Literature communicates ethics, traditions, values, and elicits empathy. Literature introduces students to cultures, history, psychology, and the shared struggles of the human experience. Reading, writing and oral skills are an integral component of learning and communication and are essential to success in all academic disciplines. Therefore, Upper School students are required to take English all four years. The courses in the English Department are designed to generate close reading of the texts, creative and unique written analysis, as well as thoughtful class discussion and insightful self-reflection.
Students will develop strong reading skills and foster an appreciation for a variety of perspectives. In each grade, students read works by diverse authors in a variety of genres (fiction, non-fiction, drama, and poetry). Texts are chosen for each course with the goal of extending beyond literary analysis and challenging our students to read closely, think critically, problem solve, and communicate effectively. Framing a literary work within its historical, cultural, and philosophical context will extend the students’ appreciation for the individual work’s intrinsic value.
The English Department is committed to helping students write thoughtful, well-developed written responses to literature. Writing skills are practiced in a variety of formal and informal essays. On an individual basis, students will receive specific instruction from their instructor or from another instructor in the English or History department to further the composition of an essay or paper. Students compose research papers based on various sources with the length and sophistication of the papers increasing from freshman to senior year.
We strive to foster an environment where students develop a lifelong appreciation for literature as they pursue their own voice and vision as readers, writers, and speakers. Our curriculum prepares students for academic success in college and ultimately provides students with the ability and desire to be inquisitive, lifelong learners.
The English Department strives to foster an environment where students develop a lifelong appreciation for literature as they pursue their own voice and vision as readers, writers, and speakers.