Bad plan for planners?

Bad plan for planners?

Photo illustration by Kate Alaks

This year's planners don't have quite the same layout as last year's model.

Kate Alaks, Staff Reporter

RB’s class of 2014 was the first full class that was a part of the executive functioning program. This program, which is designed to help students use planning and study skills, includes a color coded notebook system and a planner. The planners were given to students on the first day of school. Having used the planner freshman year, I find it very helpful. However, I think last year’s planner had a much better design.

Last year’s planner had lined columns for each day of the week for writing homework assignments. However, this year’s has divided the each day into sections for English, Math, Science, social Studies, and two fill-it-in-yourself boxes. I don’t like this system because I find it easier to write assignments down in order by period. It’s less confusing, and it makes it easier to see what I have to do. Essentially, I just end up ignoring the sections and writing my assignments in order.

 Another problem is that there are only six sections, but seven periods in the day. Even though most people have a period for gym or study hall, they might still have assignments, or just things to remember, like “bring socks for gym!” Apparently the design was changed from last year because students didn’t like having to write in each class. I can see how that could be annoying, but I don’t think writing in the subjects is the best way to fix it.

Also, in the old planner, for each week they would have a fun fact, such as “The word ‘lethologica’ describes the state of not being able to remember the word you want,” and little cartoons. While they weren’t exactly useful, they were fun and interesting. However, this year they have replaced those with word definitions of “nice” words. All these words are based on character counts and the six pillars. While that may seem like a good idea, the monotony of words like “generosity,” “equity,” “goodness,” and “civility” make me think of a subliminal mind control plot.

There are some good things about the new planners such as the student handbook in the front, but overall I find it harder and less interesting to use. Christine Sutton, the staff member most involved in executive functioning, thinks that these planners are better than last year’s, with room for improvement, but she also said that any student with comments or suggestions about the planner should talk to her. I have. I suggest other students do as well.