• English
     Department Highlights

    Advanced Placement Courses: The English Department offers AP Language and Composition in the 11th grade and AP Literature and Composition in the 12th grade. The teachers are committed to the highest standards required by the College Board. We encourage any student committed to the AP challenge to sign up. Please see Ms. Rieger's and Mr. Darnell's web pages for course syllabi. 

    Writing Workshop: Writing Workshop is a course designed for the heterogeneous learning experience. This unique course focuses on skill improvement in a unconventional way with students from all backgrounds, grades, and levels. Advanced students are encouraged to elect the class as mentors while concentrating on ways to get their work published. 

    * Keystone Exams:  Keystone Exams are intended to be given at the end of the course for which they are associated.  The three subjects currently scheduled for Keystone Exams are Algebra, Biology, and Literature (associated with our 10th grade English).  Like the preparation for the PSSA, Common Core Standards will be strategically embedded through carefully designed lesson plans, and student data will drive many of the targeted performance goals.

    Senior Graduation Project: Each 12th grade student is required to complete a culminating project in order to graduate. The goals of the project are to provide students with choices so he or she can demonstrate strengths; create a valid, equitable, and reliable learning experience for all students; create an opportunity for students to self-direct and reflect on their work; and encourage students to explore a topic of personal interest to promote lifelong learning skills. See Ms. Rieger's webpage for more information. 

    Theater Program:  Working in concert with Acting, a Language Arts elective, the high school produces a yearly dramatic play and musical. The quality reputation of our high school productions continues year after year. Any student interest may participate. See Mr. Darnell, Ms. Imhoff, or Ms. Durland for more information. 

    Newspaper and Literary Magazine:  Our high school Journalism and Creative Writing classes are responsible for producing a quarterly newspaper and a yearly literary magazine, Valhalla. These electives are open to all students. Though encouraged, a student does not need to take the electives to participate in the newspaper and Venture activities after school. See Ms. Rieger or Mr. Darnell for more information.

    UM Reads: UM Reads is the high school's reading series created to encourge all writers 9-12 to submit and share work in an entertaining public platform. UM Reads showcases in the LGI or library 2-3 times per year. Work can be submitted to the Valhalla staff for consideration. 

    Pulse/Viking Channel:  Though not immediately associated with the Language Arts program in the high school, PULSE and the Viking Channel provide a number of students with the opportunity to improve speaking, reading, writing, and listening skills. The department also has a Film and Television course, which compliments these extracurricular activities. Open to any interested student. See Mr. Schurtz for more information. 

    English as a Second Language: As the demands of ESL grow, our teachers have been enthusiastically pursuing seminars, courses, and workshops that aid them in improving instruction. Open to students in need of English as a Second Language support. See Ms. Nagy and Ms. Tubiello for more information.