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  • Writer's pictureAlison Hamacher

What is Behind the Mascot Time Flex Period Name

As more schools look for creative ways to provide students with more opportunities and to ensure teachers have extra time with students they need, “flex periods” have become increasingly popular in many middle and high school schedules. This time is viewed as an opportunity for more time between students and teachers, whether for intervention, reteaching, academic support, enrichment, clubs, extracurriculars, or study halls.


While “flex period” tends to be among the most common general term, they can often go by many names, such as Tutorial Period, Intervention/Enrichment (I/E) Time, What I Need (W.I.N.) Time, Advisory Period, among many others. In our sample of over 8000 schools, it seems many schools (21%) decided to tailor the name to their specific campus, using their mascot in the name. In this article, we’ll explore the rationale behind choosing to center the naming around the mascot when creating a Flex Period and why it seems to be the most common choice for schools. 


 

If you are considering adding a Flex Period to your school day, and are looking for additional information about the many benefits Flex Periods offer, consider reading 19 Benefits of Flex Periods in Schools.


 

Why Does the Flex Period Name Matter?

Flex Periods offer one of the most important things in education: more time between students and teachers who need it. Given that, we want the time to be valued by our students and considered positively. We want students to see that this is a time to support their needs and often for them to have a voice and choice, usually with opportunities for extra help, enrichment, study time, and club opportunities, among others. How a Flex Period is packaged can be a huge factor in the period’s success and the students taking advantage of a great opportunity. So, when schools look to name their period, it seems most schools are looking for a name that is valued, easy to remember, and reflects community expectations. Big picture, they’re often looking for something that aligns with their school culture and vision, and their school mascot is often a representation of all of these things.


 

If you’re looking to find out more about what a Flex Period is, click here to learn more. 


 

Why the Mascot?

When schools look to implement a Flex Period, they often look to give the period a name that communicates its primary purpose. Schools that name their period What I Need (W.I.N.) Time often prioritizes student choice, while those naming the period Intervention Period, would showcase the school prioritizing academic support. When the time is named after the mascot, those schools likely are prioritizing their community and culture, and can be viewed as a motivator to push everyone to strive for the greater good and hold the learning opportunities in high regard to meet the expectations set forth by what it means to be a mascot (Tiger, Cougar, Bear, etc). 


Mascots often serve as one of the biggest symbols of pride and community for a school. It unites everyone under one name, with the goal of students feeling connected and included within the school community. Schools often want to establish a sense of belonging on their campuses, which means mascots can help communicate that in a Flex Period name, which helps bring everyone together. Building on the qualities of the mascot can further drive home the idea of community, shared expectations, and a sense of pride to be the best example of the mascot there is. Additionally, the mascot name is an equalizer for all - everyone participates. It is not as targeted of a name, like Intervention Period or Remediation Period, and therefore provides a safe option for each student to get what they need during the Flex Period. The name does not leave a connotation of tracking or labeling, it makes everyone’s needs, whatever they are on any given day, valid.



Real Examples of Mascot Time (Flex Period) Names 

As stated above, 21% of our sample chose their mascot to name their Flex Period, making it the most popular type of name among the 8,326 schools we reviewed in a random sample. Below are the top 10 most common mascots we found in our research, but for more on our methodology and the findings, check out our post on the most common flex periods names here.


The top 10 mos mascots:

  1. Eagle

  2. Panther 

  3. Tiger 

  4. Cougar 

  5. Falcon 

  6. Hawk 

  7. Bear 

  8. Bulldog 

  9. Titan

  10. Viking


Side Note: 2.7% of schools also referred to their time as PAWS, using this acronym for things like, “Positive Attitudes Will Succeed,” “Positive Activities With Students,” or “Promoting Achievement With Students,” connecting it to their mascot. For this list, PAWS would’ve come in 9th, but given lots of these mascots have “paws,” we left it off.


 

Building community, communicating expectations, and creating a sense of pride around your Flex Period through your mascot name can be a valuable option. Establishing a time for everyone in the school community to be their best selves and work to their fullest potential with choice and positivity will give stakeholders their path toward growth. The Flex Period’s many opportunities for students and teachers to have more time to focus on what matters most is something everyone in the school community can be proud of especially when everyone has the same opportunity to benefit from additional learning opportunities. 


So, if you’d like to see how Flex Periods can be a part of your school, whether you name it after your mascot or not, schedule a demo here to learn more and decide if a Flex Period could be a good fit for your campus. 


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