Big screen elective

New Screenwriting class excites its teachers and students.


Nick Quinlan

A student presents his assignment in front of the class.

With so many elective options at SMCHS, there is something for everyone. This year, there has been a new edition to the long list: Screenwriting Honors.

Screenwriting is taught by the passionate movie and video enthusiast, Todd Naylor. Already teaching Digital Video Production and Digital Media Techniques, he is thrilled to finally teach Screenwriting.

“The purpose is to teach students the basics of writing screenplays and to teach students how to come into contact with movie producers and how to market their stories,” Naylor said.

According to Naylor, screenwriting has many real life benefits by improving your writing and making the student stand out on college apps.

“Not many high school students can take screenwriting at their high school, so I thought it would be a good skill to learn before going to a film school,” said junior Nick Quinlan.

Naylor has tried, unsuccessfully, for two years to start Screenwriting. He persevered and recruited kids from his other classes to join, finally making the idea a reality.

In the past, student enrollment for screenwriting was low, slowing down the process of making it an elective. This year, the elective was listed as an honors class, making this the “difference maker” as Naylor describes, to finally becoming a course at SMCHS. For students, a big part of students joining screenwriting is Naylor himself.

“The best part of the class is definitely Mr. Naylor,” Quinlan said. “His humor and love for screenwriting makes the class so enjoyable.”

Naylor ensures that students are doing their best work. By giving students lots of writing assignments and practice, he believes this will allow them to grow as writers and become the best writers.

“As a writer, you have to polish up your skills as much as possible,” Naylor said.

As for homework, Naylor believes in homework that will only benefit the students. He does not want to assign busy work.

“In the beginning of the year it is mostly just practicing writing, but in the second semester their main goal is to write a full screen play,” Naylor said.

With a smaller sized class of sixteen kids, Naylor has more time to spend with each student. This allows every student to get as much feedback from him as possible.

“By being in this class I want to get an upper hand and earlier start on my career,” Quinlan said.

Screenwriting is a class for students who love movies and writing. It gives an opportunity for students to create original stories, have fun, and display their creativity.