• Welcome to the Belle Vernon Area School District Language Arts Curriculum Page
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    Elementary Language Arts Curriculum
     
    Kindergarten Language Arts                               First Grade Language Arts
    Second Grade Language Arts                             Third Grade Language Arts
    Fourth Grade Language Arts                               Fifth Grade Language Arts
     
    Middle School Language Arts Curriculum
     

    Sixth Grade Reading:

    The purpose of this course is to ensure mastery of the skills necessary to become proficient and/or advanced on the Pennsylvania System of School Assessment (PSSA). This goal will be achieved through reading and studying genres that encompass literary elements and reading strategies. The literature utilized in this course encompasses quality, appropriate and life changing literature.

     

    Sixth Grade English:

    English 6 will focus on assisting the students in acquiring language skills to develop a better understanding and command of the English language through the study of grammar, usage, composition, and vocabulary development in conjunction with the Pennsylvania State Standards.  The parts of speech will be analyzed in a logical sequence leading to the examination of basic sentence parts and patterns.  The ways a sentence can be expanded through the use of phrases and clauses will be studied.  English will emphasize solid sentence writing and paragraph structure.   Standard usage in writing and speaking will be employed to enable effective oral and written communication of ideas. Vocabulary study will assist in the development of effective oral and written communication.

     
     

    Seventh Grade Reading  

    The purpose of this course is to ensure mastery of the skills necessary to become proficient and/or advanced on the Pennsylvania System of School Assessment (PSSA). This goal will be achieved through reading and studying genres that encompass literary elements and reading strategies. The literature utilized in this course encompasses quality, appropriate and life changing literature.

     

    Seventh Grade English

    English 7 will focus on assisting the students in acquiring language skills to develop a better understanding and command of the English language through the study of grammar, usage, composition, and vocabulary development in conjunction with the Pennsylvania State Standards.  Selected parts of speech will be analyzed in a logical sequence leading to the examination of basic sentence parts and patterns.  The ways a sentence can be expanded through the use of phrases and clauses will be studied.  Standard usage in writing and speaking will be employed to enable effective oral and written communication of ideas. Vocabulary study will assist in the development of effective oral and written communication.
     
     

    Eighth Grade Reading

    The purpose of this course is to ensure mastery of the skills necessary to become    proficient and/or advanced on the Pennsylvania System of School Assessment (PSSA). This goal will be achieved through reading and studying genres that      encompass literary elements and reading strategies. The literature utilized in this course encompasses quality, appropriate and life changing literature.

    Eighth Grade English 

    English 8 will focus on assisting the students in acquiring language skills to develop a better understanding and command of the English language through the study of grammar, usage, composition, and vocabulary development in conjunction with the Pennsylvania State Standards.  Selected parts of speech will            be analyzed in a logical sequence leading to the examination of basic sentence parts and patterns.  The ways a sentence can be expanded through the use of phrases and clauses will be studied.  Standard usage in writing and speaking will be employed to enable effective oral and written communication of ideas. Vocabulary study will assist in the development of effective oral and written communication.

     

     

    Eighth Grade English A

    English 8A will focus on assisting the students in acquiring language skills to develop a better understanding and command of the English language through the study of grammar, usage, composition, and vocabulary development in conjunction with the Pennsylvania State Standards.  The course will also incorporate the study of the various genres of literature examining fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and drama. Selected parts of speech will be analyzed in a logical sequence leading to the examination of basic sentence parts and patterns.  The ways a sentence can be expanded through the use of phrases and clauses will be studied.  Standard usage in writing and speaking will be employed to enable effective oral and written communication of ideas.  Critical and independent reading will be stressed with a thorough analysis of literary elements and devices.  The focused engagement and connection of reading, analyzing, and writing prepares students for the high school classroom. Literary selections will include the following: Treasure Island, The Taming of the Shrew, The Pearl, selected trade novels, short stories, and poetry.   Vocabulary study will assist in the development of effective oral and written communication.

