Senior 3 - English Language Arts

Course Description

Senior 3 is designed to expand students’ intellectual horizons with material that is challenging, exciting, and fun! For this year, our main themes are “causing trouble” and “being a rebel.” We will look at ideas and individuals who have “shaken up” the (supposedly) established truths of our commonsense world, making us feel that we (like Alice!) are going “through the looking-glass” or “down the rabbit hole.” Our topics of study will include influential moments in the cultural history of “chaos,” the radical rethinking of the human mind known as psychoanalysis, the artistic unleashing of the irrational and the unconscious in surrealism, the “deconstruction” of philosophical and cultural certainties in poststructuralism, the “through-the-looking-glass” world of Lewis Carroll’s Alice books, and the nature of scientific revolutions and revolutionary science.

Students will practice the critical thinking, reading, and writing skills necessary to:

  • Improve their high-school grades
  • Produce outstanding high-school essays
  • Engage in advanced intellectual discussion and debate
  • Become familiar with the major disciplinary differences and expectations of university subject areas
  • Think across paradigms as well as approach intellectual questions in an interdisciplinary manner

Senior 3 focuses on the four key components of all our English Language Arts courses:

  • Building sophisticated vocabularies
  • Improving grammar skills
  • Improving reading comprehension and critical/analytical skills
  • Improving critical/analytical writing skills

 

Course Structure:

The Senior 3 year is separated into sections or disciplinary blocks:

In sum, this class is designed to improve students’ high-school performance on essays, examinations, research assignments, and presentations across all courses in the language arts, humanities, and social sciences spectrum. Furthermore, Senior 3 begins their preparation to excel in a university environment across an even wider variety of disciplines.

  • Psychology: Psychoanalysis (and Its Influence)
  • Art History: Surrealism (and Its Influence)
  • Philosophy: Poststructuralism
  • Literature: Lewis Carroll: The Alice Books [Don’t be fooled. This is difficult stuff, people!]
  • History of Science: Scientific Revolutions

 

Course Evaluation:

Students will be evaluated on:

  • Vocabulary homework
  • Vocabulary quizzes
  • Weekly in-class grammar discussions
  • Weekly writing assignments
  • Novel study
  • Essay assignments
  • Mid-term and final vocabulary exams
  • Final exam

Report cards will be distributed at the end of the year.

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