LSM English Department Course Offerings

English Language Arts

 

 All students are required to take four years of English Language Arts (ELA).  All ELA courses use the Common Core Standards as their guide to prepare students to be college and career ready in literacy. Students will focus on a variety of genres and will develop skills in reading, writing, speaking, listening and language.  Additionally, all core courses will contain vocabulary and grammar components. 

 

Literacy Workshop (#1309)                                                               Level 2      Grades 9, 10, 11, & 12

Credits: up to 1 credit                                                                                                               Full-Year

Prerequisite: Teacher Recommendation

Literacy Workshop is an intervention designed for select students in grades 9 through 12 who require intensive and focused support in reading, writing, and researching. Students will learn a variety of strategies to improve their reading, writing and researching skills. A major goal of this intervention class is for students to continuously improve, overcome setbacks, and maximize their potential.  Students will transfer the acquired skills from Literacy Workshop to their content area classes in order to achieve academic excellence. This course cannot be applied toward the required 4 credits of English.

 

 

English 9 (#162)                                                                              Level 2                                 Grade 9

Credits:  1.00                                                                                                                               Full-Year

English 9 engages students in a reader's/writer's workshop model to develop critical reading skills and the ability to deftly navigate the writing process. In each unit, students read in, and analyze, a particular genre, including exposure to reading within the content areas of science and social studies. As we read anchor and mentor texts, students extend the lessons and skills from class to their independent reading selections. Additionally, students apply the attributes found in these anchor texts to develop their own original pieces across genres, from op-eds to short stories to nonfiction feature articles. Research is an integral part of developing many of these writing portfolio pieces. Throughout the year, students apply different critical lenses, including the examination of the historical accuracy of select works of fiction. In addition to reading and writing in prose and poetry, students practice visual literacy skills, dissect documentaries, and develop position papers.

 

English 9 (#160)                                                                            Level 1                                   Grade 9

Credits:  1.00                                                                                                                              
Full-Year

English 9 engages students in a reader's/writer's workshop model to develop critical reading skills and the ability to deftly navigate the writing process. In each unit, students read in, and analyze, a particular genre, including exposure to reading within the content areas of science and social studies. As we read anchor and mentor texts, students extend the lessons and skills from class to independent reading selections. Additionally, students apply the attributes found in these anchor texts to develop their own original pieces across genres, from op-eds to short stories to nonfiction feature articles. Research is an integral part of developing many of these writing portfolio pieces. Throughout the year, students apply different critical lenses, including an examination of the historical accuracy of select works of fiction. In addition to reading and writing in prose and poetry, students practice visual literacy skills, dissect documentaries, and develop position papers. Students in Level 1 are expected to demonstrate the ability to work independently, producing more sophisticated pieces of writing and higher-level critical thinking.   

English 10 (#168)                                                                              Level 2                             Grade 10

Credits:  1.00                                                                                                                               

Full-Year

In English 10, students study literature from around the world.  Each unit allows for close study of literary works, as well as consideration of historical and cultural context.  The units focus not only on geographical regions but also on themes and literary forms that pertain to them.  Thus, students come to grasp the relationship between local concerns and universal questions.  They become aware of the authors’ views of literature itself – its forms, peculiarities, language, and relationship to reality.  In addition to fiction, students will study non-fiction and the rhetorical devices writers use to satisfy their audience, tone, and purpose.  Throughout the year, students take part in seminars, engage fully in the writing process, and formally present their work. 

 

English 10 (#166)                                                                              Level 1                              Grade 10

Credits:  1.00                                                                                                                                    Full-Year

In English 10, students study literature from around the world.  Each unit allows for close study of literary works, as well as consideration of historical and cultural context.  The units focus not only on geographical regions but also on themes and literary forms that pertain to them.  Thus, students come to grasp the relationship between local concerns and universal questions.  They become aware of the authors’ views of literature itself – its forms, peculiarities, language, and relationship to reality.  In addition to fiction, students will study non-fiction and the rhetorical devices writers use to satisfy their audience, tone, and purpose.  Throughout the year, students take part in seminars, engage fully in the writing process, and formally present their work.  Students in Level 1 are expected to demonstrate the ability to work independently and produce more sophisticated pieces of writing.   