     

     
    High School Language Arts Curriculum
     

    READING I

    This course enables students to maintain their proficiency in the basic critical reading skills. Through high interest stories and activities, the student will maintain his/her reading comprehension, word recognition, writing skills, and oral communication skills.

     

    ENGLISH I

    This course is designed to integrate writing, grammar, speaking, and reading. Material progresses from the individual parts of speech to word groups, sentence building, paragraph writing, and into composition development. Students will complete vocabulary and comprehension selections for selected novels.

     

    ENGLISH II

    This class offers an integrated approach combining literature and grammar. Students will read plays/short stories and answer questions orally and through writing. Students will be encouraged to develop critical thinking, communication and vocabulary skills after reading a selected novel. Grammar units will be evident in daily sentence writing and paragraph writing.

     

    ENGLISH III

    This class offers a comprehensive emphasis on the writing process. The students will connect the thinking process with writing based on the foundation of grammar skills, distinguish between parts of speech and paragraph development, and extrapolate on the vocabulary and content of selected novels through class discussion.

     

    ENGLISH IV

    This course encourages and prepares students to successfully pursue their job opportunities in the adult work environment. The student will be presented with the demands and challenges of different careers. The student will learn how to locate and apply for a job. Focus will be on the responsibility of the student to be a positive member of the community. The student will exit the program with a fact sheet and a resume. The course is designed to lead a student to gainful employment based upon individual interests and abilities.

     

    HUMANITIES CORE: HUMANITIES

    This course will be a multi-level Humanities course with a nine-week rotating schedule. Students will rotate Humanities, Music Appreciation, and Exploring Technology. Each area will meet for one nine-week period. (Schedule this course if not scheduling French or Spanish.) Humanities: The student will broaden his/her reading and discussion skills through the selection of literature focused toward the life of a teenager. Works covered may include the novels Scorpions and Don¡¯t You Dare Read This, Mrs. Dumphrey. The student is encouraged to experience reading material that is relatable and presents issues that causes one to think.

     

    CAREER ENGLISH 9

    Students will focus on vocabulary, editing skills, writing, and reading comprehension. Students will complete exercises in a vocabulary workbook to strengthen writing and reading skills. Students will work on their editing skills to enable them to develop coherent paragraphs that are free of grammatical errors. Grammar will be integrated with the writing exercises and editing drills. Students will read short stories, novels, and plays that focus on the interpretation and analysis of fiction and nonfiction texts. Everyday life skills will be emphasized through the use of rigorous, teacher-generated materials that relate to real world. The major works covered may be Hoot, Tex, The Call of the Wild, Holes, Brian¡¯s Winter and The Odyssey. Students will read short story selections from the Jamestown Critical Reading Series. The course is designed for students who plan to enter the work force, a vocational school, or the military service. Study Island will be used as needed for student preparation and enhancement of reading and language skills. Skills for both reading and writing will be practiced. Recommendation: Students who are interested in a non-academic vocation should schedule this class.

     

    CAREER ENGLISH 10

    The class offers an integrated approach combining literature, writing, grammar and vocabulary. Students will respond to the literature by answering questions both orally and through writing. Students will be asked to relate the reading to their experiences. Grammar units will be covered through each of the stories discussed. Students will develop vocabulary skills in each story and through the use of the Vocabulary Workshop text. Interpretation and analysis of fiction and nonfiction texts will be an integral part of this course. Everyday life skills will be emphasized through the use of rigorous, teacher-generated materials that relate to real world. Fiction selections may include excerpts from King Arthur; A Thousand and One Nights; The Giver; The Outsiders; Rumble Fish; That Was Then, This is Now; and some short stories. Nonfiction selections may include real-life adventure stories from the Jamestown Critical Reading Series: Phenomenon, Deceptions, and Apparitions as well as Night, ¨Dfrom the Autobiography of Malcolm X¡¬ and passages incorporated in Study Island which will be used throughout the course as needed for student preparation and enhancement of reading and language skills. Skills for both reading and writing will be practiced. Recommendation: Students who are interested in a non-academic vocation should schedule this class.

