Language Arts Curriculum Grade 6-12

  • Language Arts

    “All true literature rises from this childish, hopeful certainty that all people resemble each other.”
    Orhan Pamuk 1952–  Turkish novelist: My Father's Suitcase: the Nobel Lecture (2006)

    Our Mission is to create a safe and caring climate and culture in which we prepare, engage, educate, empower, and inspire all learners in partnership with their surrounding community to be successful in today’s and tomorrow’s society.  The Language Arts Department is committed to helping all students develop the healthy habit of reading, writing, and communicating effectively.  As lifelong learners, students  will use these healthy habits to think critically about everything they read, see, and hear, and will be empowered to effectively express themselves.

    We believe that:

    • The enjoyable habit of reading can happen at any age
    • Language Arts fosters positive relationships among students, teachers, and our community
    • Language Arts encourages students to create community by experiences and hearing from multiple perspectives.
    • Language Arts creates a culture where students feel successful in all areas of literacy: reading, writing, speaking, and listening. 

    We are committed to:

    • Helping students find something they want to read
    • Helping students develop deeper questions that lead to inspiring discussions
    • Creating a safe environment for all to share their thoughts and opinions
    • Providing the tools for success in literacy 

    The Junior High sites use Collections as the primary instructional resource.  At this stage of learning, students are digging deeper into questioning, comprehension, structures in grammar, and writing.  We believe that it is critical  for junior high students to continue fostering a love for reading and finding books of interest that they will read for pleasure.

    Minnesota high school students are required to have four years of Language Arts courses.  Students in our high schools have 12 trimester requirements for the completion of English Language Arts credits.  Ninth and Tenth grade students participate in yearlong LA 9 and LA 10 and have the option of taking Honors LA 9  and Honors LA 10 in the respective year.  Students in grades 11-12 are required to take a minimum of two writing courses, two communication courses, and two literature courses and can fulfill the 12 credits with other language arts electives.  AP Literature and AP Language are year long options for 11th and 12th grade students .  All courses are standards based and seek to help students develop a love for literature, writing and communication.

    English Language Arts 6-8

    At the middle level, students receive a concentrated focus on reading and writing skills. They improve their reading strategies such as predicting, visualizing, connecting, questioning, clarifying and evaluation through using Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, COLLECTIONS. This modern and comprehensive textbook series has a literature component, Close Reading practice book,  and a writing book focused on developing an argumentative essay, an informative essay, and a literary analysis. Throughout the English Language Arts program, students work with computer programs such as word processing, PowerPoint and desktop publishing. Reading progress is monitored using STAR assessment given in the fall, winter, and spring. Teachers may also use Six Minute Solution as a way of developing and practicing reading fluency.  Some language arts classes may be co-taught with an english language teacher or a special education teacher. All junior high language arts teachers are committed to helping their students find books that are enjoyable to read, and therefore help foster the idea of reading for pleasure.