Mary Star of the Sea High School

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Course Catalog » English Department

English Department

ENGLISH DEPARTMENT


Note: An asterisk (*) following the course title indicates the course meets the 

entrance requirements for UC/CSU when passed with a grade of C or better. 

 
ENGLISH 9 *

Prerequisite: None

Grade 9 1 Year

Instruction in English 9 introduces students to reading and writing at the high school level. Students develop comprehension and critical thinking skills through analysis of all major literary genres. Students develop writing skills while mastering the basic principles of grammar, vocabulary building and construction of sentences, paragraphs and essays. English 9 instruction establishes appreciation for literature and grammatical competence while enhancing communication skills.
 
HONORS ENGLISH 9 *

Prerequisite: HSPT Scores, 8th grade English grades.

Grade 9 1 Year

Instruction in Honors English 9 introduces students to reading and writing at the high school level. Students develop comprehension and critical thinking skills through analysis of all major literary genres. Students develop writing skills while mastering the basic principles of grammar, vocabulary building and construction
of sentences, paragraphs and essays. Honors English 9 establishes appreciation for literature and grammatical competence while enhancing communication skills. Honors English 9 instruction expands on the English 9 course in both depth and breadth of material covered. Levels of reading analysis and literary criticism increase significantly in Honors classes, with greater pace, rigor of grading and quantity of material covered.
 
BRITISH LITERATURE AND COMPOSITION *

Prerequisite: None

Grade 10 1 Year

Instruction in British Literature and Composition introduces students to the work of significant British authors and literary periods. Analysis of key novels, poetry, short stories, works of non-fiction and drama encourages students to develop comprehension and critical thinking skills. Students develop writing skills, both academic and creative, through pre-writing, drafting and editing. In particular, students must hone the persuasive essay — the core academic form of written communication. Additionally students conduct self guided research building their ability to weigh evidence, interpret logically and argue persuasively. Major goals of this course include expanding students’ understanding of Western Civilization while enhancing communication skills. Ideally British Literature and Composition envelops students in the history of the English language, preparing them to explore further how America adapts that language and literature and how this language and literature interacts with others in the world.
 
HONORS BRITISH LITERATURE AND COMPOSITION *

Prerequisites: “B” in Honors English 9 or “A” in English 9; plus departmental approval.

Grade 10 1 Year

Instruction in Honors British Literature and Composition introduces students to the work of significant British authors and literary periods. Analysis of key novels, poetry, short stories, works of non-fiction and drama encourages students to develop comprehension and critical thinking skills. Students develop writing skills, both academic and creative, through pre-writing, drafting and editing. In particular, students must hone the persuasive essay — the core academic form of written communication. Additionally students conduct self-guided research building their ability to weigh evidence, interpret logically and argue persuasively. Major goals of this course include expanding students’ understanding of Western Civilization while enhancing communication skills. Ideally British Literature and Composition envelops students in the history of the English language, preparing them to explore further how America adapts that language and literature and how this language and literature interacts with others in the world. Honors British Literature and Composition instruction expands on the British Literature and Composition course in both depth and breadth of material covered. Levels of reading analysis and literary criticism increase significantly in Honors classes with greater pace, rigor of grading and quantity of material covered.
 
AMERICAN LITERATURE AND COMPOSITION *

Prerequisite: None

Grade 11 1 Year

Instruction in American Literature and Composition guides students to explore the American experience of democracy and free enterprise through the lens of significant American authors and literary periods. Analysis of key novels, poetry, short stories, works of non-fiction and drama encourages students to develop comprehension and critical thinking skills, while considering the unique character of America and Americans. Students develop writing skills through pre-writing, drafting and editing — placing most emphasis on persuasive essay writing. This course requires rigorous effort, asking students to think, work and perform at a truly college preparatory level. Using the panorama of American authors to explore the crucial elements of American culture, students hone the ability to weigh evidence, interpret logically and argue persuasively. Students read, analyze and discuss material both chronologically and thematically, coordinating whenever possible with the United States History curriculum. Major goals of this course include expanding students’ understanding of American culture, applying this understanding to the world today and enhancing overall communication skills.
 

Advanced Placement English Language and Composition *

Prerequisites: “B” in Honors British Literature and Composition or “A” in British Literature and Composition; plus departmental approval.

Grade 11                 1 Year

AP English Language and Composition is a year-long college-level course designed to advance students in their ability to develop critical thinking skills and to further gain confidence in their writing skills through the study of vocabulary, grammar review, and the writing process. This course will strengthen the effectiveness of writing through close reading and frequent practice at applying rhetorical strategies, analyzing information from source texts, and writing arguments. The student will become a critical reader of predominantly nonfiction works, including expository, argumentative, analytical, and personal texts from various authors and time periods. The emphasis of this course is to ensure that all students are familiar with the writing process and are able to write a clear, organized and interesting composition. Students will also gain confidence in their public speaking/oral presentation skills through several oral presentation projects. Students enrolled in this course are required to take the AP English Language and Composition examination in May. The student is required to complete all summer assignments, which will be collected on the first day of AP class in the fall.

 
English 12 *

Prerequisite: None

Grade 12 1 Year

Through a survey of literary works of merit, students will analyze and evaluate the form, content, and contexts of the selected texts. Selections for this course will consist of varied narrative modes: novels, poetry, short fiction, nonfiction, and films from the nineteenth century to the present. Students will study, research and evaluate works of literate and related media from the perspective of the appropriate historical, philosophical, and psychological context. In accordance with the Common Core State Standards, students will develop skills of analysis and critical thinking using the selected texts, then apply these skills to writing persuasive essays supported with relevant textual evidence.

 
ADVANCED PLACEMENT ENGLISH LITERATURE AND COMPOSITION *

Prerequisites: “B” in Honors American Literature or “A” in American Literature; plus departmental approval.

Grade 12 1 Year

Requiring students to think, work and perform at college level, instruction in AP English Literature and Composition prepares students to take the AP English Literature and Composition examination offered by the College Board. Passing grades on the exam afford students college credit for this course, the amount of credit varying with each university. Students hone analytical, critical and evaluative skills while reading and discussing core literary works from the AP suggested reading list or equivalent works. Students cultivate the ability to convey ideas and arguments precisely, orally and in writing advanced essays, both timed and prepared. Typical AP titles include novels, plays, poetry and non-fiction works from the Renaissance through contemporary times and are multi-cultural in origin. All students enrolled in this class are required to take the AP English Literature Examination.