Practical Classes: Dying Classes Should be Built Back Up

Nowadays, schools focus on academic classes, forgetting about the needed practical classes that teach practical skills that students need


Cartoon by Sristi Palimar

Have you ever heard your parents talk about cooking and woodshop classes and thought to yourself, Woodshop, what’s that? Cooking, you did that in school? This is probably because these types of classes are just not very common anymore. Over the years, these classes have declined in popularity even though they can provide useful skills.

I have to admit that I am pretty bad at cooking and working with my hands. I wish Woodbridge offered practical classes because they would prepare me for life outside of school. Practical classes are important because some day students will have to pay taxes, cook their own meals or fix things around the house. This is why classes like finance, cooking and woodshop classes for example would be beneficial. While Woodbridge High has an auto shop class which is a practical class and teaches students about cars, there are more practical classes that should be included.

Auto shop is a class that teaches students useful skills such as maintenance and light repair. Learning about cars is important since some day if a student wants to do maintenance of their car, they may have trouble with it without useful knowledge of cars and useful skills. Also working with cars can be a career for students in the future.

“We prepare students for college and entry level positions in the automotive field,” auto teacher Thomas Misich said.

In woodshop class, students learn how to build the shape of their choice out of wood and how to use hand tools, power tools and woodworking machinery. This is a class that is practical since it could increase skills in fixing things since the students work with their hands in this class. Students need exposure to a class where they work with their hands. If a student later in life wants to fix a cabinet to save money, they may have a lot trouble with it since most high schools don’t offer woodshop classes.

“[Woodshop] allows you to express your creativity. It helps you with things you want to do at home,” junior Rolan Neimond said.

Cooking is a practical class since students need to know how to cook after high school, allowing them to gain more independence. This class would give students a jump start and provide them with useful skills. Often times people don’t have much free time to improve cooking skills, so later in life if a person didn’t take a cooking class in school, they may find difficulty in cooking. A cooking class would make life for students so much easier in the future. A class like finance would make students’ lives easier in the future since they would not have to stress as much about money management and taxes later on in life.

“[Practical classes] are good for students to learn about life outside of school rather than the just the main math, english, science and history classes. It’s good to have those other skills you’ll need in regular life,” English teacher Jeff Alexander said.

Alexander also added that he himself took a woodshop class which served as a valuable experience for him.

“In high school I took woodshop. We would make things and it helped me learn at a young age how to be a handyman,” Alexander said.

Along with the fact that cooking and woodshop classes are practical, they could also be careers for students in the future. If a student decides that they really likes the cooking class they might decide to be a chef. If a student really like a woodshop class they might decide to be an architect. If a student really like a finance class, they might decide to be an accountant. These classes could allow students to find out more about what their interests are.

“[Practical classes] would give [students] skills that are part of everyday life. It might be something that is an interest for [a student] or a career even,” Alexander said.

If additional practical classes were included at Woodbridge, they would provide needed skills or even career ideas to students who decide to take these classes.