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The goal of the English Department is to help students attain a liberal arts perspective through the comprehensive study of and exposure to language and literature, especially as a reflection of human values and cultures, a presentation of the historical development of ideas, an opportunity to respond to and appreciate different life experiences, and the development of communications skills.

Objectives:
  1. To provide a wide variety of literary experiences through the study of American, English and global literature.
  2. To develop an appreciation of content, purpose and structure in literature.
  3. To provide training and practice in grammar, vocabulary development and composition skills that enable the students to communicate effectively.
  4. To provide, through language and literature studies, the opportunities for inquiry, collaborative learning and critical thinking.
  5. To integrate technological tools into all areas of the English learning experience.
Requirements:
Four credits in English are required at St. Joseph’s Academy:
  • One credit of World Literature is required of freshmen.
  • One credit of American Literature is required of sophomores.
  • One credit of British Literature is required of juniors.
  • One credit of English courses is required of seniors.
Note:
Seniors who are NOT taking AP/ACC Senior English are required to take two elective one-semester courses: one must be a writing course, and one must be a literature course.

Courses Available for 2021-22

List of 20 items.

  • EN Literature and Composition

    Grade 9
    Year-long course, 1 credit

    In this course framed around a global perspective of literature, freshmen study grammar, basic composition skills, including an introduction to the essay form, literary genres, classical mythology, novels, and vocabulary. Students engage in writing argumentative essays as well as literary analysis compositions. All units of study focus on essential questions that relate to all humanity across cultures.

    Prerequisite: none
  • EN Literature Analysis and Composition

    Grade 10
    Year-long course, 1 credit

    In this course, sophomores study literature using a thematic approach. Students build on previous grammar instruction by studying more complex sentence structures and punctuation, and by building strong rhetorical skills and an academic vocabulary. Students continue with the study of vocabulary, usage, and test taking strategies in preparation for the ACT. Students develop advanced writing skills through increased academic research, and composing in multiple modes, including but not limited to, narrative, evaluative, and argumentative pieces. Students continue honing their understanding and use of the MLA style guide, with an emphasis on academic research. 

    Prerequisite: none
  • EN Honors Literature Analysis and Composition

    Grade 10
    Year-long Course, 1 credit

    In this course, sophomores study literature using a thematic approach and course essential questions. Students build on previous grammar instruction by studying more complex sentence structures and punctuation, and by building strong rhetorical skills and an academic vocabulary. Students continue with the study of vocabulary, and review grammar, usage, and test taking strategies in preparation for the ACT. Students develop their own research question about a text and use increased academic research and literary criticism to compose a research paper, using the MLA style guide. Students also compose in multiple modes of writing, including but not limited to, narrative, evaluative, and argumentative pieces. As a part of the department’s honors program, the course includes independent supplementary reading, research, and extensive writing.

    Prerequisite: “B+” average and department approval
  • EN British Literature and Composition

    Grade 11
    Year-long Course, 1 credit

    In this year-long course, juniors study important literary movements and themes that include major selected works and writers that span from the Anglo-Saxon period through the 21st century. In addition, they continue the practice of composition skills with particular emphasis on research and further vocabulary study. Juniors also review grammar, usage and test-taking strategies in preparation for the ACT.

    Prerequisite: none
  • EN Honors British Literature and Composition

    Grade 11
    Year-long course, 1 credit

    In this year-long course, juniors study important literary movements, major writers and selected works from the Anglo-Saxon period through the 21st century. In addition, they continue the practice of composition skills with particular emphasis on the research paper and further vocabulary study. Juniors also review grammar in preparation for the ACT. As a part of the department’s honors program, the course includes independent supplementary reading and research and extensive writing practice.

