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English Department


  • Students synthesize literary experiences to broaden perspectives on the human condition.
  • Students demonstrate a knowledge of literal meaning.
  • Students demonstrate an understanding of figurative and inferential meaning.
  • Students utilize a variety of strategies to access and understand different texts.
  • Students produce clear and coherent analytic and reflective writing in which the development, organization, and style are appropriate to task, purpose, and audience.
  • Students select pertinent supporting details and examples.
  • Students use standard English conventions.
  • Students edit and revise written work.
  • Students evaluate a speaker’s point of view, reasoning, and use of evidence and rhetoric.
  • Students present information, findings, and supporting evidence such that listeners can follow the line of reasoning and the organization, development, and style are appropriate to task, purpose, and audience.

Language Arts Philosophy

Language Arts consists of the interdependent and coequal components of listening, speaking, reading, and writing. Developed through use and embracing all disciplines, the instruction of language demands interaction between and integration of Language Arts and other curricular areas.

Every student has unique intellectual, physical, social and emotional needs which must be addressed within a developmentally responsive and relevant curriculum. Aware of the differences in student skills, abilities and personalities, and of our own adaptive and creative facilities as professionals, we must exercise an elastic approach to teaching, developing a variety of strategies for targeting different learning styles.

We believe that a Language Arts curriculum must provide opportunities for students to value language, gain insight into themselves and others, acquire a rich appreciation of various written forms, pursue life-long learning, express themselves clearly and experience the enjoyment that is inherent in effective communication. Implicit in a mastery of expository and analytical writing is an understanding of accompanying reading comprehension and analytical skills. This curriculum also stresses exposure to a wide range of texts, including fiction and non-fiction, classic and contemporary works.

In each grade there will be a continuation of the previous level’s skills with appropriately advanced sophistication of application. Computers, telecommunications and other tools of technology will be used to conduct research, to gather and synthesize information and to communicate knowledge. Skills are taught using all elements of Bloom’s Taxonomy. The ninth grade curriculum will focus on knowledge and comprehension; the tenth, application and analysis; the eleventh and twelfth, synthesis and evaluation.

This curriculum fosters an appreciation of the rich resources of the English language as a foundation for the development of critical, analytical, and introspective thinking and communication skills.

Students in grades 9 and 10 may only take one level of English per year.