By Samuel Bekker ’17
One of the craziest and most competitive parts of the school year is the application process for electives and Advanced Placement (A.P.) classes.
This year, students will be choosing certain electives, selectives, and A.P. classes depending their grade level. Electives are classes that students wish to take, in addition to their regularly scheduled classes. Selectives are classes that are mandatory and a student must choose a class that they are willing to take. A.P. classes are college-level courses which students choose to take in place of another elective.
A variety of factors, such as students’ choices and teachers’ willingness to teach the class, influence the courses being offered in certain subjects.
Mr. Alan Stack said that Midwood offers space for classes based on students’ desire to take the class and budget availability. Teachers’ desire to teach the class is usually not an issue.
The English Department is offering a multitude of selective classes, such as Journalism, Creative Writing, and American Classics for rising juniors, as well as, Debate and Rhetoric, Art and Literature, Drama, True Crimes, Scientific Non Fiction, and a yearbook class for rising seniors.
Art and Literature is an art-based class, where students will begin learning about Renaissance European art and will move to learning about art from various cultures. Also, students will read books that were inspired by visual art.
Drama is a class that will introduce students to the nature of theater as a performing art. Students will look at plays from the perspectives of directors and actors, as well as focus on acting and the development of characters through improvisation, exercises, and techniques.
True Crimes is a course that is based on the genre of mystery, where students will analyze and solve each mystery that they will read about in class.
Scientific Non Fiction is a class where students will read texts with some type of scientific element in them.
Debate and Rhetoric is a public speaking class, which includes aspects of rhetoric.
Moreover, Midwood gives students the opportunity to take A.P. English classes, such as A.P. English Language and Composition and A.P. English Literature and Composition.
A.P. English Language and Composition is a course that focuses on rhetorical criticism in non-fictional texts and how a writer uses rhetoric, to get points across.
A.P. English Literature and Composition, on the other hand, focuses on literary criticism and how to analyze and interpret a fictional text.
“I love A.P. English Literature and Composition. The class is fun and it is interesting to see people in groups, who are discussing a book with multiple interpretations,” said Ashley Eaton ’17.
Ms. Suzane Thomas said that the difference that makes this year distinguishable from previous years is the disappearance of the option to apply to both A.P. English classes. In previous years, students were able to apply to both A.P. English Language and Composition and A.P. English Literature and Composition. This year, however, students must select only one of the A.P. English courses to apply to.
In addition, Midwood offers multiple A.P. Mathematics classes. In particular, there is a relatively new class called A.P. Computer Science A.
“I enjoy taking A.P. Computer Science. It’s an interesting class that I think everyone should take at some point,” said Andrey Goryuk ’17.
The Science Department is offering several science courses and is incorporating technology into the application process for these classes.
Among these A.P. Science classes is A.P. Physics C, which is one of the many rigorous science classes in the school.
“Personally, I like taking A.P. Physics C. In order to succeed in the class, I recommend being passionate about physics and being capable of visual and mathematical thinking,” said Samuel Makarovskiy ’16.
In order to apply to A.P. Science classes this year, students must fill out an online Google form.
Similar to the Science Department, the Social Studies Department is offering A.P. classes, such as A.P. United States History and A.P. Government and Economics, where students must fill out an online Google form in order to apply.
“I highly recommend taking A.P. Government and Economics. The class is a much better alternative to regular government and economics because the material is a lot more in depth and the workload isn’t as laborious compared to other A.P. classes,” said Kieran Bissessar ’16.
If a student wishes to learn more about the Spanish language, they can take A.P. Spanish, which is offered by the Foreign Language Department.