Here Are What the Options Look Like.
In order to make sense of the whole IB thing – for Dylan, and for myself – I studied the IBCP program in great detail. Then I studied the IB program (which will not work for Dylan, for a variety of reasons). Then I studied the most important thing of all: the actual requirements for high school graduation.
Interestingly, there aren’t a lot of requirements to graduate. Dylan gets a choice of a whole slew of classes – almost like college – and just has to decide which path he wants to travel. So I made him lists, to show him what his different path options might look like on any given day.
He will be coming into the school with three high school credits: Algebra I, Physics and Guitar 1. I kept that in mind, and I included a lot of music and P.E., since he loves both. Then I remembered that AP classes hold a ton of weight, since you can (and maybe he will!) get college credit for those.
Here’s what the options look like:
MINIMUM EFFORT (HIGH SCHOOL GRADUATE)
Grade 9: English, Guitar 2, Geometry, Applied Science, U.S. History, General P.E., Chorus
Grade 10: English, Health, Bridge to Algebra II, Biology, World History, Chorus, Volleyball
Grade 11: English, Algebra II, Net Sports, Government, Theater, Piano I, Chorus
Grade 12: English, Pre-Calculus, Foundations of Technology, Basketball, Piano II, Digital Photo, Chorus
ACTUAL EFFORT WITH PASSIONS EMPHASIZED (COLLEGE BOUND)
Grade 9: Honors English, Foundations of Technology, Honors Geometry, Applied Science, U.S. History, P.E., Guitar 2
Grade 10: Honors English, Introduction to Engineering Design, Algebra II, Honors Biology, AP World History, Concert Choir, Honors Health
Grade 11: Honors English, Pre-Calculus, Principals of Engineering, AP Government, TV Production I, AP Music Theory, Chamber Choir
Grade 12: Honors English, Calculus, AP Psychology, Radio Production, Aerospace Engineering, Concert Choir, Chamber Choir
SERIOUS EFFORT WITH SERIOUS FOCUS (IB CAREER-PREP AND COLLEGE BOUND)
Grade 9: Honors English, Guitar 2, Geometry, Applied Science, U.S. History, P.E., Introduction to Engineering Design
Grade 10: Honors English, Honors Health, Algebra II, Biology, World History, Concert Choir, Principles of Engineering
Grade 11: IB English, Pre-Calculus, Digital Electronics, AP Government, Global Information Technology, Net Sports, Chamber Choir
Grade 12: IB English, IB Mathematical Studies, Foundations of Technology, Engineering Design, IB Music, Chamber Choir, Concert Choir
I’ve learned two things from all of this.
1. There are too bloomin’ many choices! … and,
2. It just doesn’t matter all that much which classes he chooses – although it does matter if he gets good grades in whatever he chooses. And that’s going to be another fight altogether.
After all this research and work and plotting and planning, I am so overwhelmed that I’ve had to take a big step backward. At this point, my head begins to swarm with that Doris Day song from my childhood – so many, many years ago…
Que sera, sera… whatever will be, will be.
The future’s not ours to see. Que sera, sera.