Pearce adopts new humanities class

By Shian Omar | Features Editor

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Freshmen English teacher Katie Kilpatrick assisting freshmen Eliza Kline on her essay. Mrs. Kilpatrick is the probable teacher for the Humanities class if it gets approved.


Humanities is a new class that teachers are bringing into course selection for the next school year. If the course receives enough students signing up, it will be offered.

The class is a year-long elective that some of the English teachers find very beneficial to bring to Pearce. “Its been in the Richardson ISD program of studies for a while, but that doesn’t mean it is offered at every school,” English teacher Katie Kilpatrick said.

If approved, Humanities will be available for both juniors and seniors for the 2014-2015 school year. “They offer it at Richardson High School, and that would be a good model for us to go off of,” English teacher Elizabeth Svadlenak said.

After the students finish selecting their classes on Feb. 28, the principals will look into the enrollment numbers and decide whether or not to offer it.

Mrs. Kilpatrick graduated from Pearce in 2004 and noticed specific patterns in the typical electives offered at the school. “I noticed that we have a lot of science and technology types of electives, everything from robotics to animation, but we didn’t have many liberal arts electives,” Ms. Kilpatrick said. “I asked Mrs. Vance if that’s something we could promote next year, and she said ‘yes’.”

As the registration deadline approaches, many students are making the tedious decision of which classes to select for the upcoming year. “I would have loved to take an interesting class like Humanities, but I don’t have any space for it with all of my classes,” junior Yeonju Park said.

The Humanities course is a broad topic that generally involves understanding what it means to be a human. This includes exploring the literature, history, philosophy, music and overall culture of people. “It is these things that are really special to human beings. Deep inside our core, they make us come alive,” Ms. Kilpatrick said.

The course is not for students who are not intrigued by the big worldly questions. “It is specifically designed for students who are interested in that type of liberal arts emphasis as they move forward in their high school and college careers,” Mrs. Svadlenak said.

There are a lot of profound discussions involved in a humanities class, which allows students to explore and learn about ideas they may not have thought about before.

“We ask deep questions like, what does it mean to be human? What does it mean to be happy? What’s true? What’s beautiful? What’s good?,” Ms. Kilpatrick said. “It’s those big universal questions that all people in all places and all times think about. If you are a person that likes to think about those questions, this is the class for you.”

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