You Need to Pay Attention in English Class


Abby Tow, Staff Writer

Ask any of the students on campus about their least favorite classes. You’re likely to hear a few people say they hate history, and maybe a few more bash pre-cal, but the sad truth is, English classes seem to always end up on the bottom end of the average student’s favorite classes list. I’ve thought at length about why this is, and I’m certain that it’s because the majority of students don’t see any application in their actual lives outside of academia. Many students, and rightfully so, glean a list of rhetorical devices and find nothing close to useful. But the minute algebra class or chemistry class starts, students seem to have a bit more motivation, or at least a greater willingness to work. Even with all of this considered, I am still convinced: English is important.

The truth is, having a job in STEM, the medical field, or business management is the most popular goal for many high school students here. We all see it fast approaching: a world where tech rules, where a knowledge of computers is the basis of all lucrative occupations. However, English is not simply a class where you learn about literature and grammar. In my English class experiences, especially in accelerated English classes, the discussions are always more in-depth and more relevant than any other class. We learn to form opinions, to back them up with well-thought-out arguments, and to think deeper on issues that aren’t regularly addressed otherwise. It isn’t just about tests and quizzes.

While we as a class don’t always love timed writings, they’re doing more for you than you realize. Being able to articulate your thoughts precisely is a skill that will help you in any job field, and beyond that, advanced communication skills can help preserve and enrich relationships.

Even if you hate the reading we do, it may make you feel a bit better to know that studies show that students who regularly read, which is a requirement in any advanced English class, improves GPAs and enhances your general knowledge. Your cognitive ability improves; your world view broadens.

Whether English is your favorite or least favorite class, it’s bettering you, even if you don’t realize it. So stick it out. It’ll be worth it in the end.