Students read and analyze literature that includes poetry, novels, folklore, and myth, using what they learn to enhance their own writing. The course begins with the steps of the writing process, which includes identifying parts of speech and using them correctly and effectively. A study of writing style focuses on slang, sentence variety, and transitions. Students learn how characters, setting, and plot contribute to literary fiction as they identify and explain these components and use them creatively in their own narrative essays. Reading poetry allows students to focus on figurative and descriptive language, which they apply to write descriptive essays. Students also learn about the themes and characteristics of myth and folklore. A study of nonfiction focuses on research and organization as students produce objective informational essays. Students learn active reading and research skills that enable them to recognize bias and the techniques of persuasion in different genres, including biographical writing. They then write persuasive essays based on their own beliefs or opinions.
“All Summer in a Day” by Ray Bradbury
“Rip Van Winkle” by Washington Irving
“The Old Demon” by Pearl S. Buck
“The Third Level” by Jack Finney
“A Day’s Wait” by Ernest Hemingway
“The Fox and the Grapes” by Aesop
“The Lion and the Mouse” by Aesop
“The Man, the Boy, and the Donkey” by Aesop
“The Wooden Tablet” by an anonymous author
“American Floats in Space” by Walter Sullivan
“Chomp! Meat-Eating Plants” by Catherine Clarke Fox
“Space Weather 101” from NASA
“The California Invasive Plant Inventory” by California Invasive Plant Council
The Call of the Wild by Jack London
“The Highwayman” by Alfred Noyes
“Annabel Lee” by Edgar Allan Poe
“Dove” by Court Smith
“Fishing” by Court Smith
“Owl” by Court Smith
“Salmon” by Court Smith
“Sailboat” by Court Smith
Various haiku by Matsuo Bashō
“in Just” by e. e. cummings
“To You” by Langston Hughes
“My November Guest” by Robert Frost Inaugural Address from John F. Kennedy
“On War” by James Boswell
“Camping Out” by Ernest Hemingway
The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin by Benjamin Franklin
“Blood, Toil, Tears, and Sweat: Address to Parliament” by Winston Churchill
“Buying Gloves in Gibraltar” by Mark Twain
“An Enlightening Tale” by Fernando Sorrentino
“A Little Fable” by Franz Kafka
“The Trickster Tricked” by an anonymous author
Little Women by Louisa May Alcott
Read and analyze genres of poetry.
Read and analyze short stories to examine their characters, writing styles, and genres.
Read and analyze The Call of the Wild.
Write an informational essay. Read and analyze speeches and other nonfiction texts to better understand and recognize persuasive techniques.
Read and analyze The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin.
Read and analyze Little Women.
Write a persuasive essay.