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University School




Ms. Gina Bailiff                                                                    Email:


Course Description:

The Common Core standards address the strands of reading, writing, language, speaking, and listening in the curriculum.

  • Reading: a study of both fictional and informational texts and the various genres
  • Writing: a study of the writing process
  • Language: a study of the conventions of standard English, language, and vocabulary
  • Speaking and Listening: a study of comprehension and collaboration and the presentation of knowledge and ideas



Mirrors and Windows:  Connecting with Literature:  British Tradition, EMC Publishing, and           supplementary material from the publisher

Elements of Language, Fifth Course (Holt, Rinehart, and Winston)

Looking Beyond the Ivy League (Loren Pope)

MLA Handbook

Models for Writers:  Short Essays for Composition (Alfred Rosa and Paul Eschholz)

Ancillary Materials, The Center for Learning

The Riverside Reader (Joseph Trimmer)


**There will also be music and art representative of the various time periodsIn addition, films, educational videos, and contemporary articles may be used if appropriate and relevant for the lesson.


Possible Novels or Drama for SSR (Sustained Silent Reading): 

Dante Alighieri's The Inferno

Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice

Samuel Beckett's Waiting for Godot

Charlotte Bronte’s Jane Eyre

Emily Bronte’s Wuthering Heights

Lewis Carroll's Alice's Adventures in Wonderland

Paulo Coelho's The Alchemist

Charles Dickens’ Great Expectations; A Tale of Two Cities

John Gardner's Grendel

William Golding’s Lord of the Flies

Aldous Huxley's Brave New World

James Joyce’s A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man

Franz Kafka's The Metamorphosis

Daniel Keye’s Flowers for Algernon

John Knowles’ A Separate Peace  

George Orwell's 1984

Erich Maria Remarque’s All Quiet on the Western Front

William Shakespeare’s King Lear, Hamlet, and/or Macbeth

Robert Louis Stevenson’s The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde and/or Treasure Island

J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit

Oscar Wilde’s The Picture of Dorian Gray and/or The Importance of Being Earnest

Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley's Frankenstein

Tom Stoppard’s Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead

Karl Weber and Participant Media's Food Inc.:  A Participant Guide

T.H. White’s The Once and Future King

Student choice from departmental reading list


Course Requirements:

Homework                                                                  Research Project and/or paper(s)

Class Work (both individual and group)                    Tests and study guides

Essays                                                                         Quizzes

Oral Presentations                                                      Journal Topics

Projects                                                                       Semester Exam(s)

Socratic Seminars                                                      Sustained Silent Reading (SSR)



*  Three-ring notebook with assigned tabs

*  Pens and pencils

*  College-ruled notebook paper

*  Textbook, classroom handouts and/or notes, and any other supplementary materials


Grading Policy:

Students will access individual grades through the program Parent Portal.  Grading will be done on a total point system; point values are based on the importance and complexity of each assignment.  For example, tests will be worth 100 points, and quizzes, projects, and other assignments may vary.


If a student is absent or needs to check on assignments, it is his or her responsibility to make up missing work in accordance with the deadlines outlined in the syllabus.  If there are questions about an assignment or additional materials that the student needs, arrangements need to be made for a time to come after school.  Instructional time will not be used to do this.


Please see the student handbook for the University School policy regarding cheating and plagiarism.


Late work policy:  Please see the Policy for High School English Department which is posted on the web page.  This is extremely important to your child’s success.


Electronic Devices: 

Electronic devices may occasionally be used for class assignments, projects, and activities.  These are allowed to be used in class only when the teacher has given permission to do so.  Students using an electronic device without permission are subject to the consequences outlined in the student handbook.


Classroom Expectations:

* Be on time to class and seated when the bell rings.

* Be prepared for class.  You will not be allowed to return to your locker once class begins.

* You are responsible for and expected to give your very best work.  In order to be successful       in this class, you will be expected to complete all homework and class assignments.

* Be fully present in class.  Listen actively and engage in the learning process.

* Respect the dignity and worth of every person in the classroom.  This includes your peers, your teacher, and the perspectives of those individuals studied in class.  Use “I” statements in class discussion.


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