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ACS Literature Philosophy:  We believe the study of literature is valuable because through it we can understand and evaluate in light of scripture and a biblical worldview the identities, histories, and values of humanity.  The literature curriculum at Aurora Christian School reflects this philosophy.  Therefore, ACS students are required to read a variety of classic literature – both Christian and secular – which enables us to discuss societal values and movements from a Christ-centered perspective.  In doing so, we seek to prepare students to engage potentially controversial ideas equipped with a biblical mindset.

World Literature & Speech

This course is an integration of speech/oral communication and world literature.  Students will learn an overview of different cultures and short stories throughout history.  Students will also learn the basic techniques and concepts of public speaking and put them to use through several different presentations.  The research process is incorporated through one of the major speeches, as well as a 4-6 page research paper.  Grammar and vocabulary is a significant portion of the curriculum.  Open to grade 9.


British Literature & Composition

In this course, students will read epic and lyric poetry, plays, essays, and short stories.  Thirty-six writing/composition lessons are incorporated throughout the year to enhance the students’ writing skills.  This knowledge is applied to journals, homework activities and a presentation/research paper that is 6-8 pages in length.  Coverage of grammar and vocabulary is a significant portion of the first semester curriculum.  Open to grade 10.  Prerequisite: World Literature & Speech.


Honors British Literature & Composition

Honors English 10 includes the same curriculum as English 10; however, the material is covered at a greater depth, and students will complete extra projects.  Open to grade 10.  Prerequisite: Students must receive a cumulative grade of 92% or greater in World Literature & Speech and 9th grade English teacher approval.


American Literature & Composition

English 11 is designed to teach advanced composition skills and provide the student with a broad understanding/overview of American literature from earliest Native American oral tales through modern short stories and poetry.  Students will write informally in a journal, write formal essays, and develop creative expressions.  They will read from a list of classic novels and make oral presentations.  Grammar and vocabulary will comprise a significant portion of students’ work, as well.  Emphasis on ACT/SAT writing, reading, and grammar is included as students prepare for those college entrance exams.  Open to grade 11.  Prerequisite: British Literature  & Composition.


Perspectives & Composition

This course is designed to prepare students for college by writing formal essays and at least one research work, and by reading and analyzing multiple forms/styles/works of literature.  Students will also keep a journal and write informal essays.  Grammar and vocabulary building will be stressed throughout the course.  One main objective will be to provide students with the skills necessary to develop a Christian response to literature they encounter in college.  Open to grade 12.  Prerequisite: American Literature & Composition.


AP English Language & Composition

AP English Language & Composition prepares students to successfully take the College Board’s Advanced Placement Language and Composition Exam, providing an opportunity to earn college credit upon passing the exam.  The purpose of this course is to “enable students to read complex texts with understanding and to write prose of sufficient richness and complexity to communicate effectively with mature readers.” (AP English Language and Composition Workshop Handbook 2011­-2012) It is designed to teach the skills needed to succeed in a college-level writing course – writing critically on multiple works of literature, proving students’ ability to understand, explain, and evaluate. This course also includes a strong debate unit to develop the student’s ability to clearly reason, define and articulate his/her knowledge and beliefs.  Open to grade 11.  Prerequisites:  Cumulative grade of 92% or greater in British Literature & Composition or Honors British Literature & Composition, approved writing sample, and 10th grade English teacher approval.

AP English Literature & Composition

AP English Literature & Composition prepares students to successfully take the College Board’s Advanced Placement Literature and Composition Exam, providing an opportunity to earn college credit upon passing the exam.  An AP English Literature and Composition course engages students in the careful reading and critical analysis of imaginative literature. Through the close examination of selected texts, students will deepen their understanding of the ways writers use language to provide both meaning and pleasure for their readers. As they read, students will consider a work’s structure, style and themes, as well as such smaller-scale elements as the use of figurative language, imagery, symbolism, and tone.  Prerequisites:  Cumulative grade of 92% or greater in AP Language & Composition, or Cumulative grade of 92% or greater, approved writing sample in American Literature & Composition, and 11th grade English teacher approval.


Creative Writing

Creative Writing is a workshop-oriented course in which students will learn the process and techniques of creative writing and, through practice, develop those skills.  Students will experiment with various types of writing, including the writing of fiction and poetry and plays. Class readings will expose students to various writing styles and provide examples of the successes and strategies of other writers. Class time will include learning the writer's craft, discussing the assigned readings, and developing student writing.  Open to grades 11 and 12.