Plays Are Not For Extra Credit

Rebecca Gluck, Staff Writer

The hype about the school play has been circulating around school for a few weeks, and you’ve been looking forward to going. When you and your friends are talking about it, someone mentions that a teacher is giving students extra credit for seeing the play, but the play doesn’t have anything to do with that teacher’s subject. It’s unreasonable for teachers to offer plays as extra credit unless it pertains to the subject and a written portion is required.    

Imagine going to a play with a group of friends. If Johnny mentions that he’s getting extra credit for watching the play, wouldn’t you think it was unfair? You’re doing the same thing he’s doing, but because you have different teachers, you aren’t getting any compensation for your time.

It’s just like doing the same assignment as someone else and getting the same answers, but receiving less points than your peer because that teacher assigned a random problem as extra credit. Everyone is engaging in the same activity, but only some are getting rewarded for it.

It would make sense if a history teacher offered going to a play for extra credit if the play was about something related to history. If the play does not relate to the subject, it seems pointless to assign it as extra credit for a particular class because it’s not enriching the student’s knowledge of the subject.

The word “extra” in “extra credit” implies that the student should do more work on the assignment than a normal one. Teachers who offer plays as extra credit should require a write up of the play in which students explain certain aspects of it that are related to the subject and the material being taught in the class.

In 2012, Miramonte produced Hamlet. This Shakespearean tragedy would be an ideal and appropriate play for an English teacher to offer for extra credit. It very likely relates to something in the English curriculum, and a student could discuss the play in a written analysis. This would constitute as extra effort and the student would rightfully earn the extra points.