    Prerequisite: “B+” average in current honors course or A in other English course and department approval
  • EN AP/ACC Senior English

    Literature and Writing Course

    Grade 12

    Year-long Course, 1 credit

    The first semester of the AP/ACC course focuses on reading non-fiction and on writing and composing for specific purposes, audiences, and contexts. Class discussion and readings address the function of rhetoric and of composing in a variety of contexts and audiences. Students utilize current research methodologies on topics of interest, using academic research to move from a broad to more focused question always considering audience and purpose. While engaged in composing, students will learn to respond constructively to their peers’ texts and to use peer responses, along with extensive instructor feedback, to improve the quality of their work. The second semester of the AP/ACC course provides the student with a serious study of imaginative literature and gives a comprehensive introduction to the principal forms of fiction, poetry and drama. Writing assignments focus on the personal essay, the literary paper and novel studies including research methods. While engaged in composing, students will learn to respond constructively to their peers’ texts and to use peer responses, along with extensive instructor feedback, to improve the quality of their own work.

    Prerequisite: “B+” average and department approval

    AP Exam: AP English Language and Composition
    AP Exam: AP English Literature and Composition
    Students are required to either take the AP exam and/or register for SLU credit.

    SLU 1818 ACC: ENGL 1900x65 Advanced Strategies Rhetoric and Research
    SLU 1818 ACC: ENGL 2250x65 Conflict, Social Justice, and Literature
    Students have the opportunity to earn 6 college credits for this year-long course.
  • EN ACP Writing and Research

    Writing Course

    Grade 11, 12
    Semester Course, .5 credit

    This semester course integrates critical reading, writing, and thinking skills. Sequenced reading and writing assignments build cumulatively to more complex assignments. Students write in multiple genres beginning with a personal narrative, and moving through argument that is supported by advanced research methodologies. Assignments focus on writing and composing for particular purposes, audiences, and contexts. Students utilize both formal and informal writing, drafting and revising, editing for correctness, synthesizing source material, and documenting sources accurately.

    Prerequisite: “B+” average in current honors course or A in other English course and department approval

    Registering for college credit is required for this course.

    UMSL ACP: ENGL 1100 First Year Writing
    Students have the opportunity to earn 3 college credits for this semester course.
  • EN College Prep Writing

    Writing Course

    Grade 12

    Semester Course, .5 credit

    This is a course for students who want to gain confidence in their writing skills before going to college. It is designed as a “lab” course that combines reading and writing inquiry as necessary in becoming a writer. Utilizing the 6 Writing Traits (voice, organization, idea creation, conventions, word choice, and sentence fluency) students work through a writing process in class to revise and polish final drafts. Students will write different types of papers such as narrative, review, proposal, argument, and analysis. Several of these writing types will include research reading and inclusion along with reading mentor texts/writings of the types of papers being written at the time.

    Prerequisite: none
  • EN Creative Composition

    Writing Course

    Grade 11, 12
    Semester Course, .5 credit

    Students become authors in this class that concentrates on the development of creative writing skills. They will step outside of the box of academic writing and explore their creative sides. A special emphasis is placed on strategies for creating imagery and appealing to sensory details by showing-and-not-telling. Students will learn the importance of word choice, characterization and creating effective dialogue. Techniques for brainstorming and editing their own, as well as their peers’ work, will be implemented. Since learning to give and receive constructive criticism is a key part of life, students will review one another’s work in order to give voice to their opinions, and allow student authors to hear critical feedback about their creations. Students will compose many unique pieces including a reflective journal, a personal vignette, memoir as well as several short essays and poems.

    Prerequisite: none
  • EN Discussion and Debate

    Grade 12
    Semester Course, .5 credit

    Elective Course: This course does not count toward the four credits needed for graduation.

    The ability to communicate effectively and present ideas clearly is perhaps the most important skill people need to have in order to be successful in any career. Good communication skills are key in many situations. This course will explore many formats including symposium, group problem solving, and one-on-one debate and panel discussions. Students will develop skills in research, writing, leadership and higher order thinking as the class writes and orally debates contemporary issues.

    Prerequisite: none
  • EN Film Appreciation

    Grade 12
    Semester Course, .5 credit

    Elective Course: This course does not count toward the four credits needed for graduation.

