Battlefield’s wide variety of course options

Elect to take electives


Photo from Pixabay via Creative Commons

Heather Trobridge, Author

As scheduling rolls around the corner, all Battlefield students will be making choices that will affect their 2017-2018 school year. Along with one’s core classes, Battlefield offers a variety of electives for students to take; some have backgrounds in STEM, some have backgrounds in English, while others have backgrounds in the arts. Whatever one’s interest is, BHS offers a wide variety of electives to meet that student’s needs.
Junior Sam Scott is in his second year taking creative writing. “We have a really cool and light hearted environment,” says Scott, “during the class, we write, whatever we’d like most of the time. It’s definitely my favorite class.” While Scott personal prefers writing realistic fiction and short stories, the class allows one to write in any genera and branch out into different styles of writing. Another major part of taking this class is working on the production of the Literary Magazine, the Vox Populi. While still taking on the normal curriculum, Scott is also helping in the production of the magazine, saying that, “right now I’m still helping design and choose pieces for the Lit Mag this year, but I plan on taking over a much bigger role next year.” If one does not want to take on the responsibilities of designing the Lit Mag, it is not a requirement of being in the class. Scott speaks highly of the course’s teacher, Mr. Bridges, stating that he provides a great environment; one that pressures you perform, but in the best way. He highly recommends this course for any student next year, adding that, “it’s a great opportunity and was my best choice, schedule wise, during high school.”
Mr. Bridges is not only the teacher for the creative writing class, but also the advisor of the journalism classes. Sophomore Alex Young highly advises taking this class, as it is one where you get to decide on your assignments. Young typically covers sports, politics, and science for the magazine, Inside 15000, and newly launched website, the BHS Beat, and says that he, “likes writing, and this class gave me the freedom to express my views and talents to the school.” While he was originally skeptical of taking this course, Young views it as “one of the best academic choices I’ve ever made.” As a sophomore, he has been given opportunities to work on designing for the school’s magazine and editing the website as an editor for the publication. “The editors basically put together the magazine that the students read, so they have to be on top of their game at all times,” says Young, “editors’ responsibilities are pretty crucial to the program.” Keeping an open mind is Young’s biggest word of advice for those considering taking the class next year, “every writer has their own opinions, and every writer will express those opinions. It is a student’s job to understand that, listen, and move on. Writers [also] need to have an open mind when covering topics. Remember that you have the ability pick and choose what to cover as you please.” The professional atmosphere of the class has also led Young to consider journalism as a career in his future, stating that, “It’s something that is always fun because as the writer, you always have control of what you produce. I enjoy working with all the different writers to see what they have interest in. Journalism is something that really can bring people together.”

The third and final publication at Battlefield is by far the biggest; the yearbook. Senior Shelby Cesario, editor-in-chief of the yearbook, finds the class to be fantastic and a passion of hers, stating that, “Some people have sports, some people have clubs, I have yearbook; It’s definitely my passion. I love design, I love photography, I love teaching.” Cesario works hard on the publication, spending hours on end editing for the publication, and along with that, she assumes the role of a “mom” looking out for the other students in the publication. The close knit environment prompts students to work together, “everyone’s really tied together in a really tight string because we have to work together. We really have to have a tight relationship.” she says. There are many different jobs one can take on while working on the yearbook; one can work on Infographics, fun designs made for modules, writing copy, reporting on the story like a news event, taking photos and going to events to take pictures, or designing, where one makes templates for the pages. “By the end of the year, no matter what you do,” Cesario starts, “you’ll be a published student!” For students interested in taking the course, Cesario advises to always be responsible when doing work, because even though the workload is not bad, “you just need to make sure you’re doing it, especially because it’s a timely fashion; it’s a yearbook that’s chronological. If you don’t get [something] one week, you can’t get it the next week.” One of the biggest perks of being in the class is that a student will meet many new people working on the publication, “if you are a bubbly, extroverted person, you would definitely excel in yearbook,” Cesario adds, “you get to meet a lot of new people. I know most of the school now because of yearbook.” The fun and fast paced class is a must have for one’s schedule if they are looking for a way to get involved in the school!
Along with the various publications, students can look into the various marketing classes at Battlefield. Senior Jule Gaitley takes the marketing course here at Battlefield, and feels as though this class has prepared her well for college, seeing that she wants to major in it. In this class students will learn about basic market and advertising principles; Gaitley finds that after taking this course she is always picking out advertisements and thinking about the research and money that goes into it. “It’s second nature now,” she stated. For her, any student who wants to major in marketing and advertising must add this class into their schedule.

