Passion and accountability in writing, reading, and critical thinking lead to success.
The English curriculum at ARGS begins with a focus on research and writing. In the Introduction to Literature, Composition, and Research course, 9th graders learn the ins and outs of applied research particularly in relation to Literature and Composition. In addition to learning the process of composition through response journals and writing non-research based essays, students will learn to choose viable topics, follow the steps of successful research, and determine the nature of plagiarism and how to avoid it in its various forms. In addition, they will understand the cross-curricular connotations of applied research as they engage in a co-curricular Mythology project with the History Department.
Focus Area and Department Chairs host monthly seminars to educate freshmen about the ways in which research may be applied in various disciplines. In addition to helping students learn how to write more effectively in myriad styles (narrative, persuasive, comparison), the focus on crosscurricular research will encourage students to hone their research skills, to prepare more effectively for future course work, and to avoid plagiarizing. In addition to laying the groundwork for our research-based, interdisciplinary, four year curriculum, this course also satisfies the Virginia Department of Education Standards of Learning requirements for English 9.
When they turn sixteen, students at ARGS have the option to take College Credit English Courses. These courses meet the demands for John Tyler Community College and the credits are accepted across the nation. Many of our students enroll in college as Sophomores. More importantly, they leave the school prepared for the college realm and/or for other real-world environments.
The Department celebrates the Italian Renaissance and the Harlem Renaissance in school-wide Festivals.
The majority of our English faculty hold or are seeking advanced degrees and endorsements in gifted education.
The ARGS English Department strives to:
- Provide a firm grounding in the basic genres and movements within U.S., British, and World Literature, so that upon graduation, students are well-read and well versed in critical approaches to literature and composition.
- Foster an advanced proficiency in reading and in analyzing literary texts through exposure to an ever-changing literary canon.
- Provide students with an understanding of the necessity of a supportive, cohesive literary community and to provide what is often the first such community for young writers and readers.
- Support success on standardized tests by teaching analytical thinking, excellence in written communication, and test-taking strategies.
- Inspire an informed passion for literature and for composition in order to produce life-long readers, writers, and critical thinkers.
- Instill an understanding that the most skilled writers are also the most critical and intuitive readers, and to provide ample opportunities for the students to develop and to demonstrate these skills.
- Support all levels of student learning by providing them with the skills needed to complete multifaceted individual and/or group assignments from inception to completion.
- Prepare students to communicate effectively through written, verbal, and non-verbal means in a collegiate and/or other real-world environment.
- Promote and model a working knowledge of current technologies for research and presentation purposes.
- Utilize the inherently interdisciplinary nature of the school through writing and thinking across the curriculum.
LITERARY ARTS & ENGLISH FACULTY
Introduction to Literature, Composition & Research
English 12 CC, Print and On-line Pub. (Lit. Mag.), Senior Project, Poetry II & III, Thematic Studies I, II & III
English 11, Print and On-line Pub. I, II, III, IV (Lit. Mag.), Print and On-line Pub. I, II, III, IV (Yearbook), Poetry I, Creative Writing (Majors)
English 11 CC, Non-Fiction I & II, Creative Writing, Fiction I, II & III