Middle School Language Arts III

Pre-Requisites: Recommended for 8th grade
Credits: 1
Estimated Completion Time: 2 segments/32-36 weeks


Maybe change would not be hard if we knew where it was all going. This course is not about telling fortunes, but it is about seeing how people and ideas have changed. It is also about discovering which ideas have lasting value for each student. Books, poems, and songs are filled with stories about people discovering the world around them and the world inside them. Authors share their reflections about how people respond to changes and challenges. In this course, students encounter the many faces of change. They are also challenged to define and describe their own place in a changing world. The purpose of this course is to give students the tools to understand and express who they are and where they want to go. By the end of the course, each student's portfolio of writings will provide a descriptive self-portrait of a young adult growing up.

Major Topics and Concepts

Segment 1
  • Staying on pace
  • Meeting classmates
  • Organizing notebook and preparing for class
  • Learning styles
  • Literacy history
  • Brainstorming
  • Creative writing
  • Reading comprehension
  • Self-portrait project
  • Vocabulary development
  • Free-writing
  • Reading skills (poetry, prose, nonfiction, songs)
  • Interviewing skills
  • Writing summaries and personal responses
  • Friendly letters
  • Media literacy
  • Quotation marks
  • End punctuation
  • Reading and analyzing a novel
  • Pre-reading strategies
  • Summary writing
  • Personal response to literature
  • Story elements (character, plot, setting, point of view, theme)
  • Time management
  • Book review
  • Essay structure
  • Writing process (brainstorming, drafting, revising, editing)
  • Narrative, expository and persuasive essays
  • Writing introductions
  • Writing the body of the essay (specific details)
  • Writing conclusions
  • Analyzing writing prompts
  • Timed writings
  • Scoring rubrics

Segment 2
  • Appreciating and responding to poetry
  • Understanding poetic devices (rhyme, stanza)
  • Understanding figurative language (metaphor, simile, imagery, personification, hyperbole, onomatopoeia)
  • Writing and collecting poetry
  • Vocabulary development
  • Real-world literacy
  • Self-assessment and interest inventory
  • Goal-setting (personal, school, extracurricular, career)
  • Career exploration
  • Fact/opinion
  • Cause/effect
  • Parody
  • Propaganda
  • Speech-writing techniques
  • Listening and speaking skills
  • Research skills
  • Bibliography

Grading Policy

To achieve success, students are expected to submit work in each course weekly. Students can learn at their own pace; however, "any pace" still means that students must make progress in the course every week. To measure learning, students complete self-checks, practice lessons, multiple choice questions, projects, discussion-based assessments, and discussions. Students are expected to maintain regular contact with teachers; the minimum requirement is monthly. When teachers, students, and parents work together, students are successful.

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