English III is a survey of American literature and literary culture from its inception through the twentieth century. Students will explore the major literary forms, themes, authors, and periods of American literature. They will understand how this literature represents the experiences of people native to America, those who immigrated to America, and those who were brought to America against their will. Emphasis is placed on a rhetorical analysis of the literature to determine how authors achieve a particular purpose or effect. Through focused readings, composition, speaking and listening activities, vocabulary study and research, students will continue to build the literacy skills they need to meet the challenges of high school and beyond.
To become critical consumers of text, students will be exposed to increasingly more complex texts to which they apply those skills. In English language arts, that critical content is both rigorous and relevant and includes high-quality contemporary works as well as the classics of literature. This includes classic myths and stories from around the world, America's founding documents, foundational American literature, and Shakespeare. Students will be enriched as they expand their skills and confidence in English language arts through a comprehensive study.
Goals for this course include:
- Sharpen reading skills: summary, analysis, evaluation, and interpretation.
- Identify explicit and implicit meaning in early American works of historical and/or literary significance and in later works about this time period, including where the text leaves matters uncertain.
- Analyze a text from multiple perspectives (historical, literary, psychological, religious).
- Analyze and evaluate different presentations and interpretations of the same text.
- Analyze literary elements: narrative/poetic/dramatic structure, point of view, style, theme, purpose.
- Analyze language: figurative language, imagery, tone, persuasiveness, connotation, nuance, power, beauty.
- Analyze informational texts: central ideas, interaction of ideas, summarizing, point of view, purpose.
- Analyze arguments: rhetoric, claim development, structure, purpose.
- Sharpen writing skills:
- explanatory: responding to literature; comparing/contrasting; synthesizing information; developing and supporting a thesis; using appropriate and varied transitions between ideas; using precise, domain-specific language; and
- argumentative: making and supporting a claim; using valid reasoning; sequencing ideas; adapting to purpose, audience, and task; using precise, domain-specific language; using the writing process.
- Conduct research: web searches, challenging usage and vocabulary.
- Participate in speaking and listening activities: analysis of oral and written speeches, collaboration with peers.
- Strengthen language skills: conventions, knowledge, vocabulary acquisition and use.