The importance of electives


Tools for the future! Mr. Peters’ manufacturing class assembles a wooden toolbox. The class had previously cut out and carved pieces of wood by themselves learning the basics of how to operate machinery in a workplace environment. “I like that I can teach students something they can actually use in the real world” stated Mr. Peters.

Ethan Clark, Staff Reporter

Core classes are considered the building blocks of a high school education and for most students, the only ones that matter when it comes to a student’s schooling. Most students are given electives, non-mandatory classes that help colleges see what they are interested in and foster their talents. However, to the students that truly focus on these non-required classes, electives provide many boosts to schooling that may not be visible at first. Theater teacher Ms. Catell and digital design teacher Mr. Ferrara recognize these many benefits of electives.

One bonus is that a student may leave the realm of academics and look forward into future jobs and college education. Unlike academics which set everyone on a strict path despite wanting to do something else, electives show students what each career path entails as well as letting them choose which ones they might want to take. That way, even if a student decides that their elective is dull or does not want to do it for a career, they always have a permanent skill to carry on to other classes or even to a job.

Mr. Ferrara stated that a main bonus is that “students can really learn a nice skill that they can take with them out of high school.”

“Well, electives kind of give students a break from education, or like, your academics. Electives also help you find out what you really like in life,” followed up Ms. Catell, the theater teacher.

Electives have less rules and requirements for their classes due to not being part of the core classes. That allows teachers to have less restrictions on how they teach their subject. Students can also utilize the lack of requirements to allow themselves to experiment with the class, while still juggling the pressure and struggle of academics.

Ms. Catell agrees with these benefits and that she “can talk about a subject I’m so passionate, so in love with, that I can talk about it all day.”

Electives can provide many basic mental skills and perks that students might not find in a regular classroom like the ability to express creativeness. Characteristics like this can be essential in common lines of work, such as theater of course, but also in art or design.

Not to mention, at its most basic foundation, “It allows for almost a break to express yourself, you have this ability to create something and be proud of it,” Ms. Catell feels.

Ferrara added as well, saying, “It’s nice that these kids can make something and see their results right away, and they can see how much they’ve improved.”

Not all electives are for everyone but with such a large selection to choose from and so many benefits to them, it would be a waste to not try as many as possible. From theatre, to design, to even journalism, these classes await students brave enough to experiment and try out these different school activities.