 

  English 11 (#146)                                                                            Level 2                             Grade 11

Credits:  1.00                                                                                                                                    Full-Year

English 11 is devoted to a study of American literature from the early days of colonization to the present.  Students read fiction and non-fiction of varying lengths and styles and are exposed to a spectrum of American authors and thinkers.  Students will determine the author’s purpose and the role literature plays in portraying and shaping the American experience.  Assignments and instruction will focus on persuasive, critical, and creative writing.  To prepare for college, career, and SAT assessments, students will engage in the writing process and learn close-reading strategies. 

 

English 11 (#145)                                                                                Level 1                            Grade 11

Credits:  1.00                                                                                                                                    Full-Year

English 11 is devoted to a study of American literature from the early days of colonization to the present.  Students read fiction and non-fiction of varying lengths and styles and are exposed to a spectrum of American authors and thinkers.  Students will determine the author’s purpose and the role literature plays in portraying and shaping the American experience.  Assignments and instruction will focus on persuasive, critical, and creative writing.  To prepare for the college, career, and SAT assessments, students will engage in the writing process and learn close-reading strategies.  Students in Level 1 are expected to read more complex texts, work independently, and produce more sophisticated pieces of writing.  

 

Advanced Placement English Language and Composition (#142)        Level AP       Grades 11 & 12

Credits:  1.00                                                                                                                                    Full-Year

Advanced Placement English Language and Composition teaches students the art of composition through not only the analysis of existing text but also through the creation of new text.  By distinguishing text from sub-text, students will determine a writer’s purpose, audience, and tone and analyze the rhetorical devices she/he employs to satisfy all three:  chief among them structural modes; narrative and literary devices; conventions of standard English; diction and vocabulary; and syntax.  Students complete a writing portfolio and several critical assessments, some of which require research skills.  In each, they will apply and demonstrate their understanding of the art of composition.  Students also read canonical American Literature. As this is a college level course, students are expected to demonstrate the ability to perform independently at the college level.  This includes mandatory writing conferences with the instructor.  Students will spend a considerable amount of time preparing for the Advanced Placement exam and must take the English Language and Composition Advanced Placement Exam.  Complete and return the form referenced on page 8 to your counselor.

 

Advanced Placement English Literature and Composition (#157)  Level AP             Grades 11 & 12

Credits:  1.00                                                                                                                                     Full-Year

Advanced Placement English Literature and Composition continues instruction in critical reading and analytical writing.  The course requires the study of prose, poetry, and drama with texts ranging from classics to modern works.  Throughout their study, students will focus on the composition of art and the meaning of the work.  Classes are conducted as seminars where students are expected to develop, to recognize, and to refine their critical reading, writing, and thinking skills through debates, papers, critical material, presentations, and tests.  As this is a college level course, students are expected perform independently at the college level.  Students will spend a considerable amount of time preparing for the Advanced Placement exam and must take the English Literature and Composition Advanced Placement Exam.  Complete and return the form on page 8 to your counselor.

 

ENGLISH ELECTIVES:                                                                                                                             

College Composition (#111 L1 & 110 L2)                                      Level 1&2                  Grades 11,12

Credits:  .50                                                                                                                                     Half-Year

College Composition prepares students for the reading and writing requirements of college.  Materials include a handbook of grammar, selected literary pieces, and numerous writing models for study and analysis. This course will also include a one-week seminar on writing the college essay.  Students will leave the course with a writing portfolio comprised of weekly writing assignments.  To develop a critical sense about their writing, students can expect lively discourse, constructive criticism, and interactive strategies that will prepare them for the college classroom. 

 

Complex Themes and Simple Literature (#158 L1 & #151 L2)      Levels 1&2              Grades 11,12

Credits:  .50                                                                                                                                
Half-Year

Complex Themes and Simple Literature teaches students a new and more sophisticated appreciation of the seemingly simple world of children’s literature.  The course covers a wide range of material from picture books to several texts written for young adolescents.  For each text, students will determine the writer’s purpose, tone, and intended audience and explore the various conscious choices the writer makes to satisfy all three:  plot, structure, theme, language, and the integration of illustrations.  Projects will include several class presentations and several studies of representative children’s books.  The course culminates in the creation of an original children’s book.  This course is recommended for college bound students in need of refining their critical reading and writing skills, students planning a career in education or working with children, and students who enjoy reading. 

