes I think we all get a little too comfortable and sometimes slack because of that…I’m hoping that we can just keep the enthusiasm going”, Tippett-Wertz said.

As the third marking period comes, teachers of half year electives take in new students to their classroom. Some report being excited about having new students and getting to know them. Others are more nervous about the change.

“The first time you meet a new batch of students, you’re always a little bit nervous because you always want it to go well from the start. As a teacher, you want to be very welcoming and prepared…from the first time they set foot in your classroom, you want to be assuring and show them that they made the right choice,” astronomy teacher James Krug said. “I would say I am no longer as nervous as I was as a younger teacher, I don’t stay as nervous for as long, but I think that first week or two in particular is really really key in making the semester go a lot easier.”

Other teachers will continue to teach the same students from the first half of the year. Some express they don’t mind missing out on the opportunity and are glad to be able to continue seeing them grow from the beginning of the year.

“I’m excited to continue to work with my students because after last year it’s good to have a normal year when we’re all back in school again. To actually have a full year with everyone, continuing to get to know my students and it’s nice to actually be with them from beginning to end,” English teacher Connor Chywski says.

Both students and staff alike are looking ahead to the second semester and wonder what it will bring to them in the later half of the year. 

“We’re all on the same team, that’s important to remember. Students, teachers, administrators, we all just wanna have a good year. I want all my students to succeed, and I’m sure we will,” Chywski said.