A guide to finding the perfect class.
By Tara Higgins and Miranda House
It’s that time again, time to pick classes. This can be pretty stressful for many students. Many students have the same questions. “Will these classes look good to colleges? Is an AP class a good idea for my schedule? Should I take on harder classes?” We’ve gathered tips from students, teachers, and administration to help you out on registering for next year’s classes.
1. Think about your schedule.
When preparing for next year’s classes, be sure to take into account any extracurricular activities that you are planning on joining. If you’re going to be in sports or clubs that require competition and missing school, then don’t take on multiple classes with lots of after-school work required. Think about why you’re deciding to take each of your classes, whether for the challenge, the ease, or just because your BFF since third grade is also taking it. Consider the fact that you might not get first pick of your electives, so choose meaningful “alternates”. Make sure you choose classes YOU want to take. Don’t make the mistake of letting others plan your schedule. That being said, don’t completely ignore their advice (or ours for that matter ;)), but just ask yourself: “Is this really me?”
2. Find a balance.
If you want to take lots of AP classes, or classics that require lots of homework, then it’s okay to take a few easier elective classes. Make sure the tougher classes are all subjects that interest you, perhaps ones you’ve taken before at a regular or honors level. That combined with fun electives offers a nice brain break for when you spend most of the day working really hard. Try an art class, or music class to stimulate the brain and refresh you.
3. Pursue your interests.
Many students in high school are deciding on possible career options. Taking classes that fit your interests or hobbies is a great way to expand options and knowledge on jobs that you may be interested in one day. They might encourage you to work towards your goals and give new purpose to your high school experience.
4. Try something new.
As mentioned, when in high school, taking a new class and stepping out of the box, could open you up to possibilities for more future careers. You never know if you’ll find a passion for a class that you never put much thought into hearing about. If you’re already artsy and love drawing and painting; try branching out to ceramics or photography, or even a completely new take on art: music – like guitar. Always been interested in detective stories or murder mysteries? Try criminal justice. You just might discover a new passion, and you’ll have a lot of fun along the way. And even if you don’t end up loving it, at least you tried, and can move on to the next fun class on your list.
5. Have fun!
We know it’s stressful, but this time of year means you’re just one step closer to your ultimate goal: graduation. The right schedule can make your year fun and interesting. So follow your head and see where it takes you.
Kids in the Hall
“When picking my classes, I try to challenge myself. I want to build up an impressive resume for colleges to look at,” sophomore Lauren Gay said. A good way to decide whether you’d be interested in a class is to ask friends or upperclassmen about their favorite classes, or past experiences in a class that you’re curious about. We asked several students just that:
“I recommend the engineering and technology classes,” sophomore Nikki Bernuy said. “They’re a fun way to get competitive and work your brain.”
“I love creative writing. It’s a good class to express your creativity and to get a chance to refresh for the rest of the day,” sophomore Ciera Johnson added.
Many of the students found that their favorite classes corresponded with their hobbies. Sophomore Henry Daniels is a prime example of this theory. “I recommend guitar. I love playing and engaging in music and it’s fun to perform with friends. It’s a great place to learn new things, share ideas, and jam for an hour.”
Electives were also a popular favorite. “I like Student Government because it’s fun, exciting, and I get to leave my mark on Legend,” junior Justin Le said.
Even the more challenging classes made it onto the list. “I’ve taken a lot of classes at legend and it’s impossible for me to pick a favorite, but I’ve had the most fun in my AP classes. Although they are more work, I’m more involved in the topic and I learn about more in depth things. I love to learn and I have never felt that my time in an AP class has been wasted,” senior Madeleine Kriech said.
“I plan on studying physics in college, and the physics classes here were good intro classes, covered interesting topics, and had good teachers,” senior Ansh Desai said.
“AP Chem is my favorite class because the concepts we learn are fascinating, such as atomic structure, gases, and thermochemistry. The labs we do are also cool,” junior Megan Yu added.