The English 7 course is designed to emphasize
basic skills in the areas of reading, writing, listening and
speaking. We use the Prentice Hall Literature series plus a wide
variety of novels to introduce students to the formal study of
literature and literary terms. The Holt Middle School Handbook is
used for grammar and mechanics instruction. The basic elements of
grammar, usage, punctuation and capitalization are taught using a
standard text, the student’s own written work and through
literature. Spelling and Vocabulary requirements are drawn from
literature, published books of spelling words, and SAT prep
resources or other resources. Whenever possible, an integrated
approach is used in the teaching of basic skills. Effective writing
techniques are emphasized and considerable time is devoted to the
writing process. Most writing is done in response to literature
read. Reading is, of course, emphasized and students will be
expected to read required novels as well as independently chosen
books. In 7th grade we utilize peer evaluation, conferencing and
other techniques, which are designed to improve written
communication. Computer instruction, stressing word processing, is
also included in the seventh grade language arts curriculum.
Students will be prepared to successfully complete the NYS grade 7
English Language Arts assessment.
In English 7 Enriched the aspects described
above are emphasized with a greater deal of difficulty, designed to
challenge the abilities of our most capable students. Students in
the 7E English class participate in a variety of enrichment units
that could include poetry, novels, research skills, short stories
and newspapers. The writing assignments, while similar to that of
regular English program, are presented in greater depth and a higher
quality of writing, including analysis and critical assessment, is
expected. Students in the enriched program are expected to work with
a minimum of compulsion by the classroom teacher. In order to be
considered for the participation in the 7E program, to continue in
the program for the entire seventh grade year, and to be considered
for the eighth grade Enriched English class, students must meet and
maintain the following criteria:
Students’ score at or above the 75
percentile locally in both reading and total language on
The student must have demonstrated
exceptional ability in the language arts program the previous
year. This ability would be demonstrated in mastery levels of
both writing and reading comprehension. It is assumed that the
student has maintained A’s in achievement throughout the year.
Students labeled as gifted will be given
serious consideration for this program. Inclusion in the grade
six LEP program does not automatically qualify a student,
however, the quality of writing in the student’s portfolio will
be a major factor in determining the student’s placement in this
Students considered for this program must
have effort and conduct grades of G or E. Students must have
demonstrated that they are motivated to excel beyond standard
The above criteria must be maintained
throughout the seventh grade year for the student’s continuation
in this program and consideration for the 8E program.
Fundamental ELA is an Academic Intervention
Service (AIS) for 7th and/or 8th graders who need extra
assistance in language arts. Students included generally are at risk
of scoring at Level I or II on a NYS ELA
assessment or are recommended for inclusion by their 7th or 8th
grade English teacher. Students enrolled in
Fundamental ELA meet every day for 20 minutes in lieu of silent
The eighth grade English program is designed to
provide students with a strong background in basic skills. The
development of reading, writing, listening and speaking skills is
stressed within the language arts classroom. Students will be
required to read several class taught novels as well as
independently chosen titles. Students are expected to demonstrate
their ability to appreciate and to respond to quality literature
through discussion and independent writing assignments. This course
stresses the need for effective written expression with an emphasis
placed on the writing process and the mechanics of language.
Students will be prepared to successfully complete the NYS grade
eight English/Language Arts assessment.
The English 8E program is designed to meet the
needs of the most capable students within the area of language arts
while addressing the same instructional objectives as English 8.
Emphasis is on reading and writing skills with enrichment provided
through individual and group extension projects in these components
of the curriculum. Special units of study may include research,
drama, poetry, and the novel. To be considered for inclusion, and to
remain in the class for the full year, a student must meet and
maintain the following:
The student has maintained an overall ‘A’
average in the area of language arts in seventh grade.
The student achieved at or above the 75
percentile locally on the total language and reading subtests of
The student must be recommended by the
current language teacher.
The student has demonstrated high motivation
and well developed study habits.
The student has demonstrated an ability to
analyze literature and think critically.
The student is a mastery writer, based on
evaluation of the student’s writing portfolio.
The student has demonstrated the ability to
work independently and a curiosity for learning beyond the daily
classroom instruction. Students will be prepared to successfully
complete the NYS eighth grade English/Language assessment.
Recommendations for ninth grade will be based upon a student’s
success in meeting these requirements.
Fundamental ELA is an Academic Intervention
Service (AIS) for 7th and/or 8th graders who need extra assistance
in language arts. Students included generally are at risk of scoring
at Level I or II on a NYS ELA assessment or are recommended for
inclusion by their 7th or 8th grade English teacher. Students
enrolled in Fundamental ELA meet every day for 20 minutes in lieu of
Reading & Writing
A course in reading/writing is required by the
State/District regulations for students whose scores on standardized
tests indicate a need for intensive instruction in these areas.
Reading comprehension, vocabulary, and writing skills are developed
as students read and write about high interest, young adult novels.
Study skills, as well as reading and writing in contents area
courses, are also addressed. Reading/Writing is taught in small
classes every day throughout the year. Parents of students being
scheduled for reading/writing will be notified.