 

 Creative Writing (#139 L1 & #133 L2)                                          Levels 1&2                Grades 11,12

Credits:  .50                                                                                                                                
Half-Year

After years of “left brain” thinking and writing, this class is an opportunity to explore and apply your “right brain” capabilities to your writing efforts.  Creative writing is designed to tap into a student's ability to craft powerful and enlightening works of fiction and non-fiction and to understand how it can improve every aspect of your present and future writing efforts.  The objective of this course is to reveal your latent creativity and to provide various writing opportunities which will expose and strengthen your important and creative voice including the "archaeological" journal prompts, the Acoustic Cafe poetry presentation (mandatory), the Humans of LSM project, and the fairy-tale assignment which is done in collaboration with the first graders at Harwinton Consolidated Elementary School.  Additionally, if this class is held in the fall, we will spend time crafting and editing your college essay.

 

Creativity and Social Change (#130 L1 & #150 L2)                        Levels 1&2                     Grade 12

Credits:  .50                                                                                                                                     Half-Year

Creativity and Social Change (CASC) is a course designed to challenge and empower the student who is an innovative, critical thinker and a creative leader – a responsible citizen who is passionate about making a positive contribution to the community. It is an opportunity to discover who you are and what you care about as a young adult in a complex, multi-cultural planet unified by technology. This is a course centered around the idea of power – the ability to use our creative and academic intelligence honorably to craft powerful social engineering and entrepreneurship goals focused on making the world a better place for all. The curriculum is designed to challenge students to put their education to work by practicing inquiry-based learning focused on authentic, real world problems – selected by the student – as their area of study. A college seminar format enables students to work both independently and collaboratively, to lead discussions about subjects of their choosing, to build new understandings via class discussions and personal research, and to examine and appreciate the many facets of personal bias. The independent research, collaborative teamwork and communication projects created in this course provide valuable practice for creative problem-solving skills increasingly valued by colleges and businesses alike.

 

Literary Perspectives: He said/She said (#170 L1 & #175 L2)    Levels 1&2                      Grade 12

Credits:  .50                                                                                                                                     Half-Year

In Gender studies, students will assess how societal and cultural expectations, perceptions, and stereotypes have shaped the roles of men and women.  Identifying early and current forms of gender typing, students will investigate an array of genres:  how subliminal messages have shaped their own perspectives and feelings and how gender plays a significant role in determining one’s place in society.  Students will synthesize how gender is portrayed through various modes of communication such as poetry, drama, and mass media (magazines, commercials, advertisements, etc.).  Students will also explore the role of gender and how it continues to influence social status and social institutions.

 

Media Studies I: Power of the Press (#127 L1 & #126 L2)            Levels 1&2              Grades 11,12

Credits:  .50                                                                                                                                     Half-Year

Experience the power of the press first-hand.  In Media Studies I, students explore the fundamentals of print and digital news publications, as well as broadcast news production.  This hands-on class hones journalistic skills and writing acumen the old-fashioned way:  by pounding the pavement and seeking out sources as an apprentice journalist.  This course imparts important skills – from interviewing strategies to information gathering and story organization – and puts them to immediate use as students pen all the news that’s fit to print.  Experiences in this class mirror those in real-world newsrooms, such as holding daily news meetings and, ultimately, publishing stories, columns, and reviews in the school newspaper; the Spartan Scroll. Students interview each other, classmates, and members of the school and local community. As the media landscape has changed and continues to evolve, students marry traditional reporting skills with digital technology to explore stories across media platforms.  Participants debate and dissect important pieces of literary journalism, web-based information, visual storytelling, and media ethics in order to develop and hone news judgement and to understand the vital role of the press in our democracy.

 

Media Studies II: Stop the Presses (#128 L1 & #129 L2)             Levels 1&2              Grades 11,12

Credits:  .50                                                                                                                                 
Half-Year

In Media Studies II, students will refine in-depth reporting and publications skills introduced in the first course.  An emphasis on research skills, narrative nonfiction storytelling, and visual design principles encourages advanced journalism students to enact the role of an authentic, ethical reporter.  Students exercise news judgement by thinking their way into stories and acting as editors to determine which articles get coverage – and top billing – and why.  The evolving role of technology in media takes a more prominent role in this course, as students explore multimedia complements to traditional news stories, including videos, photos and graphically designed digital media reports.  As in Media Studies I, students interact and visit with prominent, accomplished journalists who are experts in their fields.  Students may produce short documentary films and imagine projects delivered via the next generation of media and news delivery.

