English - Secondary





English Grammar and Literature

                The seventh and eighth grade English curriculum has a concentration in grammar, vocabulary and spelling. Composition becomes integrated into the program by intensive writing. This is accomplished through vocabulary tests, original sentences as well as formal writing assignments of compositions and or extensive book reports.

                Reading in depth has its premise in requiring quarterly book reports which include character analyses, setting descriptions, short summaries, and extensive personal evaluations of the reading material.

                Developmental reading now evolves into elements of literature appreciation with a smattering of well-known classical authors as well as some more juvenile readings. Elements of understanding poetry and poetic language are introduced as well as many classical/ contemporary poets. Also memorizing selected poetry is required.


World Literature and Grammar


                The ninth English curriculum has a concentration in grammar, vocabulary and spelling. Composition becomes integrated into the program by intensive writing. This is accomplished through vocabulary tests, original sentences as well as formal writing assignments of compositions and or extensive book reports (The books must have approval from the instructor and have merit in their content as well as writing quality.)

                Literature focuses an historical presentation of world classical authors with a heavy emphasis on poetry and essays. Shakespeare’sJulius Caesar, Sophocles Antigone, Homer’s Odyssey andDante’s Infernohighlights a few of the classics enjoyed by our students. Poetry memorization reflects the works we study to a degree.


American Literature and Grammar


                The tenth grade curriculum focuses on American literature presented in a topical historical format. The textbooks contain two volumes following a somewhat chronological pattern. The American literature aspect has further enhancement by requiring all book reports be done on acceptable American writers.

                Grammar has a review flavor at this level as does spelling. Vocabulary remains an important phase of the curriculum. Poetry memorization focuses on all American poets. In depth study of major works such as The Scarlet Letter by Hawthorne as well as some of Melville’s works and Poe titillate students’ interests. Poetry remains an important study also.


British Literature and Composition

                In the eleventh grade English curriculum, a major shift occurs as grammar becomes much less of an emphasis but does remain an segment of the curriculum    British literature and composition   centralize the course content. Six compositions { per quarter} plus an extensive book report by an acceptable British author become the center of this year of study. Two major Shakespeare plays, Macbeth and Hamlet , along with a study of Anglo Saxon Literature,    other Elizabethan writers, Chaucer and his contemporaries, Puritan writers, as well as other early British classics comprise the first semester’s work in literature. Vocabulary development also details a part of this semester’s work.

                Second semester’s work in literature commences with the Restoration Period and its resultant authors. The study of Defoe and his renowned work introduces the concept of the novel. The study of the Victorian Period with his resplendency of literature occupies a great part of this semester. This period culminates with a study of Thomas Hardy and as many describe it—his unequivocal masterpiece--The Return of the Native.

                Modern Literature and Modern Poetry finish this year’s studies in literature. We replace our intensive vocabulary study of the first semester with the memorization of approximately sixteen works of poetry garnered from our study of poets of the first and second semesters.

                The writing aspect of the course continues with most of the topics having their core related to the British literature under study. Rough drafts showing editing are a necessary element to this writing . It might be also noted here that examinations on the literature studied include rather long, detailed essay questions.


Research  and Speech



                The content of the grade twelve English program deviates the most from the criteria which has previously been noted.

                This course has its basic intent on developing skills to research and write resultant research papers. We work with a few tools: a basic work book and manual counterpart as well as the MLA Handbook. We have chosen this handbook as a guide for a style format after carefully questioning graduates of our own secondary school as well as others. We also have checked with colleges and universities to determine which format they use most frequently .

                During the semester eight assigned papers are required: These a include a myriad of possible topical interest:

1.       Development of a personal vitae

2.       Investigations into three schools of higher learning as related to career choices

3.       Study of an aspect of Evangeline by Longfellow

4.       Study of an aspect of Romeo and Juliet by Shakespeare

5.       Study of an aspect of Merchant and Venice by Shakespeare

6.       Development of both sides of a controversial question

7.       Review of a book utilizing others’ reviews as well as personal evaluation

8.       Research of a topic particularly engrossing to writer

It may be noted that in-depth studies of the literature studies as well as examinations parallel those topic areas.

                Class- instigated vocabulary lists add a different flavor to the course. Various teams bring lists of words to their class mates each week. Teacher-created tests finish these weekly presentations.

                The second semester of this program focuses on speech. Each student is required to present sixteen speeches of various types. Each student must evaluate everyone of his peers’ speeches giving a grade for each by using a standardized format. The instructor culls all these evaluations; she then types them using an anonymous procedure and returns the comments to each student. A grade manufactured from instructor’s evaluation and students’ evaluation is then attributed to each speech.

                In addition each student is required to participate in the school announcement program throughout the entire year. This work is factored into the final grade. Studies of individual speech types proceed each speech. Research on most topics is required and documented on speech outlines. Tests are also given to ascertain if the speech course content has become clear.