For Students in grade 9 (Required)
Prerequisites: Students are placed in the appropriate level based on the recommendation of their 8th grade teacher.
The Freshman Program concentrates on developing skills in written expression, critical thinking and literary analysis using poetry, drama, fiction, and nonfiction. Written expression is emphasized throughout the year, with the goal of enabling students to write essays with an analytical, interpretive, or persuasive thesis using textual support for the claims and inferences in their essays. The course also stresses systemic vocabulary building, the development of oral expression, and grammar review. Technology serves as a tool in this course to develop writing and presentation skills, and to explore thematic issues in the course readings. Core texts are centered around the theme of the Discovery of the Self: Romeo and Juliet, To Kill a Mockingbird, a play from The Oedipus Trilogy, and poetry from The Seagull Reader; other texts may include Of Mice and Men, Kindred, The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time, Great Expectations, Hiroshima, I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, The Glass Menagerie, A Night to Remember, and Into Thin Air.
Initial level placement in Freshman English is based on teacher recommendation; the eighth grade teacher carefully considers a student’s readiness in four areas: language, literature, writing, and work preparation. It is the strong recommendation of the English teachers that a student not take a class that will add undue stress to a Ninth Grade year already filled with change, challenge, and excitement. We expect students and parents to make a decision that will offer the most stability and support, as well as academic rigor, for a first year high school student.
We strongly recommend reviewing the two self-evaluation forms below.