Mrs. Jennifer Smith
Junior English


Tutoring hours:  Lion time, lunch and by appointment

Course Description


 An exploration of American ideas by American authors.  Traces the themes and literary movements in America. Examines the writing process in a variety of genres. Main objectives are: to improve students'  reading, writing, and presenting strategies in order to prepare them for higher education and the work force.


This course also fine tunes different writing strategies and will prepare students for a variety of writing experiences: with the focus on persuasive and argumentative elements. Students will review and reinforce grammar, mechanics, usage, and vocabulary skills throughout the semester.   Improving each student's  writing skills is  the main focus of this class; preparing students for the next level of writing.

Content Standards:

To provide students with a broader understanding of the various types and eras of American literature.

To recognize and identify the progress in American society through literature.

To respond to the literature in a variety of writing styles.

To provide students the opportunity to utilize concepts within the literature to understand themselves, their relationship with others, and the world around them.

To produce clear and coherent writing in which the development, organization, and style are appropriate to task, purpose, and audience.

To develop and strengthen writing  by planning, revising, editing, rewriting, or trying a new approach.

To use technology, including the Internet, to produce and publish writing and to interact and collaborate with others.

To build a foundation for college and career readiness, students need to use writing as a tool for learning and communicating to offer and support opinions, demonstrate understanding of the subjects they are studying, and convey real and imagined experiences and events. They learn to appreciate that a key purpose of writing is to communicate clearly to an external, sometimes unfamiliar audience, and they begin to adapt the form and content of their writing to accomplish a particular task and purpose. They develop the capacity to build knowledge on a subject through research projects and to respond analytically to literary and informational sources. To meet these goals, students must devote significant time and effort to writing, producing numerous pieces over short and extended time frames throughout the year.

Text Types and Purposes

To write arguments to support claims in an analysis of substantive topics or texts, using valid reasoning and relevant and sufficient evidence.

To write informative/explanatory texts to examine and convey complex ideas and information clearly and accurately through the effective selection, organization, and analysis of content.

To write narratives to develop real or imagined experiences or events using effective technique, well-chosen details, and well-structured event sequences.

Research to Build and Present Knowledge

To conduct short as well as more sustained research projects based on focused questions, demonstrating understanding of the subject under investigation.

To gather relevant information from multiple print and digital sources, assess the credibility and accuracy of each source, and integrate the information while avoiding plagiarism.

To draw evidence from literary or informational texts to support analysis, reflection, and research.

Range of Writing

To write routinely over extended time frames (time for research, reflection, and revision) and shorter time frames (a single sitting or a day or two) for a range of tasks, purposes, and audiences.