English

Primary

ENGLISH 7

The purpose of this course is to introduce key literary elements and writing techniques to the entering middle level students. Students will read a wide selection of modern, age-appropriate literature while learning new genres including novels, short stories, drama and poetry. Students will develop a better understanding of basic literary terminology while exploring elements of the humanities. Students will become familiar with note-taking and library research skills, culminating in a 5-8 page research paper at the end of the year. Seventh graders are required to work individually and in groups to develop stronger critical thinking skills through various activities and projects. They will focus on increasing reading comprehension and writing accuracy, as well as listening and speaking skills, in order to meet the New York State middle level English assessment. Tests, quizzes, as well as grammar lessons and vocabulary are given on a regular basis to target and improve problem areas.

ENGLISH 8

A broad range of skills will be covered in this class in preparation for the 8th grade ELA examination. Students will be challenged to think and write critically and draw inferences from what they have read. At the conclusion of each novel and unit test, there will be a thematic essay, which will require students to use evidence from what they have read to support their ideas. Basic rudiments of spelling, grammar, and vocabulary will be covered throughout the course. In an effort to expose students to a broad range of literary genres, students will examine historical fiction, mystery, adventure, short stories, poetry, and plays. Vocabulary, critical reading skills, thematic essays, and Socratic seminars will be incorporated into the classroom to supplement reading materials. Persuasive writing, descriptive writing, business letters, creative and formal writing will be stressed as well.

ENGLISH 9

1 Credit

This course begins with a study of poetry, with a focus on literary devices, “voice,” poetic structures and writing techniques. Students read a variety of genres, both independently and as a class. The study of vocabulary and spelling is done throughout the year, supplemented with mini-grammar lessons. Additionally, the importance of legible handwriting is enforced. Students work in groups and individually to use and improve speaking and listening skills through projects and presentations. Writing pieces include: creative writing, analytical, personal response, critical lens, and persuasive essays. Students are expected to complete a research project 5-7 pages in length. Students will read short stories and both British and American literature. Reading selections include, but are not limited to, Romeo and Juliet, Speak, and Lord of the Flies.

ENGLISH 9 HONORS

1 Credit

The English 9 Honors course is designed for students who demonstrate above-average skills in reading and writing. Class discussions and writing assignments are created as a vehicle for using critical thinking skills. Analysis and application of ideas are an important part of this course. Students will read Romeo and Juliet, and To Kill a Mockingbird, while other reading selections will differ from the standard English 9. English 9 Honors is for the student who has a high-level interest in language arts and is interested in a more challenging course.

ENGLISH 10

1 Credit

This is a standard, Regents-level English course for students in their sophomore year. Students will receive instruction in a variety of English-based skills, including elements of reading, writing, listening and speaking. Of course, all of these elements will be approached, whenever possible, in interesting and innovative ways. Students will read short stories, such as a selection from Edgar Allan Poe; some poetry, including a selection of contemporary poets; The Rime of the Ancient Mariner by Robert Louis Stevenson; several novels, such as Ordinary People by Judith Guest and The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho; and plays, such as Brighton Beach Memoirs by Neil Simon and Hamlet by William Shakespeare. In addition, there will be innovative units on fairy/folk tales, gender perspectives, and story-arc and theme analysis through use of popular films such as The Shawshank Redemption. All standard writing formats are covered in this course, including creative, analytical, and personal response. Although no term paper is assigned, students can expect to write several 3-5 page, typed analytical papers, complete with annotated textual references (in the form of identified direct quotes and paraphrases) throughout the academic year.

ENGLISH 10 HONORS

1 Credit

This is an Honors-level English course for students in their sophomore year. The course is similar to the Regents-level English 10 course in regard to basic skill development and practice. However, students in this class undertake a wider scope and depth of study in literature and English skills, and must be ready and able to engage in the work at a deeper level to be successful in this class. In addition, different literature selections are offered to 10H students, and work generally proceeds at a swifter pace. Along with innovative units on gender perspectives and story-arc theme analysis through the use of popular film, students will receive instruction in reading and writing connected to literary classics such as Beowulf (anonymous epic); Grendel, by John Gardner; Frankenstein, by Mary Shelley; works of Jonathan Swift; Hamlet by William Shakespeare; poetry of Wordsworth, Shelley, Blake, and Stevenson; Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales, and the Tales Of King Arthur And His Knights Of The Round Table, among others. All standard writing formats are covered in this course, including creative, analytical, and personal response. Although no term paper is assigned, students can expect to write several 3-5 page typed analytical papers, complete with annotated textual references in the form of identified direct quotes and paraphrases throughout the academic year.

