Which High School Courses should be Mandatory

Mandatory courses taught in high school should involve health, mathematics, computer skills, English, science, and physical education.

The more information we have in issues pertaining to health, the better informed we are when it comes to taking care of ourselves. Though a level of keeping ourselves safe takes a common sense approach, we don’t know all of the hidden dangers to our health which lurk in the shadows waiting to catch us off guard. Thus, a firm foundation in essential health matters is a must.

Mathematics is essential. If people cannot perform simple math calculations, they will be at a major disadvantage, more so than if they hadn’t learned most other subjects. This is not to say they will use all levels of math in every day life but being able to add, subtract, multiply, and divide is a necessity to being productive and efficient, at home as well as the work place. Being educated in algebra is also beneficial because it helps when faced with situations requiring a logical approach.

Lacking computer skills these days is comparable to being unable to relate efficiently to others. Writing letters by hand is, practically, obsolete and the days of using typewriters are long over. Can you even buy a typewriter nowadays? Computers are essential, not only for completing reports, ledgers, and spreadsheets, among other documents. With an Internet connection, they are invaluable for thoroughly researching topics at a much faster rate than visiting libraries or seeking information from encyclopedias.

English will always be one of the most important subjects. It helps us learn to read and grants us the ability to learn the art of writing, if we are interested. We have the opportunity to enjoy the fruits of others’ imaginations which can inspire us to develop our own.

We learn to read between the lines of conversations or situations because what’s not spoken is, generally, implied. For example, Mary may be talking to John about taking their sick daughter to the hospital. The next time we hear from them they are sitting in the emergency waiting room. Though it’s not stated in conversation, it implies they left their house and took some form of transportation to the hospital. To draw this conclusion incorporates the use of logic.

In English, we also learn to recognize voices such as sarcasm. Given the context of what is written or said, we can tell whether or not a person is being directly honest or being honest through use of sarcasm. For example, Bob shaves his head against his wife’s wishes. Later, when he asks her whether she likes his new look, she rolls her eyes and says, “Of course,” and walks away. We know she is being sarcastic because she really doesn’t like his new look and, by her response, her husband knows it, too.

Science is important, though we may never consciously use all the knowledge we’ve gained and, thus, may easily forget much of what we learned in school. However, we can’t escape science. Even the act of throwing a ball into the air is making use of gravity which is, basically, a law of physics which states that what goes up must come down.

If we don’t know anything about chemistry and disregard warning labels on chemical products, we could innocently create an explosion by mixing two incompatible substances which can injure or even kill a person.

Driving a vehicle from one place to another is making use of motion, a scientific discovery, while using electricity requires the use of energy, another scientific discovery. Asking a doctor’s opinion on an up-coming surgery is making use of medical science. As you can see, even when we don’t think about it, science is part of our every day lives.

Then there’s physical education and, when I was attending school, I wondered why we even had to have such a class. It was boring, doing push ups were hard, I struggled with trying to breathe properly and, during gymnastics sessions, I always needed a note to excuse me because of back troubles.

Who needed gym class? My siblings and I would be outside going for walks, bike riding, chasing each other around playing tag, or throwing a ball or Frisbee. We were active. There was no such thing as sitting in front of a computer or television all day long.

However, nowadays, with so many young people getting caught up in the world of electronics and so many adults employed in sedentary jobs, a structured physical education is a must for everyone just to feel like a decent human-being, and I’m not even touching on the subjects of obesity and the rate of Diabetes, among other things.

Being physically and mentally fit go hand in hand. If we’re lacking in one area, we end up suffering as a result. If we’re competent in both, the sky is the limit.