     

    CAREER ENGLISH 11

    This course, for the liberal and practical arts student, offers an integrated approach combining literature, writing, and grammar. Reading, comprehension, interpretation, and analysis of fiction text may include the following novels The Contender, To Kill a Mockingbird, and Staying Fat for Sarah Byrnes. Everyday life skills will be emphasized through the use of rigorous, teacher-generated materials that relate to real world. Students may also read, understand, and respond to pieces from American Literature for Life and Work. Students will develop vocabulary skills through use of the workbook, Vocabulary for Achievement. Additionally, lessons from the Jamestown Critical Reading Series: Calamities, Alien¡¯s and UFO¡¯s, and Daredevils may be utilized for the reading, comprehension, interpretation, and analysis of nonfiction text. Research skills will be incorporated into this class. Writing and public speaking skills may be developed through the inclusion of a research project. Study Island will be used as needed for student preparation, remediation, and enhancement of reading and language skills. Skills for both reading and writing will be practiced. Recommendation: Students who are interested in a non-academic vocation should schedule this class.

     

    CAREER ENGLISH 12

    This course, for the liberal and practical arts student, emphasizes the improvement of reading and writing skills. Interpretation and analysis of fiction and nonfiction text will be an integral part of this course. Reading, comprehension, interpretation, and analysis of fiction text may include the following novels: Animal Farm, Welcome to the Ark, The Five People You Meet in Heaven, The Old Man and the Sea. Everyday life skills will be emphasized through the use of rigorous, teacher-generated materials that relate to real world. Students may also read, understand, and respond to pieces from British and World Literature for Life and Work. Students will develop vocabulary skills through use of the workbook, Vocabulary Drills-Jamestown¡¯s Reading Improvement. Additionally, lessons from the Jamestown Critical Reading Series: Heroes, Monsters, Eureka, Disasters, Rescued, Eccentrics, Choices, and Discoveries may be utilized for the reading, comprehension, interpretation, and analysis of nonfiction text. Also, students will compose personal and expository papers, business letters, and resumes. Research skills will be incorporated into this class. The course may include a ¨Dsenior book¡¬ (collection of writings) and other writing opportunities. Skills for both reading and writing will be practiced. Recommendation: Students who are interested in a non-academic vocation should schedule this class.

     

    COLLEGE PREP ENGLISH 9

    The first year of the academic English program offers an integrated approach combining grammar, vocabulary, literature, and writing for the college bound student. Grammar will be integrated with the literature lessons and writing. Grammar will include parts of speech, complements, phrases, and mechanics. Vocabulary units will enable students to acquire a robust vocabulary. Literature units will focus on the interpretation and analysis of fiction and nonfiction texts. Writing lessons will focus on developing a unified, well organized paragraph that offers support to the topic. Writing will focus on critical essays based on literature from the text and personal essays. Research skills will be incorporated into each class. Literature will include the short story, poetry, nonfiction essays, plays, and novels. The major works studied may include Great Expectations, Romeo and Juliet, and The Odyssey. Study Island will be used as needed for student preparation and enhancement of reading and language skills.

     

