New English Elective to Teach Study Skills

By Imrat Pasha ‘16

A new elective is being offered to freshmen, and it’s called Avid. This class is all about teaching students how to be organized and be self-reliant. This class is taught by Mr. A.  Carter Sinclair and Mr. Levinson.

According to the Assistant Principal of the English department, Ms. Suzanne Thomas, Avid is a class that provides support to students who have potential to be bright and become  successful. This class provides study structures, note taking structures, and peer tutoring.

“We want to make sure that our students are organized because it is difficult to be successful without being organized,” said Ms. Thomas, “If we teach them how to be organized now then it’ll stick with them.”

    In the class, students are required to have binders and their binders are often checked by the teachers. Students also share notes with their peers.

    Ms.Thomas said “It’s not about just taking notes; it’s about interacting with your notes.”

Students use a method of note taking called Cornell Notes in which the paper is divided into two columns. On the right side of the page, students take notes from the lesson, and on the other side, they summarize the key points of the lessons and write down any questions that they have. This note taking method is only useful to students if they review their notes frequently. Students in the class get graded from their Cornell notes.

    Avid teacher Mr. Carter Sinclair says the class is going well so far, and students are able to develop fundamental skills like Cornell Notes which also help students become successful in their other classes. Also, twice a week a student teacher from Hunter college comes to the class to help the students if they are struggling in anysubject areas.

    “I think my favorite thing about this class is Mr. Carter,” said Tamiris Khuseynovi ‘19, “He understands what goes on in our heads.”

Students in the classroom do group work where they learn to annotate articles. Group work helps students better understand the material that they are being taught.

   According to Kei Yin Chen ‘19, their group work helps them understand each other better and gives them a chance to communicate about what’s going on in the class. She also said this class is different from her other classes because the teacher is understanding and he tries to help them with any problems they are facing in school.

So far, Avid is proving to be helpful to incoming freshmen and students are responding positively to this. This class is a college prep class where students learn to organize and become successful through questioning. The structures that they learn in this class will help them be successful in their other classes.

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