New York State Common Core Standards

  • Reading informational texts for key ideas and details.
  • Reading literature for craft and structure.
  • Writing different text types. (There is an emphasis on evidence-based writing.)
  • Writing for different purposes.
  • Speaking and listening for comprehension and collaboration.
  • Language knowledge and usage.

Every student must earn four credits in English. All students must pass the Common Core examination in English.

Course Offerings


1 Credit – Full Year Course

This course provides an in-depth concentration of the classics including poetry, novels, short stories, and drama. This course includes many independent and group projects to demonstrate the students’ understanding of the course material. The course centers around student driven and student developed discussions. There will be extensive analysis of literary elements and critical writing. This is a fast paced course that should only be considered by the advanced, self-motivated student with superior skills and a strong interest in literature.


1 Credit – Full Year Course

This course focuses on the enjoyment and understanding of literature including the short story, the novel, drama, poetry, and non-fiction by a variety of authors. In addition to composition, grammar, vocabulary and spelling, the step-by-step process in preparing the research paper is taught. Students entering this course should have solid skills in reading and writing, for these two areas form the core of the class.

HONORS ENGLISH 10 (English Literature)

1 Credit – Full Year Course

From Beowulf to Churchill, English literature teams with thoughtful and though-provoking selections to be encountered by the student with exceptional skills in analytical writing and reading. The student will journey to Canterbury with Chaucer, brood on life and death with Shakespeare, fear for the lives of Dickens’ characters, and face the universal themes of cultural changes in all of literature.

Students will participate in such diverse activities as delving into the lives and works of the great English and European writers through research papers and other activities that intertwine with their Global Studies course. The result of this extensive reading, discussion, and writing will be an appreciation of ideas and the written word as a powerful tool in our world.


1 Credit – Full Year Course

This is a course that studies informational texts and literature for analysis of key ideas and details. There is an emphasis on reading, writing, speaking, and listening. Work on the conventions of standard written English is provided, and research/inquiry work is stressed. This course also includes debate and argument writing. Students collaborate for information and understanding.


1 Credit – Full Year Course

This is a course in rhetorical analysis that serves as an introduction to college-level writing and critical thinking skills. A large focus is using textual evidence to formulate well-organized arguments. Readings will reflect fiction and non-fiction pieces. The overarching theme is that reading helps us because thoughtful, informed citizens, and writing takes on many forms and purposes. Students will take the Common Core ELA Regents in January and culminates with the AP exam in May. This course will help students who are preparing for the English Regents and the SAT.

ENGLISH 11 (American Literature)

1 Credit – Full Year Course

In this course students will trace the development and themes of American literature and discover that, in picturing the American scene, mirroring the American way of life, voicing American ideals and aspirations, it has become a distinctive body of literature with its own unique qualities. Interwoven with reading the literature of this growing and expanding country, the student will develop other language skills, such as writing, speaking, and listening.

In addition, this course combines a study of basic principles and techniques of expository writing, creative writing, and literary criticism. Selected pieces of literature will be analyzed as examples of various writing techniques, modes of discourse, and forms of creative writing. Frequent writing assignments, including a research paper, will be required. This course will help students who are preparing for the English Regents and the SAT.


1 Credit – Full Year Course

This course is designed to meet the requirements set forth in the AP English Course Description published by the College Board. Organized by literary genre, as well as along broad thematic lines, the individual works, thematic focus, and essential questions will vary from year to year. Throughout the course, students will develop and practice skills in close reading, building comprehension, and interpreting and evaluating literature from several time periods through a number of critical approaches.  Students will also develop the academic writing skills necessary for success on the AP Examination in May and in their future college coursework.


1 Credit – Full Year Course

This course is designed for students who wish to be well prepared for college. The course emphasizes development of the writing and critical reading skills expected at the college level. Intensive practice in writing college application essays start the year, followed by a study of myth, legend, folk tale and classic literature with a particular focus on transformation and the hero’s journey. Students will maintain a journal focused on self-examination, reflection and a dedication to growth as writers.


1 Credit- Full Year Course

This course will help provide students with the communication, writing and comprehension skills necessary for success in both college and the public sector. The course will explore world literature, the job application process, resumes, and cover letters, creative writing and various forms of the written and spoken word. The course will also focus on interviewing and public speaking skills. This course is designed to help prepare seniors for their chosen future endeavors.


½ credit- Half year course
Prerequisite: Senior Status

This elective program intends to offer students an opportunity to explore the many forms of creative composition. Included in this course, students will study early examples of storytelling and its influence on modern forms of creative writing. Additionally, students will study compose and develop their own forms of the genre, such as narrative poems, dramatic monologues, creative nonfiction memoir writing and journaling. As participants navigate the course of study during the semester, students will develop their own unique “voice” in their writing and present their final results in a comprehensive portfolio and staged reading.


½ credit- Half year course
Prerequisite: Senior Status

This elective program intends to offer students an opportunity to explore the power of film and its relationship with society both in context and commentary. Throughout the semester, students will embrace the art of film and its many genres, documentary, and narrative fiction filmography, among others. Additionally, critical analysis and evaluation of the cinema will drive the conversation between students and the instructor; therefore, a key focus on review and analytical based writing techniques will occur in this class.

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