Many students in your class complain of boredom throughout the day, and we understand that this can be disheartening.

But what if there was a more productive way to counteract this claim? Luckily, we have the answer right here for you – electives! These after-hours activities will combat the stereotype of school being boring and teach your children the true meaning of enjoyment within the classroom. All they have to do is sign up!

If you don’t know what an elective is, read on.

Education resources


What is an elective?

An elective is an optional class that can be taken outside of the typical teaching hours. It can function similarly to a society or club where students gather to enhance skills within their chosen hobbies or engage in new and exciting opportunities to get involved in the world around them and the school community.

The concept of choice can be hard to teach in any class, particularly when they have no other option to attend school. But when they are offered side-line activities to enrich their typical day in that environment, this can help them to formulate a better understanding of themselves and the kind of interests they want to explore when they are adults. Examples of these can range from theatre productions to musical performances, either arranged by the children or yourself – collaboration can be an option too. They can be immensely good fun and bring out many unexpected qualities in your students, so all schools should implement them when the opportunity to do so presents itself.

If you are stuck for ideas, here is a list to get you started.

Middle school electives


It may seem thoroughly outdated to teach a class how to knit. We have become so reliant on fast fashion and high street clothes stores that the thought of making our clothes has not crossed our minds, never mind our children’s! However, there are many benefits from having an elective in this skill that combats mass production and waste and creates more personalized options within these accessories.

Teens will be able to make their warm clothing for winter, cute gifts for babies, and even the rest of their family from any colored ball of wool. With a lot of time and dedication, knitting can construct anything from plush toys and tea cozies to wearable goods such as hats, scarves, and cardigans. They make great to sell online and display around the home.


Chess is an old game spanning back to the 15th century. In a highly competitive play between two individuals, plenty of strategies are waiting for your elective class to learn. Children will be able to learn about the pawns, kings, and queens, alongside their valid moves on the board, and work up to playing in real competitions against their peers and staff members. Plenty of opportunities for other forms of entertainment can be engaged within these classes, such as streaming the Netflix show “The Queen’s Gambit,” which popularised the show for younger teen audiences. Your new team will have a great time watching this series and pointing out their new skills being shown on screen.


Without journalism, we would know very little about the current affairs around us, so we must teach research and writing skills to the younger generation. Many teenagers might like to try for a job in the local newspaper when they graduate, and providing an elective in this study area could help inspire them going forward. Why not allow your students to choose their own story to research, one which is happening in the village or town you are located in, and teach them the skills necessary to compile their finished piece – a news article, to be published in your school magazine?

Orchestra playing

Does anyone in your school play a musical instrument? There could be a place for them in an orchestral or ensemble elective. There are lots of instruments waiting to be learned. Whether they find their beat in a clarinet, trumpet, or kazoo, anyone can join in when it comes to creating a school orchestra. This is the perfect environment for players to come together and discuss how their lessons are going or a new piece of music they love to perform. It can help to set them up for a career in music and get them involved in all that it has to offer, such as its vibrant community and potential for forming lifelong friends.

Art classes

Budding artists love to have a space to express their talents, so why not have a series of electives wherein you can teach them new skills, such as life drawing and how to pick great color palettes for their next masterpiece? You could even have a gallery at the end, which can be presented to the school. Let your students curate their own spaces where they can show off their work as well as celebrate the success of others. You do not have to supply your materials if you cannot afford them –your students can be encouraged to buy their own and work with whatever they fancy.

Women’s History

Women’s history tends to be overlooked in the school curriculum, so having an elective course where female students can learn about motivational people such as themselves is an excellent opportunity to inspire and instill their confidence. Teach them about the hundreds of famous feminine icons, such as Queen Victoria, Cleopatra, and Anne Frank – some of the historical faces who contributed to large successes in the world, and even talk about the new idols such as Princess Diana and Madonna, who both underwent various challenges in their lives to get to where they wanted to be.

Foreign languages

Learning a new language is a great way to increase diverse tolerance towards other countries and ethnic groups when a teenager is at school and has not yet witnessed the vast breadth of other continents to explore. Alongside many other benefits, a language learning elective can bring an abundance of confidence to those who take up the challenge, not to mention that you can also use what you learn in the real world. Your students will be able to speak the native tongue of their country during their next family holiday.

Theatre performance

There isn’t anything much better that promotes teamwork and expression of creativity than student production. Frequently taking place outside of teaching hours, these productions could entail any script, modern or old, picked by the students or picked by you. This is also a fantastic way of teaching your classes about the beauty of art and culture by having them perform these historic scripts, in the case of William Shakespeare or Arthur Miller. The participating students will initially have a challenge stumbling over the words written by these famous archaic writers. Still, they will reap the reward of putting on a successful play at the end of the elective. Plus, you can invite the rest of the school to watch the final performance of their hard work – and parents too.

So, are you ready to implement some electives into your school? Get started today!