One does not just have to be on a sports team to excel in sports marketing! Senior Kyle Gallagher took the class because of his interest in sports and the background behind them. In the class they study the different marketing strategies and functions that many businesses use on a daily bases, as well as learn about the difference in each business and why it may be successful or not. Gallagher has enjoyed the class, stating that, “I could see myself doing something with this in the future, and I think this class gives you a good idea on what to expect because it teaches you a lot about the basic fundamentals of what is actually happening in the real world.” He highly recommends that Battlefield students consider the class while in scheduling, especially those who have a large interest in sports.
Calling all future athletic trainers! If one is interested in studying that art of athletic training, AT is the class for you. Senior Marion Richard loves the hands on atmosphere of the class, saying how it is just a very fun class. Richard’s love for anatomy is put to the test throughout the course, as they learn about various bones, muscles, tendons, and ligaments. Not only that, but one will also get to learn about certain sports injuries and how to care for them. For Richard, this class has furthered her interest in becoming an orthopedic/a sports medicine doctor. She has learned many skills, including, “how to be exact and precise with what you say and how you execute something like tape job or a special test for an injury.” Richard highly recommends this class for those who are interested in the medical field or just enjoy anatomy, however only if one is “up to learning and a little challenge.”
Not every elective has a background in science, math, and writing. The various art classes offer a creative outlet for students at Battlefield. Senior Jillian Smith decided to take the class because she knew it would be fun in the middle of her often hectic core classes. The art courses offer a lot of freedom to create one’s own masterpieces in their assignments, however there is a structured curriculum in the class. “In art we usually start by learning history on artists and techniques that we will eventually use in class,” states Smith, “we also take creative notes in our sketchbook in order to combine our academic and creative learning. In lower level art classes we usually do art just for fun, but in upper levels we often submit them in contests.” Smith says that the environment is very supportive and fun, “it is kind of therapeutic to go to art class and escape from outside stress,” she added. While some may not think of themselves as “naturally creative”, Smith recommends this class for all students because it focuses on personal creativity. “Throughout my time in art my teachers have always told me that in order to get the best results you need to draw from life. It is because of their advice that my art is usually inspired by things in my own life and surroundings.”
There is more to art than just painting and drawing as well, and if that is not one’s main interest, one can learn about the history behind famous works. Senior Emma Toureau enrolled in art history because of her interest in learning about the evolution of art through the passage of time. The class is structured like a normal class; they read through slide show presentations about a specific time period, artistic developments, and specific artists and then take quizzes and write essays analyzing the pieces of art. Toureau’s favorite part of this class is learning about art she may have never been exposed to or seen before. “It’s something different than any other high school class,” she says, “it offers a different perspective on all the history that we are taught; instead of getting the views from events and people of power, we get to learn about these events from artists and others whose voice may not be so mainstream.” Toureau recommends that organized students who are interested in art and very motivated to do well take the course, adding that, “it’s an AP class online, so the workload is pretty intense, but if the person is willing to do the work, it’s a lot of fun.”

If one enjoyed the Family and Consumer Sciences courses from middle school, Child Development is a good class to add to one’s schedule. Junior Emily Hillig takes this class and describes it as, “learning how to take care of children and the many responsibilities [that] come along with it [and] how hard it actually is.” With that students will learn about various family types and how to protect themselves from various diseases and knowing the symptoms of them. Hillig highly recommends that students add this to the course load for the upcoming school year.

While many classes focus on teaching a curriculum, some classes at Battlefield focus on building leadership skills and character. The Air Force JROTC program does this and so much more. Senior TJ Williams recalls how he first entered into the program, saying that, “in 8th grade the counselors at Battlefield came over and [asked us] ‘what classes do you want to take?’, and I found JROTC and they said it was a military like course and I wanted to mainly learn more about my family and their past.” The JROTC program’s goal is not to force students into wanting to go into the military, as Williams puts it, however he does have military goals in the future. “My number one goal is to become an officer in the air force after four years of college,” he started, “if [my] plans change I [would] like to enlist in the air force as a firefighter.” As an upper cadet and support commander, he has learned many different skills through the program about responsibility, especially through looking out for younger cadets. For those interested in taking this course next year, Williams highly recommends it, saying that, “it’s a great course that teaches you a whole bunch of responsibility, teamwork, [and] leadership skills. It’s a great opportunity for jobs and college applications.”

While these are only a few of the many electives offered here, it is safe to say that Battlefield provides courses for students with a variety of interests. With almost 3,000 students and an extremely diverse population at BHS, any bobcat could take a class that suits their interests!