 

Mythology (#149 L1 & #144 L2)                                                     Levels 1&2                Grades 11,12

Credits:  .50                                                                                                                                 
Half-Year

Mythology includes readings and folklore from a wide variety of cultures. Students explore everything from classical Greek and Roman to African tribal to Native American myths and legends.  Major archetypes (recurring patterns) in mythology are studied and applied to literature as well as to other art forms.  Distinctions will be made between a myth, legend, fairy tale, and fable.  Also, the cultural impact of mythology, the epic poem, and heroism in our contemporary world are examined. This class emphasizes philosophical insights and encourages creative and analytical writing.

Philosophy and Ethics Through Literature (#1314 L1 & #1315 L2) Levels 1&2                Grade 12

Credits:  .50                                                                                                                                  
Half-Year

Students enrolled in this course will hone their analytical reasoning, reading comprehension, logical argumentation, and independent thinking skills by engaging in the study of philosophy and ethics.  The style and content of the course will involve inquiry-based learning, with an emphasis on the consideration of societal problems and solutions.  Students will pay particular attention to the role of people in those solutions and problems. The goal of this course is to use the written word as a vehicle to getting students to think critically about ideas and precepts, and to apply that thinking to other facets of the larger world.  Students will learn the importance of full and focused consideration, and the ethical necessity of embracing nuance. Throughout the semester, students will engage in small-group and whole class discussions, which will be held in seminar style. Additionally, students will demonstrate their understanding of applied concepts through clear and thoughtful writing.


 
Public Speaking (#136 L1 & #132 L2)                                          Levels 1&2                  Grades 11,12

Credits:  .50                                                                                                                                     Half-Year

 Public Speaking is designed to prepare students to meet today’s communication challenges:  to discern fact from fiction, hype from honesty, and propaganda from public service.  More than ever, today’s young adults are in the public eye.  In this course, students will learn three equally important components of public speaking:  effective and ethical composition including research and citation skills; successful delivery employing both verbal and non-verbal communication skills; and thoughtful, active listening.  In Students will compose, deliver, and critique approximately thirteen (13) short speeches that fall into a variety of purposes:  to inform, to persuade, to celebrate, and to entertain.  Daily, students should be prepared to read, write, speak, critique, research, and listen, all toward developing an appreciation for the beauty of the page and power of its transference to the podium.  For their final exam, students will deliver a prepared speech to an auditorium audience.

 

 Theater Performance I (#703 L1 & #701 L2)                             Levels 1&2      Grades 9,10,11,12

Credits:  .50                                                                                                                                     Half-Year

Introduction to Theater Performance will be offered as a one-semester course that is designed to give the student an introduction into the many facets of theatrical performance and directing.  The course will be designed around five units: History of Theater, Acting and Improvisation, Voice and Movement, Stage Craft, and Directing.  Students will also have the opportunity to put skills into practical use by participating in the main stage theater productions, as well as other smaller theatrical projects throughout the school year. *

*Students enrolled in this course may select to count course credit toward a .5 English, or students may choose to count it as .5 arts credit. Students are still required to take 1 full year of English 9, 10, and 11.

 

Theater Performance II: Acting (#704 L1 & #702 L2)              Level 1&2            Grades 9,10,11,12     

Credits:  .50                                                                                                                             Half-Year

Prerequisite:  Introduction to Theater Performance OR instructor permission

Theater Performance II: Acting will be offered as a sequel to the introduction of the many facets of theatrical

performance and directing.  The course will expand upon the five units taught in Introduction to Theater Performance while putting them into practical use and performance.  They include:  History of Theater, Acting and Improvisation, Voice and Movement, Stage Craft, and Directing.  The focus of this class will be the discipline of reading and performing different genres of plays and musicals (no singing required).  Students enrolled in this course should have some prior knowledge/experience on stage, but it is not required for students to have participated in a past school production.  Students will have the opportunity to put skills into practical use by participating in the main stage theater productions, as well as other smaller theatrical projects throughout the school year.  Students enrolled with special permission from instructor must provide evidence of past performance history in order to be eligible for enrollment.**

** Students enrolled in this course may select to count course credit toward a .5 English, or students may choose to count it a .5 arts credit. Students are still required to take 1 full year of English 9, 10, and 11.