Department Grading Policy
“Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.”
– Ralph Waldo Emerson
Studying literature allows us to explore, discover, and recreate the many complex relationships and experiences that make us human. It allows us deeper and more meaningful insight into the ways that we think, feel, respond and react to all of the intricate conflicts and tensions that we encounter every day. In the words of Brock University professor John Lye, “…literature explores the texture and meaning of human experience in a complex, compelling way, and leads us to insight and rich reflection, hence wisdom, concerning our lives and the nature of human experience.”1 Such knowledge builds the creativity and imagination necessary to make our own paths instead of following the one already worn.
In English/Language Arts classes students read extensively in multiple genres from American, British and other world literature. Literary periods begin as early as the Anglo-Saxon period in British literature and continue into the modern period in all genres. As students learn literary forms and terms associated with selections being read, they interpret the possible influences of the historical context on a literary work.
In addition to studying literature, students also plan, draft, and complete written compositions on a regular basis. Students edit their papers for clarity, engaging language, and the correct use of the conventions and mechanics of written English to produce final, error-free drafts.
English SOL 1 and 2
This course is designed for the immigrant student whose primary language is not English. Emphasis is on development of listening, speaking, reading and writing skills in English. Students’ cultural backgrounds are considered and incorporated with instruction. A maximum of two of the four units of English required for graduation may be English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL). Credits of ESOL which are not counted toward the graduation requirement in English may be counted as electives in meeting state graduation requirements.
Students are selected for this course through diagnostic testing.
Practical Writing for ESL
ESL Practical Writing is a course designed for students who are currently in the ESL program or who have been in ESL in the past. It is intended for sophomore and junior level students to aide them in the acquisition of writing skills. The class will have a focus on TAKS preparation while learning writing skills.
English II students read extensively in multiple genres from world literature including selected stories, dramas, novels, and poetry originally written in English or translated to English from oriental, classical Greek, European, African, South American, and North American cultures. Students learn literary forms and terms associated with selections being read. Students interpret the possible influences of the historical context on a literary work.
An emphasis is placed on persuasive forms of writing such as logical arguments, expressions of opinion, and personal forms of writing. These personal forms of writing may include a response to literature, a reflective essay, or an autobiographical narrative.
Excerpts from The Things They Carried
PAP English II
Pre-AP focuses on some of the effects and ramifications of power through literature, poetry, and drama. The ideas that power struggles, perceptions, and possessions is universal—a concept that closely mimics their own teenage lives—enables students to make close personal connections with the literature. The units for this curriculum have been carefully selected to examine the effects of power from all angles, good or bad, allowing students to realize how truly powerful literature and life can be.
Lord of the Flyes by William Golding
Brave New World by Aldous Huxley
Catcher in the Rye by J. D. Salinger
English III The English III course covers American literature beginning with the Native American period through Modernism. It also includes SAT vocabulary preparation, 6-Trait writing skills, writing responses to open-ended questions, and a thorough review of grammar, punctuation, and spelling. Additionally, reading, listening, speaking, and media awareness are developed on a continuing basis throughout the year.
The Crucible by Arthur Miller
The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald
AP English III
AP English Language and Composition
The English III AP course is designed for the study of composition and rhetoric at an advanced level in preparation for the Advanced Placement Exam in English Language and Composition. The course focuses on challenging the students’ critical reading, writing, and thinking skills through the study of fiction and non-fiction texts, with an emphasis on the relationship between the writer’s content, method, and purpose. Students entering the course are expected to have highly developed reading and writing skills. American Literature and its multiple perspectives, styles, and genres form the basis of the coursework.
Required Reading:English IV
The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne
"Self-Reliance" and "The Over-soul" essays by Ralph Waldo Emerson
The Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass by Frederick Douglass
Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston
The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald
The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck
English IV students read extensively in multiple genres primarily from British literature. Study begins with the Anglo-Saxon period and continues through the medieval period, the English renaissance, the romantic period, the Victorian period, and concludes with the modern and post-modern period. Students learn literary forms and terms associated with selections being read while interpreting the possible influences of the historical context on a literary work.
AP English IV
AP English Literature and Compostion
The Advanced Placement course in English Literaturea and Composition is designed to promote and enhance the students' critical understanding of literature through the study of multiple genres and styles. As a college level class fo high-performing readers and writers, the course emphasizes close reading of complex texts in conjunction with which provides and opportunity for students to earn three hours of college credit, is an integral part of the course.
Frankenstein by Mary Shelley
Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte
Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad
Hamlet by William Shakespeare
English IV Dual Credit
Dual Credit is an English Composition course offered at Pearland High School through Alvin Community College. Students can earn college credit for English 1301 and 1302 at ACC as well as satisfying their English requirement for PHS. Dual Credit courses require a fee paid to ACC before students can earn credit for the course. Each semester is a new course and requires a separate payment.
Eligibility requirements: Students must score at least a 2200 on the English/Language Arts TAKS test with a minimum score of 3 on the writing portion, or they must pass the Texas Higher Education Assessment (THEA). Students must receive approval from the administration prior to enrollment.
In the first semester, students study writing, rhetoric and their conventions, emphasizing the organization of materials to produce coherent, unified essays, which support thesis statements. This course also emphasizes critical thinking skills to express ideas in clear, concise language that is grammatically correct, interesting, and relevant in purpose for a specific audience.
During the second semester, students study poetry and drama to analyze the main principles of effective writing, synthesizing and evaluating critics’ interpretations of poetry, drama, or a classic work of literature to produce coherent, unified research papers, which support thesis statements. This course focuses on using MLA guidelines in the formation of a thesis-driven research paper that integrates original thought with the conversations of outside criticism and demonstrates a mastery of writing conventions through the writing process.