Enriching electives for 2017

Registration for classes this year takes place online from February 21 to March 17. Students meet with their counselors to make academic choices, but for electives, there are many to choose from. There are the easy ones, hard ones, boring ones, and the ones that we love.
There are also the electives low on the totem pole that are completely underrated or just not well-known.
If writing is something that you enjoy, then the first elective, creative writing, is something you should seriously consider. The course work consists of writing in multiple genres, trying new techniques in order to expand students’ horizons. This class is flexible, and students are able to choose whether to read their works or not, and they can enter competitions for prizes and/or recognition.
“I especially love listening to them bounce ideas off of one another-they’re amazing! Also, the classroom atmosphere is extremely laid-back,” English teacher Tanya Merchant said.
The second elective is for all the technologically smart people. It’s Game Art and Design Honors. Yes, there is a prerequisite of Scientific and Technical Visualization I, and there may be some math involved. The document outlining all the electives state that the elective emphasizes “areas related to art, history, ethics, plot development, storyboarding, programming, 2D visual theory, and interactive play technologies. Students develop physical and virtual games using hands-on experiences and a variety of software.”
The next elective is auto shop. This elective can prepare students for the future by teaching students how to fix their car or take proper care of it. It could also help in the long run if a student’s car breaks down on the side of Route 66, for example. Knowing how to fix a minor problem or change a flat tire can save money that would have been spent on car fees.
The final elective is Mandarin. Mandarin is a hard language to learn, but an impressive one as it helps in the business and e-commerce world immensely. People are more likely to be hired when bilingual, especially in Mandarin when working for a global company or (obviously) a company owned by China. China is the second largest economy in the world according to Boston University. However the class is not solely focused on Mandarin and students also learn about Chinese history and culture, such as the mid-autumn festival and the Chinese New Year.
“Students have tried making glutinous rice balls, paper cutting, and writing with a Chinese calligraphy brush. It’s more of a hands-on experience class,” Mandarin teacher Margaret Lee-Fitzgerald said.
The students are also assigned pen pals from Taiwan to communicate with once in awhile. Even though there are only four electives listed, there are many electives that are underrated or fly under the radar when students are registering. Make sure to research some of the electives before registering at the end of the year. There might be a hidden gem waiting to be uncovered.