Our English Language Arts curriculum is designed to empower our students to become critical independent readers, skillful writers, and effective communicators that will enable them to develop into well-informed, active participants in our democratic society. Click a grade level to learn more about the curriculum.
The elementary English Language Arts program in Wissahickon is an intensive exploration of oral, visual, and technological communication. Students follow the language and literacy framework, which provides a structure to help students construct meaning in their lives through reading and writing.
- Foundational Skills: Students gain a working knowledge of concepts of print, alphabetic principle, and other basic conventions
- Reading Informational Text: Students read, understand, and respond to informational text—with an emphasis on comprehension, vocabulary acquisition, and making connections among ideas and between texts with a focus on textual evidence
- Reading Literature: Students read and respond to works of literature—with emphasis on comprehension, vocabulary acquisition, and making connections among ideas and between texts with focus on textual evidence
- Writing: Students write for different purposes and audiences. Students write clear and focused text to convey a well-defined perspective and appropriate content. Students are expected to write in these genre: informative, narrative, and opinion. They are also expected to respond to literature in writing and demonstrate their understanding of the text.
- Speaking and Listening: Students present appropriately in formal speaking situations, listen critically, and respond intelligently as individuals or in group discussions.
Wissahickon uses Wonders, by McGraw-Hill, as the core English-Language Arts program. Using a rich range of diverse print and digital media, Wonders provides the instructional support and materials to teach the rigor, intent, and depth of the Pennsylvania Core Standards.
View more details about the elementary curriculum by grade below:
- Sixth Grade: Read a balance of informational texts and works of literature; Develop comprehension, vocabulary acquisition, and connecting authors purpose through text-based evidence; Narrative, informative, and argumentative writing for various perspectives; Conduct research; Speak and present formally and listen critically in group discussions.
- Seventh Grade: Read both fiction and non-fiction novels, excerpts, and short stories with exposure to a variety of literary styles and writers; Analyze elements of text through literature circles and reading workshop; Study of grammar, including parts of speech; Vocabulary acquisition through Greek and Latin root words, prefixes, and suffixes; Conduct research and engage in formal presentations; Narrative, argumentative, and informational writing.
- Eighth Grade: Use multiple works of literature, both fiction and non-fiction, to study thematic units and analyze of literary elements; Engage in independent reading, literature circles and reading workshop; Study grammatical phrases and diagram sentence structure; Focus on text analysis, narrative, expository, and research-based essays.
The Academic and Honors English curriculum utilizes an integrated approach to language built on a collection of non-fiction and fiction. The reading selections provide a mixture of genres with an array of cultural perspectives. Teachers use core texts to model strategies that serve as the “heart” of reading and writing workshops. Students will be provided opportunities to strengthen their understanding, analysis, and evaluation of texts while developing and honing their own writing craft. Over the course of four years, students will learn to read like writers and to write like readers.
Students in all grades may also choose to enroll in a variety of elective ELA classes including:
- Actor’s Workshop
- Art, Literature, and Ideas
- British Writers/American Humanities
- Creative Writing
- Journalism Today
- Public Speaking
- S.A.T. Verbal Preparation