Grand Traverse Academy 2018-19 Secondary Course Catalog 16 High School Core Courses Language Arts 9A Freshman Writing (Grade 9 – One Semester) Welcome to high school! The objective of this one- semester composition course is to teach students the skills they need to write well throughout their high school career. To that end, students will learn to identify and create a range of innovative pieces that fall within three particular writing types: argumentative, informative/explanatory, and narrative. An array of mentor texts and writing strategies will be used in order to help students become confident writers in their own right. Students will write every day, producing numerous pieces of varying length, in order to explore elements of audience and purpose. Since the most important step of writing is rewriting, students will learn how to edit both their own writing and the writing of their peers in a respectful workshop setting in order to perfect the alignment of their writing to the appropriate audience and purpose. While doing so, students will be challenged to master the advanced grammar and syntax skills required for clear writing and future success, no matter what educational path they choose to follow. 9B American Literature & Composition (Grade 9 – One Semester) The objective of this one-semester course is to engage students in becoming skilled readers of prose and poetry written in a variety of periods and disciplines, as well as acquiring the close and critical skills needed to fully analyze and write nonfiction essays. This course will focus on the study of American literature, in which students will not only become aware of the great, controversial, and interesting ideas contained in America’s literary history, but also examine the interactions between the writer’s purpose, subject, and audience expectations. Additionally, students’ working vocabulary will expand through an intensive vocabulary study. It is vital to us that we prepare our incoming high school students with the basic skills they need to read texts of steadily increasing complexity that they will encounter throughout their high school careers, and this course will lay the foundation for this interaction with complex texts. ELA 9 Honors Seminar (Grade 9) This seminar is intended for students who would like to take an AP English Language Arts course during their junior or senior year. An approved GTA English Language Arts Honors application is necessary before registering, and students must maintain a B (83 percent) or higher grade to remain in the course. The workload in honors English sections is highly challenging, as are the reading selections and schedules. All honors and AP students are expected to complete a summer reading assignment, which will be due on the first day of school. Students in this honors seminar will learn strategies to be critical consumers of texts, as the ability to access, navigate, and evaluate information is a crucial skill of citizens in contemporary society. Throughout the course, students will develop their knowledge of textual elements and structures, enabling them to engage in close reading of increasingly complex texts. They will explore the role nonfiction plays in their daily lives and identify and analyze the text structures and features of informational text in print and digital formats. They will also develop analytical skills and strategies while moving from an array of fictional texts, including micro fiction, short stories, and novels, to a variety of nonfiction texts, including a range of advertisements across marketing sub-genres, to analyze how advertisers market a product and persuade consumers. Students will apply their knowledge of informational texts to read critically, making inferences and analyzing bias. Students’ knowledge of argument will be extended through immersion and study of two related genres: personal narrative and personal essay, culminating in their writing their own personal essay. 10A British Literature & Composition (Grade 10 – One Semester) Shakespeare, Chaucer, Golding – we’ve all heard the names, but have we read the texts? Studying British Literature at this point in their high school careers will not only expose students to the cultures of England over the centuries, but cultivate an understanding and appreciation for canonical literature that will support them in their future studies. Course study will include a variety of texts taken from the major periods of British