Advanced Journalism and Creative Writing is designed for students wishing to develop further the writing skills learned in Professional Writing I. During the first semester, students will learn and apply skills in editing and layout of journalistic material while continuing to improve their writing style. During the second semester, they will apply these editing and layout skills to a creative writing project of their choosing including but not limited to poetry, science fiction, romance, juvenile literature, travel literature, journalism, non-fiction, or playwriting. Students are expected to offer their work for in-class, peer critique as well as submit work periodically for contests or publication.
Devised Theater and Improv is open to students in grades 10-12 who are interested in an in-depth study of drama and the theater arts. Devised theater projects will provide opportunities for students to develop new and original works of theater. Students will also explore improv acting skills to develop critical thinking and problem solving, communication, collaboration, creativity and innovation. Students will analyze, respond to, and present course content that is related to the creation and performance of original theatrical works and the application of theater competencies. The class members will complete in-class and public performances, theatrical exercises, script writing, group performances, solo performances, and portfolio building.
English 6 is a comprehensive program designed to meet the needs of all 6th graders. This course encompasses the Pennsylvania Common Core Standards of listening, speaking, reading, and writing. Vocabulary, grammar, writing, and the reading of various texts are all components of this course. Students will analyze literature from a variety of genres, focusing on writer’s craft and how writers create meaning for the reader. By doing this, students will enhance their own writing skills, as well as develop the skills necessary to be successful on the Common Core PSSA ELA exam.
English 7 is a writing-based course, designed as a comprehensive skills program for all seventh graders. Students develop important writing skills with a focus on three major modes of writing: narrative, informative, and argumentative. Spelling and vocabulary skills, as well as sentence structure, grammar, and standard usage, will be focused on within this writing curriculum. In addition, students also read and analyze various types of literature, including short stories, a novel, poetry, and Greek myths with a focus on author’s craft.
English 8 is aligned to mandated PA Common Core standards reinforcing language arts skills. Students continue to strengthen and develop speaking, listening, reading, and writing skills through a rigorous, relevant, and diverse curriculum. The curriculum includes demonstrating and critiquing public speaking skills, developing and expanding vocabulary, reading and analyzing varied texts, and writing formal and informal multi-paragraph pieces.
CP English 9 is a literature-based course. Students strengthen their vocabulary skills; their speaking, listening, and writing skills; their grammar and usage skills; and their understanding and appreciation of various types of literature, including the novel. This course will provide students with the skills that are necessary to succeed in the college prep high school English programs.
Honors English 9 is a course in which reading and writing independently comprise the core of the curriculum. In addition to intelligence and diligence, prerequisites for success include self-discipline, initiative, and the ability to budget time. Several novels, assigned as independent reading, will be analyzed through class discussions, tests, and formal essays. In addition, grammar skills, vocabulary development, speeches, and other literature selections will be part of the everyday class schedule. A summer reading list will be distributed in June; required works must be completed by the date of the first class meeting in August.
CP English 10 students are provided the opportunity to develop composition skills, literary analysis, and oral presentations. Writing will be incorporated regularly using a variety of styles. Students will also participate in an extensive vocabulary study that will aid them in the examination of novels, short stories, plays, poems, and nonfiction.
Honors English 10 students are provided the opportunity to continue developing high verbal ability through frequent writing and reading assignments. Students will develop literary analysis techniques, independent reading strategies, and research skills. Students will read novels, plays, short stories, and poetry and will write a variety of informational and literary analysis essays. A summer reading list will be distributed in June; summer reading must be completed by the date of the first class meeting in August.
CP English 11 focuses on the study of American literature and how it addresses questions an issues in our culture. Numerous classic and contemporary novels, plays, poems, and short stories are read, analyzed, and critiqued. A research paper is required of all students. A major emphasis is placed on essay composition and SAT vocabulary and test taking preparation.
Honors English 11 is designed for highly motivated juniors with above-average ability. To succeed in this course, a student must be capable of substantial independent study and must spend approximately one hour out of class for each hour in class. In addition to intelligence and diligence, prerequisites for success include self-discipline, initiative, and the ability to budget time. Students are expected to demonstrate above-average writing skills and to have mastered all the basics of English grammar and mechanics. In addition, students are expected to complete and comprehend frequent, lengthy, independent reading assignments in American literature. Class discussion and vocabulary study are also integral components of the course and a research paper is required of all students. A summer reading list will be distributed in June; required works must be completed by the date of the first class meeting in August.
