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EN 44 – Creative Writing Ms. Saquella-Room 313

I. COURSE DESCRIPTION: The objective of this creative writing course is to guide students as they learn to express themselves in a variety of literary genres. Creative writing requires that students be able to hear, to feel, to touch, to see, and to think and wonder. The exercises in this class are designed to challenge students to channel their thoughts, feelings, and observations into writing. 


The class will attempt to cover the following Unit Plans throughout the semester: Descriptive Writing, Narrative Writing, Expository Writing, Persuasive Writing, Advertising, Visual Imagery, Interpretive Writing, Reflexive Writing, Compare/Contrast, Interview, Personality Profile, Characterization, Point of View, Short Story, Children’s Story, and Poetry.


The Unit Plans have been organized so that the lessons build on one another. Early lessons provide experience in different writing styles. These early lessons also develop student awareness and skill in areas such as imagery, characterization, and point of view. The final lessons require the students to “put it all together;” to write short stories and poetry that includes all the elements they’ve studied.


While we focus on academics, we will also build stable and compassionate individuals who work as a community. In this class, Red Mountain’s Mission is fully recognized: “The mission of Red Mountain High School is to prepare all students to meet the challenges of the 21st century. We strive to provide a strong foundation in reading, writing and mathematics, so the students have the skills and knowledge essential for reaching their potential. As a team of diverse students, parents, faculty, administration, and staff, we are committed to providing a safe environment where learning, responsibility, respect, and self-esteem flourish.”


II. COURSE OBJECTIVES: Students who master this course will be able to do all the following in Creative Writing: 

a. Analyze and evaluate the writings of others and self. 

b. Produce a short story. 

c. Produce various forms of poetry using imagery. 

d. Produce various pieces of writing 

e. Identify markets available for writing and publishing


III. ATTENDANCE: Attendance will be taken daily and absences may affect grades. Students are expected to contact homework partners (study buddies) to determine missing work when absent. They may also stay after school to record missing assignments and get explanations. Students with excused absences will be given one day for each day they are absent to make-up the work that they have missed. Students with unexcused absences will not be allowed to make-up any missing work or test for credit. Refer to the Red Mountain High School Guidelines on absences.


IV. WRITING PORTFOLIOS: Your son/daughter will keep a Writing Portfolio in our class. A Writing Portfolio contains the final versions of student writings, reflections on those writings and the student’s progress and goals this year. It is the most valid statement of the students as writers and thinkers. Students will place all graded writings in these portfolios.


V. NECESSARY MATERIALS: Students should have the following materials for Creative Writing class: two (2) sharp #2 pencils, colored pencils, two (2) black ink pens (non-erasable), two (2) red pens for correcting work, two (2) different colored highlighters, Student Handbook for recording homework, two (2) rolls Scotch tape, one (1) 120 sheet/3 subject/college ruled spiral notebook, mini or pocket dictionary.



1. Be in your seat when the bell rings. 

2. Bring all books and materials to class each day. 

3. Sit in your assigned seat daily. 

4. Raise your hand and wait for permission to speak. 

5. Follow directions the first time they are given. 

6. RESPECT above all! Any student caught cheating or helping others to cheat will receive a zero on that assignment/test.


VII. EVALUATION PROCEDURES: While homework will frequently be graded for accuracy and comprehension, the most important emphasis will always be on completion. Homework will be assigned daily and must be turned in on time for credit. No late work will be accepted unless it is make-up work for an excused absence. There is a list of work assignments posted on a screen in the classroom. Students should be encouraged to review that list daily, record the information in their Student Handbook and share their assignments with you. Parents, please make time to check this handbook daily. This is a great way to stay connected with your student’s learning/progress. I encourage you to go over your student’s homework nightly, checking for accuracy and completion. Additionally, please be aware of the student’s need to manage his or her life such that homework is a priority—sports, music, clubs, visits from relatives, time with friends and family events are just some of the things that can make a student too tired to do homework each night. Creating a balance is a vital skill to learn while in high school. It is the policy of the RMHS English Department not to accept late work for credit on assignments; however, on assignments that carry significant point values/weight, I may accept them to varying degrees of lateness, and for varying degrees of point value. For example: 


Turned In:                                                                               Percent Possible: 

On Time                                                                                 100% 

Next Day                                                                                50% off 

Two Days Late                                                                       75% off 


At teacher discretion, an assessment may be redone if the student did not completely master the intended content or strategy, and the student has demonstrated sincere effort to prepare for the assessment the first time it was given. Redoing assessments is a privilege, not something to be taken for granted. Students must redo assessments within one week of the student’s return/original test date; otherwise the original grade stands. The highest grade awarded for a second attempt will be a “C.” Occasionally, assessments cannot be redone, but instead students may correct their mistakes and receive half credit for each item they correct. Students must redo assessments on their own time, not during direct teaching time in our class. *In order to redo any test, final draft, or quiz, students must first submit the original work signed by a parent and requesting the retest or redo opportunity. The grading scale and Writing Weight Scale are as follows: 


Grading Scale:                                                                         Writing Weight Scale: 

A = 100-90                                                                               Class Participation 15% 

B = 89-80                                                                                 Journal of Stuffology 20% 

C = 79-70                                                                                 Writing Activities 50% 

D = 69-60                                                                                 Presentations 15% 

F = 59 and lower


VIII. TEACHER CONTACT: Open communication is the key to your success, and I welcome any opportunity to discuss your progress. Please feel free to contact me at (480) 472-8228 or I will return your message as soon as possible.