Around PVHS: The Credits that Seem Half as Fun as Before

Half credit electives. Do you know what classes you can take that don’t give you full credit but are super fun? Well while teachers and students work hard these classes may give you a break and give you excitement. With these electives you are guaranteed fun.


Catalena Sandoval, Journalist

Half credit electives, the sweet glory of not having to take a mandatory class. Half credit electives are classes that give you half the credits than you would usually get as it is called half credit elective. Some of the electives that you can take here are Creative writing taught by Ms. Nelson, Current Events taught by Mr. Pape, Film Studies taught by Mrs. Sprayberry, Mythology taught by Mr. Larssen, and Intro to Business by Mr. Jackson. All these classes you can take as a freshman up to senior year if you would like. 

Creative writing: Ms. Nelson

As I spoke to all the teachers about their classes it was not what I expected. When I spoke to Ms. Nelson about Creative writing and what happens in this class it is not what you think when you first see creative writing. According to Ms. Nelson, In this class, we focus solely on creative writing and its many components.” Creative writing focuses on creating new characters, building story settings and dialogue. The class isn’t necessarily hard if you understand the process of writing a story and stay on top of your work. Learning how to express yourself is difficult for some students but when they are writing it’s easy to express how you feel. Some writers can either learn a lot to help become even better writers than before or use what they have learned for future things. When I spoke to Ms. Nelson about what is most important about this class that she thinks will help her students, her response stuck out to me. “This class… can help my students unlock their creativity and help them learn new tips and tricks to make their writing stand out and come alive.” Ms. Nelson works extremely hard to help her students have the best outcome and hopes that you will maybe take this class, Creative Writing into consideration. 

Intro to business: Mr. Jackson

Mr. Jackson and Mason Montgomery

Business is an important subject for young adults to learn about before graduating. Walmart, Vans, Amazon, Hollister, local shops, grocery stores, and even online stores are examples of businesses that had to go through certain processes to get where they are. In the class, Intro to Business, taught by Mr. Jackson, you will learn about the behind the scenes of creating, running, and working in a business. “We talk about all the different components of a business… developing a product idea for a business, going through the process, then figuring out how to market it” (Jackson). Intro to Business touches on the idea about corporate financing, advertising, taxes, basically how to run and open a business. Mason Montgomery had this to say when asked about what he had learned in Intro to Business, “If I wanted to start a business, I would need a lot of help because it would take a lot of time out of my day.” Last semester, Mr. Jackson’s class had a project where they made their own business. The project taught the students to be creative with their ideas, price their products, come up with logos, catchy names, and overall run a business as if it were to be presented to the real world. If you are interested or curious in learning how to run a business, talk to the consulars and Mr. Jackson about switching into his class next year!

 Film studies: Mrs. Sprayberry

Don’t you just love movies? Because I sure do, and with Mrs. Sprayberry’s help I know you will love them even more. “If you join this class just to watch movies, you’ll be sorely mistaken. There are assignments and they aren’t just questions about the movie. You’ll be asked to research elements of film technology innovation and to analyze a film from 1902 (silent film).” You will also be expected to compare character types and understand the fundamentals of a plot line. Films are so much more than a fun time to relax and enjoy the movie with your friends, it’s about the dedication and time the editors and producer put into it for fans to enjoy. In Mrs. Sprayberry’s class you will also learn how to make films for particular audiences, learn how to criticise films so they can be improved and so much more. “This class offers students with an interest in the film industry to see a realistic perspective of what various jobs and careers there are for them in this field. It also allows students to watch movies and collaborate with their peers on what intent the director/writer had in making a film…It offers visual learners an enjoyable way to practice analyzing media and writing their ideas or critiques instead of having to read a text only” Film Studies is a great way to learn about films ahead of time if that is something you want to do or learn for the feature. So please Mrs. Sprayberry and I encourage you if you are interested to take this class and have some fun. 

Mythology: Mr. Larssen

Myths. That’s probably what you think Mythology is about, well your close but not really. Mythology is the study of ancient cultures, their values and norms. You can also call it  “pre-science,” but mythology is cooler. Now many teachers like to challenge their students but Mr. Larssen’s is different. “I challenge students with interesting questions about culture and myth stories” which is not very difficult but from the looks of it to some students it is difficult. Everyone loves something different and Mr. Larssen loves mythology. I asked him to answer some questions about what are some helpful things his students learn from this class and it was not the answer I thought it would be. “Students learn tropes in mythologies, how religions borrow certain elements from other religions, the hero’s journey according to Joseph Campbell, and how culture influences religion or vice versa.”  If you have any other elective,. I suggest you go to your counselor and get into Mythology because Mr. Larssen will make it worth your while. 

Current Events: Mr. Pape

Local news and newspaper updates. Well Current Events takes care of all of that, and with Mr. Pape’s help you will become more aware of what is going on. Current Events, deals with all the local, national and international news. Mr. Pape and his students investigate the media, government policies and develop their own stands on the issues and events. I asked Mr. Pape to give his students similar questions to help me and other students understand his class more. Ivette Carreon, a Sophomore here at PVHS said, “ Something I learned from this class that has helped me is you have to be open minded about things around you.” When I asked Mr. Pape if his students enjoy this class, his response was very creative, “My students who are engaged and motivated to learn about new things daily will say it’s a fun and enjoyable class but otherwise, haters gonna hate because they are downers.” As I looked over the other student interviews they all seem to enjoy this class and say that on a scale from 1/10 this class is between a 6 to an 8. Now some students learn differently and think that it is interesting. One of the things they learned according to Junior Tyler Perry, is “The U.S national debt and how I’m going to have to help pay it off.” Some students had the same response on how they are going to have to help with the national debt, and be more aware of their surroundings and how they can help. Mr. Pape is definitely a good teacher and he will really spice this class up and encourages you to join if you are interested in learning about the world.