English II

Grade 10 students will study literature that spans centuries, continents, and genres. Each of the four thematically-integrated units encourages close study of this literature and its context. Students will gain valuable cultural insight as they read and write about works depicting the social, personal, religious, and political struggles and triumphs faced by people all over the world and all through history. Students will continue to build their literacy skills by engaging in focused reading, composition, speaking and listening activities, vocabulary study, and research. By the end of the course, students will have gained a broader perspective and will be well-prepared to apply that perspective to the study of American Literature in Grade 11.

Curriculum decisions for this course are guided by the Common Core State Standards. These standards were developed to provide clear and consistent goals for student learning and to ensure that students have the skills they need to be successful beyond high school. These standards define what students need to know and be able to do by the end of each grade. In additional to defining grade-level skills, the ELA standards require that students be exposed to increasingly more complex texts to which they apply those skills. In order for curriculum to align to these standards, it must be both rigorous and relevant. It must also expose students to certain critical content. In English language arts, that content includes classic myths and stories from around the world, AmericaÕs Founding Documents, Foundational American literature, and Shakespeare. English II students will continue their climb up this staircase of skills through their study of the following units:

  • Unit 1: Coming of Age: In this unit, students will read works that have been selected because they reflect the universal theme of crossing the threshold into maturity. The selections cover different centuries, different countries, different races, and different genders. Students will also read historical background and author biographies to enrich their understanding of selected works. Additionally, students will be introduced to the literary, religious, and philosophical traditions that influenced writers from other cultures.
  • Unit 2 The Struggle against Injustice: The works in this unit illustrate a cultural, political, or personal struggle against injustice in some form. As in the previous unit, students will read literature from different centuries, countries, races, and genders. They will meet characters, both fictional and historical, who used the power and beauty of language to expose the injustices they witnessed or experienced. Students will also investigate the historical and biographical background of selected works to enrich their understanding of the literature they read.
  • Unit 4: Perspectives in World Literature: The works in this unit represent a variety of lenses through which readers can look at the world. As in the two previous units, students will read literature from a variety of places, times, and people. They will meet characters and authors who have shaped the way we read as well as the way we look at the world. Students will also investigate the historical, biographical, and critical background of selected works to enrich their understanding of the literature they read.
  • Unit 5: Tradition VS. Change: The works in this unit were selected because they illuminate a conflict between tradition and change. Students continue to be exposed to literature that spans continents, ages, and perspectives. They will analyze the social, political, cultural, and individual struggles depicted in this literature to better understand the existence and the impact of this conflict. And students will continue to investigate the historical and biographical background of selected works to enrich their understanding of the literature they read.

Curriculum Content and Skill Focus

Unit 1: Coming of Age

  • improving reading skills: analysis, evaluation, interpretation
  • identifying explicit and implicit meaning in a variety of genres
  • analyzing historical and cultural context and source material and their effect on meaning
  • analyzing literary elements: character, conflict, theme, narrative/poetic structure, point of view, irony, allusion
  • analyzing language: figurative language, imagery, mood, tone, rhetoric, connotation, nuance in meaning
  • improving writing skills:
    • explanatory: responding to literature, developing a thesis, supporting a thesis, creating an outline, using the writing process
  • participating in speaking and listening activities: listening and analyzing speeches, collaborating with peers
  • strengthening language skills: conventions, knowledge, vocabulary acquisition and use

Unit 2: The Struggle against Injustice

  • improving reading skills: analysis, evaluation, and interpretation
  • identifying explicit and implicit meaning in a variety of genres, including foundational documents
  • analyzing historical and cultural context and source material and their effect on meaning
  • analyzing literary elements/devices: character, conflict, theme, narrative/poetic structure, point of view, foreshadowing, symbolism, allegory irony, allusion
  • analyzing and comparing the representation of a subject in two different mediums
  • analyzing language: figurative language, imagery, mood, tone, connotation, nuance in meaning
  • analyzing arguments: rhetoric, claim development, structure, purpose
  • improving writing skills:
    • explanatory: responding to literature, exploring characterization and theme, constructing an original thesis statement, supporting a thesis, composing strong introductions and conclusions, using the writing process, using technology
    • narrative: focus on language and sentence structure
  • conducting research: web searches, formulating a research question, gathering, evaluating, synthesizing, paraphrasing, summarizing, quoting, documenting information
  • analyzing and participating in speaking and listening activities: collaborative discussions and seminars, research presentation, creating a Power Point presentation
  • strengthening language skills: conventions, knowledge, vocabulary acquisition and use

Unit 4: Perspectives in World Literature

  • improving reading skills: analysis, evaluation, and interpretation
  • identifying explicit and implicit meaning in a variety of genres
  • analyzing historical and cultural context and source material and their effect on meaning
  • analyzing and comparing the representation of a subject in two different mediums
  • analyzing literary elements and devices: point of view, character, plot, conflict, theme, narrative or poetic structure, pacing, allusion, irony, flashback, foreshadowing, symbolism, allegory, magical realism
  • analyzing language: figurative language, imagery, mood, tone, connotation, nuance in meaning
  • developing writing skills:
    • narrative: incorporating engaging literary elements, using figurative language, aligning to purpose, task, and audience
    • explanatory: responding to literature, comparing and contrasting, formulating and supporting a thesis, conveying complex ideas, organizing ideas, writing effective conclusions, using precise language, using the writing process, incorporating technology
    • argumentative: making a claim, supporting a claim, distinguishing claims from counterclaims, using transitions, using formal and objective language, using the writing process
  • analyzing and participating in speaking and listening activities: analyzing rhetoric, purpose in published speeches, collaborative discussions
  • strengthening language skills: conventions, knowledge, vocabulary acquisition and use

Unit 5: Tradition versus Change

  • improving reading skills: analysis, evaluation, and interpretation
  • identifying explicit and implicit meaning in a variety of genres
  • analyzing historical and cultural context and source material and their effect on meaning
  • analyzing and comparing the representation of a subject in two different mediums
  • analyzing literary elements and devices: point of view, character, plot, conflict, theme, narrative or poetic structure, pacing, irony, foreshadowing, symbolism
  • analyzing language: figurative language, imagery, mood, tone, connotation, nuance in meaning
  • analyzing arguments: rhetoric, claim development, structure, purpose
  • developing writing skills:
    • narrative: reflection on theme, supporting ideas
    • explanatory: responding to literature, formulating and supporting a thesis, conveying complex ideas, organizing ideas, using effective transitions, writing effective conclusions, using precise language, using the writing process, incorporating technology
  • conducting research: web searches, formulating a research question, gathering and evaluating research, synthesizing, quoting, paraphrasing, documenting using MLA
  • analyzing and participating in speaking and listening activities: analyzing rhetoric, purpose in published speeches, collaborative discussions, giving a speech
  • strengthening language skills: conventions, knowledge, vocabulary acquisition and use

State: National, Oklahoma, Utah
Grade Level: 9, 10, 11, 12
Category: English Language Arts
Course Length: Year