    Students will leave this course with a comprehensive way to look at films that goes beyond saying, “I liked it.” Much like a literature class, Film Appreciation is designed to look at the many choices behind the creation of a piece of work. Students will look at the purpose behind aesthetic decisions of screen-writers, directors, and cinematographers. Additionally, students will study a basic history of film from the silent era, talkies, the Golden Age of Hollywood, to the present innovations of technology and blockbuster movies. The course will discuss the collaborative process of film-making, important moments and movie-makers, and personal reactions to films.

    Prerequisite: none
  • EN Bearing Witness: Holocaust Literature of Extraordinary Lives

    Literature Course

    Grade 12

    Semester Course, .5 credit

    This course allows students to study extraordinary lives of the Holocaust through several different genres of literature, including memoirs, novels, poetry, primary documents and short stories in an attempt to gain a better understanding of the Holocaust and its implications in the contemporary world. Students will learn of the origins of Anti-Semitism and analyze the development of the Holocaust and its effects through the lenses of Nazis, women, children and “others.” The class requires in-depth critical analysis, challenging introspective responses both verbal and written, group discussion, and reflection, evaluation of primary documents, use of multiple modes of technology, personal leadership and three ongoing, culminating reflective projects “bearing witness” to one’s personal journey through the course.

    Prerequisite: none
  • EN Honors Shakespeare

    Literature Course

    Grade 12

    Semester Course, .5 credit

    This course examines the principal plays of Shakespeare. It engages students in his timeless characters, his riveting plots, and his universal human themes. It introduces students to his poetry and sonnets and principal dramatic genres (history, comedy and tragedy), through reading, discussion, film and acting. It investigates the historical and social contexts in which he wrote, placing emphasis on his innovations and influence in the realms of language, literature and theatre. Students will respond to the plays in writing, through journals and literary analysis papers.

    Prerequisite: “B+” average in current honors course or “A” in another English course and department approval
  • EN Honors Voices of Human Rights

    Literature or Writing Course

    Grade 12

    Year-Long Course, 1 credit

    (.5 Credit English and .5 Credit Social Studies)

    This is a cross-curricular English and Social Studies course. The course will discuss major violations of human rights around the globe over the past 40 years - with an emphasis on genocides. It will also cover violations in North Korea, Rwanda, Cambodia, Bosnia and current conflicts. The overwhelming theme/response to all aspects of this course is outrage at how these violations could occur in our modern world and disbelief that this is the first time many are hearing about them. For each conflict studied, students will read, discuss, debate, engage and attempt to find solutions for these large scale problems. Additionally, a large part of this course will be the culminating project. This project will impact all aspects of academic growth, and it will be worth it.

    Note: This is an honors class, but all students are welcome - there is no test or academic minimum to receive honors credit.

    Prerequisite: none
  • EN Identities in Literature

    Literature Course

    Grade 12

    Semester Course, .5 credit

    As Maya Angelou’s poem says, “We are more alike, my friends, than we are unalike.” This course will examine perspectives, themes, and voices from those often underrepresented to understand the commonalities and the differences that make up the human experience. Groups are marginalized, oppressed, and often silenced based on many factors. This course will explore some of those factors through short stories, novels, speeches, plays, and film. It is also important to understand multiple viewpoints and understandings, while aligning with common themes. The goal of this course will be to explore current and past injustices to understand how power can shape perceptions and see how people resist, fight, and change the way people are viewed. The goal is to celebrate diversity by embracing, studying, and experiencing it.

    Prerequisite: none
  • EN Irish Literature

    Literature Course

    Grade 12

    Semester Course, .5 credit

    Students examine a variety of critically acclaimed works (prose, poetry, and drama) and the role storytelling played in the construction of a sense of Irishness and Irish Nationalism. Students will read literature that begins with Celtic Ireland’s myths and legends to Modern Ireland’s writers who helped create an Irish national pride. Important historical and cultural events will be identified and analyzed in order to offer increased understanding of Irish literature’s evolution. The goal of the course is for students to develop an appreciation of Ireland’s literature and the contribution of Irish writers to the corpus of world literature. Students will be evaluated through quizzes, tests, research and a minimum of three essays.

