English – Language and Literature
The ISF Academy English teachers help each student develop a lifelong appreciation of reading, writing and effective communication, honing their skills as “creators of language.” Students are exposed to a wide range of literature and respond to these works in formal writing. As they are beginning to discover their own sense of voice, their writing allows for individual exploration and interpretation. Learning to respond to literature begins with a firm understanding of the text, be it a poem, short story, play or novel, and moves on to a recognition of the author/writer dynamic. Through continuous reading and writing, students learn to read as writers, and to write as readers.
The curriculum focuses on revising and strengthening those skills needed for a smooth and successful entrance into the IB diploma programme.
Vocabulary, grammar, and critical analysis are introduced and evaluated through an integral approach, with expository and creative writing serving as the basis for learning word lists and grammar rules.
Writing activities derive from in-class discussions of a number of carefully selected literary texts representing multiple genres and voices. Students will study and read stories, myths, plays, non-fiction pieces and other styles of writing. Writing assignments will involve intelligent, intuitive, and creative response to the works studied. Students at this level will also begin to learn essay form and style and will create and maintain writing portfolios that will showcase final drafts and document creative development.
In addition, students are required to read and complete book reports every 6 to 8 weeks on books of their choice, subject to teacher approval. Their book reports are expected to go far beyond plot summary; they shall showcase the “vocabulary of literature” pieced together throughout the term and in oral presentations.
Finally, students complete a six-week autobiographical project that allows experimentation with various writing techniques. This project results in the production of a “mini extended essay” of 1200 words, which teaches the skills necessary for writing a lengthy research paper.