Topics by Year

Freshman students

  • read mythology, including The Odyssey
  • study the structure of short stories
  • analyze poetry
  • read and perform A Raisin in the Sun
  • read The House on Mango Street
  • review grammar concepts   
  • prepare for the MCAS test
  • learn basic research techniques

Sophomore students

  • read novels, like Fahrenheit 451                        
  • continue to read and analyze short stories and poetry
  • read and perform Shakespeare's Julius Caesar
  • continue to study grammar concepts
  • prepare for the MCAS test, administered in the spring
  • learn more advanced research techniques

Junior students

  • focus on American Literature
  • study the history and background of the Salem Witch Trials, often while reading and analyzing The Crucible
  • read and analyze Native American poetry
  • read and analyze classic and contemporary American novels, short stories, plays, and poetry
  • review research techniques; choose a topic and devise a thesis for a research paper; research, using print and non-print sources; follow the MLA rules for proper citation and bibliography format; and write a cohesive, thesis-based research paper of five or more pages
  • prepare to take the Accuplacer test
  • have the opportunity to take the AP English Language & Composition course and exam if they meet the prerequisites

Senior students

  • focus on British Literature
  • prepare the written portion of the Senior Project
  • read and analyze ancient texts such as Beowulf and "The Wanderer" 
  • read and analyze Middle English texts such as The Canterbury Tales, Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, and King Arthur and Camelot tales                                         
  • read and perform Shakespearean plays such as Macbeth or Hamlet
  • prepare resumes and cover letters
  • practice writing college application essays
  • have the opportunity to take the AP English Literature & Composition course and exam if they meet the prerequisites

Other Offerings

Students who need additional work to reach grade-level reading skills will be enrolled in Reading A, B, or C.

Students who fail to pass the MCAS as sophomores will be expected to attend MCAS English Preparation, held after school.

Our department also sponsors a variety of electives as well

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