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2017-18 CVA Course of Study Handbook – English Department


English 9—9th Grade (1 credit)

This course addresses the four components of language instruction. Students will read, write, listen and speak for a variety of purposes. These skills will be applied to literary response, critical analysis, and situations involving social interaction. Writing is coordinated with reading and developed through skill activities and process writing. There is a focus on expository research, vocabulary development, literary analysis and reading skills. The required literature includes nonfiction (biographies, essays and memoirs), fiction, poetry and drama.

English 10—10th Grade (1 credit)

A variety of literary forms are covered, including novels, short stories, drama, poetry and nonfiction forms such as journals, speeches and biographies. Writing is integrated with and in response to reading and discussion of the various forms of literature. The process approach to writing (pre-writing exercises, composing, revising, editing and final draft) is used to develop writing skills. Grammar study is an integral part of this process.

English 11 CC (R)—11th Grade (1 credit)

The focus is on American literature covering authors from the colonial period to the present. Literature includes novels, short stories, drama, poetry and a variety of non-fiction forms. Composition is integrated with and in response to the reading and discussion of various forms of literature and encompasses a variety of expositive, persuasive and imaginative forms. The Writing Process is emphasized and grammar instruction is integrated through composition. Group discussion, analysis and personal response are stressed. The English Language Arts Regents Exam is administered at the middle of the course in January.

English 12—12th Grade (1 credit)

This is a college preparatory course designed to have students approach, interpret and comprehend literature on a higher level. There is an emphasis on the establishment and improvement of the following skills: close reading and analysis, thoughtful expression, writing in various forms, speaking, listening and presenting.

English Electives

English 9 (Honors)—9th Grade (1 credit)

This course offers a deeper study of prose and poetry with an emphasis on PSAT/SAT vocabulary. A number of classics and expository works will be explored and students will be assigned writing tasks that will prepare them for advanced classes. Additionally, students will be required to give speeches and presentations, work collaboratively and use technology over the year. To be eligible for this course, students must have a teacher recommendation, a 3 or 4 score on the 8th grade ELA Test and an 85 or above average in English 8 Honors or 90 or above average in regular English.

English 10 (Honors)—10th Grade (1 credit)

The English 10H curriculum is essentially the same as English 10, in that we will be reading the same texts and working on the same types of reading worksheets/note taking. In addition, English 10H students might be reading from Le Mort D’Arthur, Wuthering Heights, Tess of the D’Urbervilles, The Jungle, Beneath the Wheel and/or other texts. Along with each text completed, students will be reading poetry germane to the text and students will write essays comparing the two. Students will be asked to complete ancillary reading and writing assignments, and we will be working as much as possible in coordination with the social studies curriculum.

English 11 CC (R) (Honors)—11th Grade (1 credit)

This course will encompass literature and written expression vital for the ELA Common Core Regents exam. The students will read classic works of literature in addition to non-fiction and poetry. The course will incorporate descriptive, persuasive, expository and research writing as well as a focus on the close reading and analysis of passages. The second half of the course will help prepare students for AP English. This class will move at a faster pace than a regular English 11 class would.

Advanced Placement English – Language & Composition—11th-12th Grade (1 credit)

In the AP course in English Language, students are engaged in the careful reading of literary works. Through such study, they sharpen their awareness of language and their understanding of the writer’s craft. They develop critical standards for the independent appreciation of any literary work, and they increase their sensitivity to language generally. Writing assignments will focus on the critical analysis of literature and will include essays in exposition and argument. Assignments in personal narrative and the writing of stories, poems or plays may also be appropriate in achieving the goals of effective use of language and the organization of ideas in a clear, coherent and persuasive way. While potential enrollees should be capable students, motivation and commitment to serious study is just as important for success in this rigorous and demanding course. Students are expected to take the AP exam in May. Literary works that are studied include 1989 and Brave New World. Prerequisite: Students must have an overall average of an 85 in English 10 or an 85 in English 11, and a score of at least 80 on the English Regents.

