The English Department helps students learn to communicate effectively by developing skills in reading, writing, listening, speaking, and viewing. Courses acquaint students with literary works from a range of periods and cultures beginning in the 9th grade with a broad global focus using interdisciplinary approaches. Students then move to either Narrative Studies or Western Literature in the 10th grade. In the 11th and 12th grades, students select from AP English or semester electives.
The goals of the English program in reading, carried out in all course offerings, are to develop students' awareness of the themes and styles of classic literature from around the globe and to make connections among different cultures; to enable students to read any text to determine main ideas, subsidiary points, and supporting evidence; at advanced course levels, to recognize authors’ techniques and strategies and begin to incorporate them into their own writing; and to find intellectual and aesthetic pleasure in reading.
The goal in writing is to teach techniques such as precise word choice, effective sentence structure, logical transitions, unified organization of ideas, clarity of thought, and elegance of expression that enable students to become powerful communicators on personal, academic, and public levels.