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.

Courses Available for 2019-20

List of 22 items.

  • EN World 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 Honors World 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. As a part of the department’s honors program, the course includes independent supplementary reading, research and extensive writing.

    Prerequisite: All incoming freshmen scoring in the 95th percentile on the ITBS Reading portion or Advanced Status with a scale score of 779 or above on the MAP ELA Communication Arts section.
  • EN American Literature and Composition

    Grade 10
    Year-long course, 1 credit

    In this course, sophomores study American literature using a thematic approach that includes diverse and major writers and selected works from the colonial period through the 21st century. Students build on previous grammar instruction, by studying more complex sentence patterns and continuing to build a strong rhetorical and academic vocabulary. Students continue to work on more advanced writing skills, through the development of research skills, and composing narrative and argument pieces written in MLA format.

    Prerequisite: none
  • EN Honors American Literature and Composition

    Grade 10
    Year-long Course, 1 credit

    In this course, sophomores study American literature using a thematic approach that includes diverse and major writers and selected works from the colonial period through the 21st century. Students build on previous grammar instruction, by studying more complex sentence patterns and continuing to build a strong rhetorical and academic vocabulary. Students continue to work on more advanced writing skills, through the development of research skills, and composing narrative and argument pieces written in MLA format. 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 and department approval
  • EN AP/ACC Senior English

    Grade 12
    Year-long Course, 1 credit

    Literature and Writing Course

    AP English Language and Composition and AP English Literature and Composition
    ACC Rhetoric and Composition and ACC Social Conflicts and Literature

    The first semester of the AP/ACC course focuses on reading non-fiction works 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 own work. Students may elect to take the AP English Language and Composition exam OR take the course for SLU 1818 credit.
    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. Students may elect to take the AP English Literature and Composition exam or take the course for SLU 1818 credit. Students have the opportunity to earn six college credits for this year-long course.

    Prerequisite: “B+” average and department approval
  • EN ACP Writing and Research

    Grade 12
    Semester Course, .5 credit

    Writing Course

    This semester course integrates critical reading, writing, and thinking skills and studies actual writing practices. 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 and department approval. Registering for college credit is required for this course.
  • EN College Prep Writing

    Grade 12
    Semester Course, .5 credit

    Writing Course

    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 in which students work through the writing process in class to revise and polish final drafts. Students will write different kinds of papers (two to five pages) such as narration, description, analysis, argument and persuasion. The persuasion paper reviews research skills. Time is spent on review of problem areas in grammar and on sentence development. Readings are short examples of the types of papers being written at the time.

    Prerequisite: none
  • EN Creative Composition

    Grade 11, 12
    Semester Course, .5 credit

    Writing Course

    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 each other’s work in order to give voice to their opinions, and allow authors to hear critical feedback about their creations. Students will compose many unique pieces including a reflective journal, a personal vignette, memoir and short story as well as several short essays and poems. At the end of the course, students will create
    a portfolio that displays the creativity they have demonstrated throughout the semester.

    Prerequisite: none
  • EN Discussion and Debate

    Grade 11, 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, 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

    Grade 12
    Semester Course, .5 credit

    Literature Course

    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 a lengthy culminating reflective project “bearing witness” to one’s personal journey through the course.

    Prerequisite: none
  • EN Honors Shakespeare

    Grade 12
    Semester Course, .5 credit

    Literature Course

    This course examines the principle 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 and department approval
  • EN Honors Voices of Human Rights

    Grade 12
    Double Period Semester Course, 1 credit

    Literature or Writing Course

    (.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, Commonalities, and Differences in Literature

    Grade 12
    Semester Course, .5 credit

    Literature Course

    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

    Grade 12
    Semester Course, .5 credit

    Literature Course

    Students examine a variety of critically acclaimed works (prose, poetry, and drama) in Irish literature. Students will read a variety of writers including such works as Yeats, Joyce, Wilde, Shaw, Enright, Donoghue, O’Faolain and some lesser-known, yet significant writers. 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 the students to become more familiar with a particular group of writers who have contributed a great deal to the corpus of world literature. Students will be evaluated through quizzes, tests, research and a minimum of three essays.

    Prerequisite: none
  • EN Journalism

    Grade 11, 12
    Semester Course, .5 credit

    Writing Course

    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

    Grade 12
    Semester Course, .5 credit

    Literature Course

    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

    Grade 12
    Semester Course, .5 credit

    Literature Course

    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 Reading Plus

    Grade 9, 10, 11, 12
    Semester Course, .5 credit

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

    This class is an elective and will not take the place of other required English classes. The course is designed to elevate reading levels, deepen comprehension and analytical thinking about texts, and increase vocabulary, speed and fluency through specific skill sets for students in grades 9-12. Students will set goals and plan strategies for their own improvement and document progress. A minimum total of 35 hours of time will be spent on the Reading Plus program in class and a minimum of two years of comprehension and vocabulary growth can be expected, as well as doubled reading speed. Though this class is open to any student who wants to improve reading speed, fluency, comprehension, vocabulary and analysis skills, priority will be given to students showing a need, based on standardized test scores and benchmark assessments. Class is limited to 25 students. As an independent study course, students will be required to report weekly with the course instructor and be responsible for weekly deadlines.

    Prerequisite: department recommendation
  • 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 mini-course will meet as a homeroom period on A and E days. 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 7 members.

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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