    Prerequisite: none
  • EN Journalism

    Writing Course

    Grade 11, 12

    Semester Course, .5 credit

    Students discuss the role and influence of the press in modern society and the concept of responsible journalism, drawing from media of print, online, and broadcast. They learn the fundamentals of reporting, including interviewing and how to write in journalistic-style through the writing of news, feature, sports, and editorial pieces. The class is hands-on and through a variety of activities, members of the class are both students of journalism and practicing journalists, with the potential to have their work appear in the school newspaper The Voice.

    Prerequisite: none
  • EN Literature of Controversy

    Literature Course

    Grade 12

    Semester Course, .5 credit

    Writers and works that have been banned or censored or that deal with controversial issues are the focus of this course. Readings from modern and contemporary writers of national and international consequence deal with such subjects as the role of women, the repression of minorities, the struggle for political freedom, war and the challenges of scientific progress. Students study a variety of genres: novel, short story, poetry, drama, essay and film. The class responds to the issues through group discussion and in a variety of writing assignments.

    Prerequisite: none
  • EN Modern American Classics in Fiction

    Literature Course

    Grade 12

    Semester Course, .5 credit

    This course answers the question “What makes a great American novel?” That is, one that will continue to receive critical acclaim and be considered a classic throughout the years as a part of America’s cultural heritage. At the same time, students will define the “American Dream” and explore how its definition has evolved throughout modern fiction. Students will read required works, participate in class discussions of those works, complete written assignments including literary analysis papers and view films of additional narratives of the authors chosen for study. Works of such authors as Ernest Hemingway, F. Scott Fitzgerald, William Faulkner, Edith Wharton, John Steinbeck and others are a focus.

    Prerequisite: none
  • EN Special Projects in Journalism

    Grade 9, 10, 11, 12
    Year-long Course, .25 credit

    Elective Course: This course does not count toward the four credits needed for graduation. This course may be repeated for credit.

    Students in Special Projects in Journalism will work on student media in either print or broadcast. This minicourse will meet once a week during unstructured time or before/after school. It is also expected that members will work outside of regular school hours, and is based on participation on and contribution to St. Joe media, The Voice or St. Joe TV. Students will work in groups and individually to create work for St. Joe media. Tasks will vary and skills learned can include researching stories, publishing original writing and photography and creating print or digital layout through Adobe software Indesign, Photoshop or Premiere Pro. Students will be required to produce a certain number of pieces per school year in order to receive credit for this pass/fail course.

    Prerequisite: none

CO-CURRICULAR ACTIVITIES

The following co-curricular activities are available in this discipline. For more information, please click the link.

Departments

English Department

List of 6 members.

  • Photo of Elizabeth Kelley

    Ms. Elizabeth Kelley 

    English, Department Chair
    (314) 394-4127
  • Photo of Kelly Berry

    Mrs. Kelly Berry 

    English
    (314) 394-4099
  • Photo of Katie Kilcullen

    Mrs. Katie Kilcullen 

    English
    (314) 394-4138
  • Photo of Daniella Moshi

    Ms. Daniella Moshi 

    English
    (314) 394-4128
  • Photo of Katie Richardson

    Mrs. Katie (Kieffer) Richardson 99

    English
    (314) 394-4089
  • Photo of Amy Hanson Summers

    Ms. Amy Hanson Summers 

    Computer Science & Engineering - Department Chair, English
    (314) 394-4079
St. Joseph’s Academy is a private, Catholic high school for girls in St. Louis, Missouri, sponsored by the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet. Our mission is to provide quality Catholic education for young women in an environment that challenges them to grow in faith, knowledge, and respect for self and others. Our community expects these young women to make a profound impact in the world.

St. Joseph's Academy

2307 South Lindbergh Boulevard
St. Louis, MO 63131
Phone: 314-394-4300
Fax: 314-965-9114
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