CP English 12Êis designed according to Common Core State Standards with a focus on media literacy. Students will examine the strategies used to communicate ideas in various media, as well as, how an audience or reader interprets those ideas. Students will also analyze contemporary media for use of bias and rhetoric and be able to utilize these devices in their own work. Although literary analysis writing is stressed, narrative pieces will also be assigned. In addition, vocabulary development and communications skills are important facets of this course.
Honors English Composition 12 is a 12th grade course in academic writing for students planning to pursue some level of post-secondary education (Associate, Bachelor degrees etc.). The course helps students develop effective processes and strategies for writing for different audiences and contexts. By emphasizing critical thinking, evidence-based inquiry, and self-reflection, the course prepares students to participate in the ongoing discourse of the academic community at the collegiate level.The course has a two-fold goal of developing rhetorical understanding of communicative acts and practical writing abilities. By moving from personal essay writing through the analysis and integration of texts to the synthesis of academic research into one’s own perspective, students will see how the academic community values the ability to make a meaningful claim in a well-developed, organized, and clear way. **This course offers a dual enrollment option for students interested in earning college credit while completing the course during senior year. **
Honors English 12 is designed for highly motivated seniors with above-average ability. To succeed in this course, a student must be capable of substantial independent study and must spend approximately one hour out of class for each hour in class. In addition to intelligence and diligence, prerequisites for success include self-discipline, initiative, and the ability to budget time. Students are expected to demonstrate above-average writing skills and to have mastered all the basics of English grammar and mechanics. In addition, students are expected to complete and comprehend frequent, lengthy, independent reading assignments in classic and contemporary literature. Reading and assignments encourage both analysis and appreciation of literature as a meaningful reflection of the human experience. Class discussion and vocabulary study are also integral components of the course. A summer reading list will be distributed in May; required works must be completed by the date of the first class meeting in August.
**This course offers a dual enrollment option for students interested in earning college credit while completing the course during senior year. **
AP Language and Composition provides a rigorous AP English course that complements AP English Literature and Composition and provides an opportunity for further study of nonfiction as well as advanced composition skills. The College Board suggests curriculum for the course “places a strong emphasis on the development of proficient reading and writing skills. In particular, thorough, efficient reading and contextual understanding of rigorous nonfiction materials and the ability to write organized and developed pieces that demonstrate a strong stylistic and expressive command over the English language. As well as engaging in varied writing tasks, students become acquainted with a wide variety of prose styles from many disciplines and historical periods, and gain understanding of the connections between writing and interpretive skill in reading. Concurrently, to reflect the increasing importance of graphics and visual images in texts published in print and electronic media, students are asked to analyze how such images both relate to written texts and serve as alternative forms of texts themselves. In addition, the informed use of research materials and the ability to synthesize varied sources (to evaluate, use, and cite sources) are integral parts of this course.” In May of each year, students take the national AP exam for possible college credit. A summer reading list will be distributed in June; required works must be completed by the date of the first class meeting in August.
In AP Literature and Composition, students learn to read and to analyze some of the finest poetry, plays, novels, short stories and essays selected from various times and various cultures. Students learn to explore meaning in literature by being attentive to language. Students practice supporting interpretations by noting details and patterns found in the text, comparing their interpretations with those proposed by others, and modifying their own ideas as they learn more and think more. Writing assignments are frequent and varied; students practice both in class and out of class writing.
Writing assignments are meant to lead students to insights into a work of literature or, alternatively, to record some insight into human behavior. Students are immersed in a community of discourse, one in which ideas are exchanged freely. The result is often a high level of verbal communication and reasoning. In May of each year, students take the national AP exam for possible college credit. A summer reading list will be distributed in June; required works must be completed by the date of the first class meeting in August.
Film and Literature is a class for junior and seniors who are interested in the study of film. Students in this class will embark on a journey through both classic and contemporary films while honing their critical thinking, writing, and communication skills. Movies that are included in the curriculum include The Shawshank Redemption, Citizen Kane, Jaws, 2001: A Space Odyssey, and many others. As part of the course students will create, film, and present an original short documentary.
Information Literacy can be defined as a person’s ability to read, interpret, evaluate, use, and communicate ideas from technical texts. This English elective is designed for 10th – 12th grade students who want to learn and refine strategies for reading the kinds of informational texts they’ll encounter in STEM careers such as diagrams, reports, weather maps, charts, videos, and other technical formats. By the end of the semester, students will learn literacy skills necessary to tackle texts with complex technical jargon and distinct formats. As an added benefit, this course will simultaneously provide students with the content required for their Private Pilot ground school instruction which they can use to credit toward their Private Pilot training if they choose to pursue a career in aviation.
