About English at St. Michael

The English department curriculum encourages the strategic development of students’ reading and writing skills. Each grade level builds on the skills and strategies taught the year before. From freshmen through senior year, students create individual portfolios that document their progression as writers and allows them to self-evaluate in order to continuously improve. Students also develop reading skills by studying all literary genres and by continuously practicing both the ACT and SAT. These literary genres also act as catalysts for the instruction of Christian morality and the Catholic faith. In addition, students receive systematic and consistent vocabulary and grammatical instruction designed to improve standardized testing scores and communication skills. By using technology within each class, the department hopes to empower students for the 21st Century and as citizens who are prepared for the world around them as faith-filled people who can communicate effectively.

Course Offerings:

English I – CP
Level: College Prep
Grade Level: 9
Prerequisite: Department Placement Criteria.
Description: This course is designed for students reading at or near grade level. The course content includes parts of speech, parts of the sentence, phrases, clauses, punctuation usage, and agreement rules. Literature includes poetry, the short story, drama, the novel, and Greek mythology. Vocabulary is studied throughout the year, and a research paper of four – six typed pages is required.

English I – Honors
Level: College Prep
Grade Level: 9
Prerequisite: Department Placement Criteria.
Description: This course is designed to challenge the students having above grade level abilities. It is similar in design to the requirements for College Prep English I, except honors students will read additional novels and write longer expository essays and literary analysis papers. A research paper of four – six typed pages is required.

English II – CP
Level: College Prep
Grade Level: 10
Prerequisite: English I and Department Placement Criteria.
Description: This course is a continuation of College Prep English I. Emphasis is on the expansion of fundamentals and mastery of skills in grammar and expository composition. Grammar includes the correct usage of verbs and pronouns. Special attention is given to sentence structure mistakes. Literature includes all major literary genres. Vocabulary is studied throughout the year, and a research paper of four – six typed pages is required.

English II – Honors
Level: Honors
Grade Level: 10
Prerequisite: English I and Department Placement Criteria.
Description: This course is a continuation of the work initiated in English I. Emphasis is on the mastery of grammar fundamentals and on writing expository compositions and critical papers of literary analysis. Outside reading will supplement the required readings of contemporary and classical authors. A research paper of four – six typed pages is required.

English III – CP
Level: College Prep
Grade Level: 11
Prerequisite: English I, English II, Department Placement Criteria.
Description: This course is a survey course of American literature from the Colonial Age to the present day. Emphasis is on persuasive writing and literary analysis. Grammar fundamentals are reviewed. Vocabulary is studied and a research paper of five – seven typed pages is required.

English III – AP
Level: Advanced Placement
Grade Level: 11
Prerequisite: English I, II, teacher recommendation and Department Placement Criteria.
Description: This course replaces English III (Honors) and prepares the students for the College Board AP English Language and Composition Examination. Achievement of the required score on the AP Examination earns college credit for the student. This course engages students in becoming critical readers and writers of American literature. Various periods present multiple literary genres, which provide texts for concentrated rhetorical analyses. Multiple writing assignments, emphasis on persuasive writing and comprehension, honing mechanics, extended research paper, and oral English comprise the course. Teacher recommendation for entry into the course is required.

English IV – CP
Level: College Prep
Grade Level: 11
Prerequisite: English I, II, and III.
Description: This course includes a complete survey of British literature. Students are expected to show proficiency in grammar fundamentals, composition, extended research paper, and formal library research skills. Literary analysis required.

English IV – AP
Level: Advanced Placement
Grade Level: 12
Prerequisite: English I, II, III (preferably English III AP), teacher recommendation and Department Placement Criteria.
Description: This course replaces English IV (Honors) and prepares the students for the College Board AP English Literature and Usage Examination. Achievement of the required score on the AP Examination earns college credit for the student. The course engages students in the close reading and critical analyses of selected British and world literature from all genres. Students deepen their understanding of the ways writers use language to provide both meaning and pleasure for readers. Students’ writing assignments include analytical, critical, and creative papers. A research paper is required.

English IV – DE 
Level: Dual Enrollment (has the same GPA factor as CP)
Grade Level: 12
Placement Criteria:
– An ACT English subscore of 18 or greater and Composite + English score of 38 or greater.
– Timed writing sample
– SMHS teacher/administrative recommendation
Prerequisite: English I, II, III, teacher recommendation and Placement Criteria as established by LSU’s Dual Enrollment program.
Description: This dual enrollment program affords students the opportunity to take first-semester college English 1001 and second-semester English 1002 through Louisiana State University. Students can earn six credit hours on their college transcripts. The purpose of this course is to advance students’ writing skills in a variety of academic, professional and public genres, with an emphasis on research and argumentation. Each larger writing assignment will be approached as a series of smaller essential tasks ranging from the identification of a research problem or inquiry to the final revision of an essay. Group collaboration and classroom discussion are important elements of the course. Students can expect a minimum of four major writing projects each semester. Parents are responsible for the costs of tuition ($300 per semester).

Speech I and II – College Prep or Honors