English

Wayland Academy’s English program is designed to give students a working knowledge of the tools of the language so they may speak, write, and think effectively. It aims to give them a background of reading that will lead them to look upon literature as a human experience, enable them to read with understanding and enjoyment, and to develop in them a standard of taste and criticism. It seeks to familiarize students with traditionally great literature and with recognized literary types.

English Course Descriptions


World Literature and Composition CP (English I)

This course is for ninth grade students only and provides study in all of the language arts. Composition includes considerable work on the paragraph and on the generating of ideas for writing. An intensive study of grammar is included. The literary aspect of the course emphasizes the development of reading skills, critical thinking, and vocabulary.

American Literature and Composition CP (English II)

This course is typically for tenth grade students who will become more thorough readers and writers, paying extensive attention to detail in their analyses of texts as well as their own composition (essays). This course will engage students in careful and critical reading and analysis of literature in the four main genres – poetry, novels, plays, and short stories – of the American tradition from Puritanism through modernism. William Shakespeare’s influence on all writing, regardless of genre or national origin, also appears in the curriculum. Honors scholarship involves a quicker pace, more writing assignments, and an essential focus on critical writing with a bit of time spent on rhetorical analysis in preparation for AP Language and Composition the student’s junior year. (Prerequisite: English I or ninth grade English equivalent)

British Literature and Composition CP (English III)

This course is typically for juniors and offers grounding in British literature and shows how this literature was instrumental in both creating the 19th century drive towards colonialism and imposing a mode of behavior within colonial sites. Then, as the multitude of colonies around the world gained their independence after World War II, writers within those prior colonial states began to reflect on how the books they grew up with in school manipulated their view of their culture and its place within the larger world— often in a negative way. Students write in a variety of modes – critical, creative, and personal – to reflect critical thinking. Prerequisite: English II or tenth grade English equivalent.

Modern and Contemporary Literature CP (English IV)

This course is for seniors only and focuses primarily on novels from the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. Through working with the material in class, students develop higher-order thinking skills, such as analysis, synthesis, and evaluation. Students drive class discussion and their own research for their senior thesis — a capstone writing project. Prerequisite: English III or eleventh grade English equivalent.

Creative Writing CP – Fall Semester

This class will introduce students to the process and techniques of creative writing. Students will experiment with various types of writing, including the writing of fiction and poetry. Class readings will expose students to various writing styles and provide examples of the successes and strategies of other writers. Class time will be spent discussing the writer's craft, the assigned readings, and student writing. There will also be opportunity to create new hybrid forms of expression. In the past we have experimented with photoems… poems that have an altered meaning by the introduction of a photograph, or poems that are created by choosing words from an already existing page of text and connecting them with arrows and lines so that the poem is also a kind of map. The class is also responsible for putting together Wayland’s literary magazine, Kaleidoscope.

Advanced Placement English Literature and Composition

This course provides the opportunity for students to make connections in literature and thinking across genre and across time. To this end we multitask multiple works at the same time. The organizing theme for the course is the role of the outsider within society, and how this ambiguous and often pigeonholed figure has been approached through fiction, poetry, and critical theory. The stress is on independent thinking, and gradually the students are weaned off proposed topics for essays. The pace is very fast in the first semester and then tapers off a bit in the second to give students the opportunity to work on their own independent projects (the research paper and the poet presentation), and to solidify their own particular concerns in literature. The course offers students a wide variety of tools that they may or may not (it’s up to them) find helpful in articulating their ideas. Student life experiences provide a very personal way for them to transgress boundaries. Students write numerous critical essays, among other writing projects.
Prerequisite: English department consent.

Advance Placement Language and Composition

This course is the equivalent of an introductory college composition course and prepares students for the skills-based multiple choice and essay exam in May. In preparation for that exam and college level scholarship, the course also fosters advanced reading and writing skills. Implementation of the College Board’s AP English course description requires focus on rhetoric: the art of constructing and presenting arguments in speech, writing, images, or hybrids of much that is visual, written, and spoken. These skills allow students to derive their own meaning of other texts and develop their own voice in student writing. The principal rhetorical objectives in student writing are analysis, close reading, argument, synthesis, and informed citizenship. Students write about subjects portrayed in the mostly non-fiction and a few fiction texts. Students must demonstrate an awareness of purpose and audience. Student confidence in their own research and writing capabilities in other academic disciplines emerges with experience in the memoirs, articles, speeches, letters, journal entries, photos, film and other written and visual texts. Student research and subsequent synthesis of many secondary sources grow in complexity as preparation for college. Prerequisite: English department consent.

Not offered this semester, but coming soon...

English II H


This course explores the reception and expression of literary forms in America, corresponding to the study of U.S. history during the sophomore year. We will read poetry, plays, and fiction and non-fiction prose written by Americans over the past couple centuries. Through reading and writing both literature and literary criticism, we will explore culture, language, politics, history, and anthropology.