Intro to Journalism and Creative Writing is designed for students interested in exploring and developing their skills in the professional writing arena. The first semester is devoted to journalistic writing forms such as the straight news, features, reviews, editorials, columns, and sports. The second semester focuses on creative writing, including fiction, creative non-fiction, and poetry. Students in this elective course will be writing frequently while honing their skills. Students are expected to offer their work for in-class, peer critique as well as submit work periodically for contests or publication.
Introduction to Theater is open to students of all grade levels who are interested in drama and the theater arts. The course is performance-based and delivers an overview of many areas of performance, technical, and historical theater. The class has a strong focus on 21st Century Skills development and the goals set forth in the Pennsylvania Department of Education’s Academic Standards for the Arts and Humanities and the National Core Arts Standards. Introduction to Theater students will engage in the study of performance, theatre history, acting techniques, technical theater, and the application of theater competencies as they relate to skills necessary for 21st Century learners to be successful.
Literature Standards is a required course for 11th and 12th-grade students who have not yet been scored `proficient’ on the Pennsylvania Keystone Exam in Literature. This remediation course is a mandatory requirement of the state of Pennsylvania’s Department of Education. In this course, students will learn more about strategies and skills practice in the areas of `Reading for Meaning’ and `Analyzing and Interpreting Literature’ for both fiction and nonfiction literature.
CP Philosophy and Literature is a course designed to introduce students to the essential questions of western philosophy through the vehicle of literature. Through this course, students will identify philosophical issues in both fiction and non-fiction text, and develop an understanding of their own viewpoints in light of these readings. Students in this course will develop the cognitive tools to think deeply about important issues, and the meta-cognitive tools to understand how and why they arrive at their own philosophies. Students in this course will develop tools to effectively convey a thesis in various forms of writing, including argumentative, persuasive, informative, and narrative. Students will read, analyze, and interpret fiction and non-fiction text, and draw conclusions and connections based on these readings.
AP Research class allows students to further their research and writing skills as they deeply explore an academic topic, problem, or issue of individual interest. Through this process, students design, plan, and conduct a yearlong investigation to address a research question. In the AP Research course, students continue the work of AP Seminar by learning research methodology, employing ethical research practices, and accessing, analyzing, and synthesizing information. Students reflect on their skill development, document their processes, and curate the artifacts of their scholarly work through a process and reflection portfolio. The course culminates in an academic paper of approximately 4,000_5,000 words (accompanied by a performance, exhibit, or product where applicable) and a presentation with an oral defense.
School Publications involves the preparation, development, and production of high school publications, the most significant project being the annual high school yearbook. Employing an inductive approach to learning, the students “learn by doing” and will learn publication skills such as planning; teamwork; group and individual responsibility; development of concept, content, and design; photography and graphics principles; writing and editing; and marketing approaches that include financial plans, advertising, selling, and distribution of published projects.
AP Seminar, which is the first research and writing course in the AP Capstone program, is an inquiry-based writing and research course that seeks to engage students, both collaboratively and individually, in cross-curricular conversations and research that explore real-world topics from multiple perspectives. Students learn to analyze and evaluate texts with accuracy and precision to effectively write and present evidence-based arguments. AP Seminar culminates with two (2) Performance-based tasks (one group paper and presentation and one individual paper and presentation) and one (1) traditional AP Written Exam. AP Seminar can fulfill either an 11th grade or 12th grade English credit.
Requirement: for Visual and Performing Arts Academy Theater Pathway
Senior Acting & Directing is open to senior students who wish to pursue the study of acting and gain further training in character development, analysis, and stage direction. Senior Acting & Directing is a full-year, performance-based course that addresses the goals set forth in the Pennsylvania Department of Education’s Academic Standards for the Arts and Humanities and the National Core Arts Standards. Activities include independent projects, theatrical productions, and cross-curricular assignments. In addition, original plays, monologues, scenes, one-act performances, and fully staged productions will be created as part of the course. Students will have the opportunity to produce and direct a one-act play.
Senior Acting & Directing is a capstone course for Visual and Performing Arts Academy: Theater Pathway. In order to graduate with a Visual and Performing Arts Academy Theater Pathway recognition, students are required to take this course.
Theater Production and Performance is open to students in grades 10 -12 who are interested in an in-depth study of drama and the theater arts. Students will work on projects that will develop critical thinking, problem solving, communication, collaboration, creativity and innovation. Students will engage in the study and performance of acting techniques for the stage and for film and will study different forms of theater including musical theater. Preparing and presenting public performances will be a part of the curriculum. Theater Production & Performance will be especially helpful for students who are interested in building their performance portfolio in preparation for college and scholarship auditions.