    COLLEGE PREP ENGLISH 10

    The second year of the college preparatory English program emphasizes an integrated approach to the study of world literature, composition, grammar, and basic research skills for the college bound student. Interpretation and analysis of fiction and nonfiction text will be an integral part of this course. In world literature the student studies selected short stories, poems, dramas, nonfiction essays, and novels that reflect various cultures and universal concerns of humanity. Major fiction works MAY include Julius Caesar, Antigone, Oedipus Rex, A Separate Peace, Summer of My German Soldier, The Hobbit, and some King Arthur stories. Nonfiction selections may include Night, ¨DSwimming to Antarctica¡¬, ¨DArtful Research¡¬, ¨DMaking History with Vitamin C¡¬, ¨DThe Spider and the Wasp¡¬ and ¨DKeep Memory Alive.¡¬ Grammar lessons integrated with the world literature selections focus on the study of modifiers, phrases, clauses, varied sentence structures, and mechanics as they relate to unit writing activities. Composition lessons enable the student to use detailed support evidence to write unified, well-organized paragraphs based on the literature read or life experiences. Research skills will be incorporated into this class. The curriculum is tentative depending on the needs of the particular classes. Study Island will be used as needed for student preparation and enhancement of reading and language skills.

     

    COLLEGE PREP ENGLISH 11

    The third year of our academic English program for the college bound student emphasizes an integrated approach to the study of American literature, composition, vocabulary, grammar, and research skills for the college bound student. In literature, the student studies selected short stories, essays, poems, plays, and novels, which are read, comprehended, interpreted, and analyzed from a personal and historic perspective. Major novels may include The Great Gatsby, To Kill a Mockingbird, Of Mice and Men, The Crucible, and Macbeth. Composition and grammar lessons focus on the writing of personal and literary essays. Also included in the course is the study of SAT-style vocabulary. A research project requiring analytical, interpretive, and critical thinking skills is prepared. The student will read, comprehend, analyze, and interpret informative/nonfiction text to be reputable and credible resources. Study Island will be used as needed for student preparation, remediation, and enrichment of reading and language skills.

     

    COLLEGE PREP ENGLISH 12

    The fourth year of the academic English program emphasizes an integrated approach to the study of British literature, multi-paragraph writing, vocabulary, grammar, and methods of research for the college bound student. Interpretation and analysis of fiction and nonfiction text will be an integral part of this course. In literature the student studies thematic essays, biographies and autobiographies, short stories, epics, poems, and plays of varied genre and time periods, ranging from Old to Modern English. Non-Fiction selections may include biographies and autobiographies of the major authors, ¨DA History of the English Church and People,¡¬ essays by Byron, Macaulay, Austen, and Wollstonecraft, woven into a unit on ¨DThe Reaction to Society¡¯s Ills,¡¬ and Pausch¡¯s The Last Lecture. The fiction selections may include Beowulf, The Canterbury Tales, Rime of the Ancient Mariner, Hamlet, Lord of the Flies, excerpts from King Arthur, Pygmalion, and 1984. Also included in the course is the study of SAT-style vocabulary through use of the workbook, Vocabulary Workshop ¨C Level H. Composition lessons focus on methods of paragraph development and organization, principles of essay writing, and various modes of writing. Grammar lessons emphasize continued study of phrases, clauses, and sentence structure as they relate to writing skills. Usage and mechanics skills are taught as a remedy for commonly made errors in composition. A literary research paper requiring analytical, interpretive, and critical thinking skills is prepared. The students will read, comprehend, analyze, and interpret informative/nonfiction text to be reputable and credible resources. Use of Modern Language Association (MLA) manuscript form, parenthetical documentation, and bibliographical citations are an integral part of this course and required for graduation. The course may include a ¨Dsenior book¡¬ (collection of writings) and other writing opportunities.

     

    ACCELERATED ENGLISH 9

    Through an integrated language, world literature, and composition approach, advanced students will define and identify elements of literature, express and explain responses to literature, interpret and analyze fiction and nonfiction text, improve reading proficiency and vocabulary, and gain exposure to notable authors. Students will complete in class timed writings and focus on the five paragraph essay relevant to the literature selections. Research skills will be incorporated into this class. Students will be encouraged through class discussions to express opinions about the assigned literary selections. Grammar and mechanics will be reinforced through editing drills and the student¡¯s writing. Vocabulary will be reinforced through weekly exercises from a vocabulary text. Literature units will include short stories, poetry, nonfiction essays, plays and novels. The major works may include Animal Farm, Lost Horizon, The Odyssey, King Henry the Fourth Part I, and Visitor from Forest Hills.. Study Island will be used as needed for student preparation and enhancement of reading and language skills. Accelerated English 9 is designed to prepare the student for Advanced Placement English 11 and 12.