ENGLISH 11

1 Credit

Becoming more active readers, writers, speakers, and thinkers is the main goal of the English 11R curriculum. Throughout this course, students will read novels, essays, plays, short stories, and poetry. Students will also engage in a variety of writing assignments, including essays, short papers, plays, short stories, articles, journals, poetry, and speeches. They will also prepare for the Comprehensive Regents exam in January.

ENGLISH 11 HONORS

1 Credit

Becoming more insightful and talented readers, writers, speakers, and thinkers is the main goal of the English 11H curriculum. Students will read challenging and thoughtful material that will expand their knowledge and their writing ability. Students taking this class will need to be able to work independently on reading material that will be used for long-term assignments while they are also working on class material that they are studying at the time. Time is also spent on SAT preparation and on vocabulary building.

READING LITERATURE (SUNYA ENG121L)

1 Credit (High School)

3 Credits (College)

(Grade 12)

Pre-requisite – English 11H average of 89 or better, or by arrangement of teacher/parent meeting

Offered under the auspices of SUNY-Albany’s University in the High School Program, the aim of this course is to immerse students in the reading and analysis (in thought and writing) of literature, with selections from fiction, poetry, and drama. This course demands students read approximately 150 pages of new material per week, with an average of writings (both analytical and responsive) of 1,000-1,500 words per week. In addition, several sustained critical papers 5-10 pages in length and one major term paper per semester (20-25 pages) are required. Students will read texts closely and be expected to engage in thoughtful, critical discourse verbally in class and on paper. The fundamental task is to develop each individual’s ability to read well and inventively, and to write with intellectual insight about what they’ve read.

Electives

PUBLIC SPEAKING

½ Credit (half year)

(Grade 12)

Understanding the communication process is a key concept covered in this class. By examining the roles of verbal and nonverbal communication and analyzing the audience when selecting, developing, and presenting a topic, students develop a keen awareness of the many aspects that come into play when speaking publicly. Through a variety of speech experiences that cover personal speeches, speeches to share information, persuasive speeches, social speeches, contest speeches, business and career speeches, and speeches for mass media, students will learn how to gather and present material in a variety of formats. Students will also participate in evaluations of themselves and others as part of the learning process.

SPORTS JOURNALISM

½ credit

(Grades 10, 11 & 12)

The right topic can capture the interest of even the most reluctant writers. Sports Journalism will provide the perfect blend for sports fanatics and aspiring writers. Knowledge and interest in sports is an important prerequisite for this course. This course is writing intensive and will require students to carry their written work through the writing process in an expedient manner. Ideal candidates for this course will be detail-oriented, responsible, and interested in sports. The ability to produce writing quickly will also be an important quality as newspapers print articles of sporting events the following day. Sports Journalism is the ideal course for the student who wants to keep up with local and professional sports, while also improving his or her writing skills.

FILM STUDIES

½ Credit

(Grades 11 & 12)

Distance Learning Class

Pre-requisite: teacher recommendation

WRITING A NOVEL

½ Credit

(Grades 11 & 12)

Distance Learning Class

Pre-requisite: teacher recommendation

Students in this class will examine the structure of successful novel writing, using Christopher Vogler’s The Hero’s Journey as one of the basic texts. Writing exercises on characterization, dialogue, setting, use of the senses, synopsis writing and plot structure will be included. Also, students will receive instruction in the process of successful submission to agents and editors. The course’s culminating event will be the completion of a novel “partial” and cover letter, ready to send to the student’s selected editor or agent.

CHILDREN’S LITERATURE

½ Credit

(Grades 11 & 12)

Distance Learning Class

The purpose of this course is to acquaint students with the various themes that run through all children’s literature. This course will help students develop an awareness of the different types of children’s literature and provide a critical basis for evaluation of this literature. Analysis of the artwork that appears in these books will be an integral part of this course. There will be an emphasis on how children’s literature can be used to teach a variety of ethnic, moral, social, and educational concepts. Students will be expected to create storybooks.

POPULAR YOUNG ADULT LITERATURE

½ credit

Grades 11 and 12

Distance Learning

This course will introduce students to popular young adult literature by examining various genres and significant authors and trends. Students will examine the use of a variety of literary elements as a tool to analyze and evaluate each other’s purpose. Through in-class reading, students will have the opportunity to explore issues and personal and social contacts relevant to their own lives, in an attempt to find parallels between their lives and those encountered by the characters. Since literature is sometimes controversial in the junior high and high school context, the issue of censorship will be discussed and assessed. The course will also use various film and media sources appropriate to the study of young adult literature.