Advanced Placement English – Literature & Composition—12th Grade (1 credit)

The AP English Literature and Composition course aligns to an introductory college-level literary analysis course. The course engages students in the close reading and critical analysis of imaginative literature to deepen their understanding of the ways writers use language to provide both meaning and pleasure. As they read, students consider a work’s structure, style, and themes, as well as its use of figurative language, imagery, symbolism, and tone. Writing assignments include expository, analytical, and argumentative essays that require students to analyze and interpret literary works. Prerequisite: Students must have an overall average of a 90 in English 11 or an overall average of an 85 in AP Language and Composition, and a score of at least an 80 on the English Regents.

College English 111 – Composition (College Now)—12th Grade (.5 cred./3 college credits)

This course is designed as an intensive writing course that covers the following stages of writing: preliminary thought and discussion, research, organization, writing, revising and editing. Students produce at least ten pages of formal prose intended for a critical reader, as well as, at least 15 pages of informal work, such as a personal journal. Students work in traditional rhetorical forms and write a research paper. Prerequisite: Students must earn at least an 80 overall average in English 11, and a score of at least an 80 on the English Regents.

College English 112 – Literature (College Now)—12th Grade (.5 cred./3 college credits)

This course is designed as an introduction to literary genres leading to a greater appreciation of fiction, poetry, and drama. Prerequisite: Students must earn at least a 75 overall average in College English 111.

Movies & Documentaries—11th -12th Grade (.5 credit)

There are many videos and films that deal with important social issues. The films / documentaries will be viewed. Discussion and debate will be the focus of the class.

Sports & Society—11th -12th Grade (.5 credit)

A study of literary works from a sporting perspective. Choices include Brian’s Song, The Winner Within, Eight Men Out, Hoop Dreams and player/athlete biographies. There will be a focus on the theme of the human spirit overcoming struggles and obstacles through involvement with teams and sports. The core concept of the course is a reflection on how sports impact our society.

Journalism—11th -12th Grade (.5 credit)

This is an introductory course on the principles and practices of journalism. The course includes: fact-gathering, developing interviewing skills, writing news stories, determining news worthiness, studying and applying editing skills, and journalistic styles. Students will also be using and applying the techniques of writing headlines and captions.

Public Speaking (College Now)—11th -12th Grade (.5 credit/3 college credits)

Students will be introduced to public speaking as an important component of their academic, work and social lives. They will study public speaking occasions and develop skills as fair and critical listeners, or consumers, of spoken information and persuasion. They will look at many types of speeches (informative, persuasive, dramatic and special occasion), read and listen to models of speeches, and prepare and present their own speeches to diverse audiences. Students will learn to choose speaking topics and adapt them for specific audiences, to research and support their ideas and to benefit from listener feedback. They will also study how to incorporate well-designed visual and multimedia aids in presentations and how to maintain a credible presence in the digital world. The ethics of public speaking will be taught, as well as exploration of techniques for managing communication anxiety.

Monsters in Literature & Film—10th -12th Grade (1 credit)

This course will explore the dynamics of horror, ancient to contemporary, with special attention to monsters as dark-side manifestations of cultural values. What do we label as “monstrous” and why? What makes a successful monster at a given time? The word monstro has its roots in the Latin word “to show.” This course will explore how monstrous characters show us as readers/viewers about our own human flaws, fears and perceptions by looking at “monsters” (both figurative and literal) in literature, poetry and film. Critical reading in different genres will allow students to understand why these authors have used (and continue to use!) monsters to convey pivotal themes in classic works of literature; moreover, we will explore how these authors employ characterization, technique, symbolism and subject matter to tell their tales. Students will examine the figure of the monster in literature, popular culture, and film, focusing on some key questions to help us understand and theorize monsters. Why do we seek out the monstrous and horrifying? What do our monsters reveal about us? What’s the relationship between monsters and the times? How (and why) do we pass on stories of things that terrify us?

SAT Prep Class/English—10th-12th Grade (.5 credit)

This class is designed for students who are preparing to take the PSAT/SAT exams. This class will focus on the format of the test and how the test is graded. Grammar, mechanics, usage, vocabulary and close reading will be focal points of the class in order to ensure student success. Testing tips and modeling will be provided.

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