     

    ACCELERATED ENGLISH 10

    Through an integrated language, world literature, and composition approach, students will critically evaluate elements of literature, provide oral and written interpretive conclusions about a literary work¡¯s meaning and value, will become careful, deliberate readers and observers of details, increase their vocabulary proficiency, deepen their understanding of the ways writers use language, and develop their analytical reasoning skills. Students will write personal, critical, analytical, and research essays relevant to the universal concerns of humans as they appear in the world literature studied as well as from the perspective of general knowledge or daily life observation. Grammar and mechanics will be addressed in conjunction with in-class timed-writing assignments and the longer required compositions.

     

    AP ENGLISH 11 (HONORS COURSE)

    A. P. English 11 is an active course demanding intense preparation and participation for the highly motivated student with strong reading and writing skills. The student should be fully competent in reading literature and writing essays at a fast pace, through the integrated study of (primarily) American literature (novels, plays, short stories, and poems). This course is designed to develop reading comprehension, writing, and discussion skills beyond the factual to the interpretive, critical, and evaluative levels of proficiency, with emphasis on skills related to the A. P. English Language and Composition and A. P. English Literature and Composition tests. Students will write literary essays, short topical research papers, reading journals, and chapter pr¨¨cis of longer works. Interpretation and analysis of fiction and nonfiction text will be an integral part of this course. Nonfiction selections may include biographies and autobiographies of major authors, White¡¯s ¨DDeath of a Pig,¡¬ Baker¡¯s ¨DLittle Red Riding Hood Revisited,¡¬ ¨DSchool vs. Education,¡¯ and Miller¡¯s ¨DTragedy and the Common Man.¡¬ The fiction selections may include The Scarlet Letter, The Great Gatsby, Death of a Salesman, The Crucible, Ethan Frome, Macbeth, The Red Badge of Courage, and The Glass Menagerie. In addition, Study Island will be used as needed for student preparation and enhancement of reading and language skills. The very nature of the AP exam necessitates the above conditions since both the objective and the essay questions on the three hour test assume that the student is thinking and working at a college level. Course content and speed are subject to change. (A summer reading and writing requirement should be expected.) Requirement: Students enrolled in this course must take the AP Exam in May. The benefits of this exam are listed in the ¡°PROGRAM OF STUDIES¡± section of this selection guide. This course is a Pre-Requisite for Advanced Placement Honors English 12.

     

    AP ENGLISH 12 (HONORS COURSE)

    A. P. English 12 demands intense preparation for highly motivated students with strong reading and writing skills. Through the integrated study of literature, language, composition, and skills related to the A. P. English Literature and Composition Test and the A. P. Language and Composition Test, students will improve comprehension and interpretation skills as they read and analyze nonfiction selections, as well as English drama, poetry, novels, and short stories. Major works may include Hamlet, Beowulf, The Canterbury Tales, Lord of the Flies, Brave New World, Pride and Prejudice, Frankenstein, Wuthering Heights, Jane Eyre, A Midsummer Night¡¯s Dream, and Far From the Madding Crowd. Students will compose personal, expository, research, and creative papers including autobiography, variations of the five paragraph thesis, literary research, short story, poetry, and both computer lab and in-class timed writings. In addition to daily class participation, students will enhance speaking skills through individual and group presentations. The very nature of the Advanced Placement Test necessitates the above since the objective and the essay questions on the three hour exams assume that students are working at a college level. Course content and speed are subject to change. Requirement: Students enrolled in this course must take the AP Exam in May. The benefits of this exam are listed in the ¡°PROGRAM OF STUDIES¡± section of this selection guide. (College credit may be earned through Mount Aloysius College provided payment of fees has been completed.)