Mills High School

English

 

The Mills English Program is a sequence of year-long courses that allows each student to develop and progress at an appropriate rate toward the goals of the State and District English Standards. Eight semesters of English are required for a diploma. Four levels of English courses are offered at Mills: Advanced Placement for 12th grade, Honors for 11th grade, Advanced Standing for 9th and 10th grades, and College Preparatory for 9th through 12th grades.

 

 


SUMMER READING ASSIGNMENTS

 

College Prep Courses 

 

Summer Reading English II CP

Summer Reading English III CP

Summer Reading English IV CP

 

AS & AP Courses 

Summer Reading English II AS

Summer Reading AP English Language (Grade 11)

Summer Reading AP English Literature (Grade 12)


Recommendations for Class Selection 

 

CP

AS/AP/H

• May read for pleasure

• Reads at grade level

• Moderate pace of reading

• Two or more required core and/or extended readings per semester

• May require extended reading in addition to class reading

• Minimum of two or more essay per semester (in-class and homework) per district policy

• Control of grammar and usage

• One half hour average nightly homework

• Solid study skills

• Enjoys reading outside of class.

Reads for pleasure especially over the summer

• Should read above grade level

• Accelerated pace of reading

• Five or more required core and/or extended readings per semester

• Required extended reading in addition to required class reading

• Minimum of five or more essays per semester (in-class and homework)

• Excellent control of grammar and usage

• One hour or more average nightly homework

• Strong organizational and time management skills

 

Students who enroll in AS/AP classes are committed to the class for the entire school year. Summer reading is required. Failure to complete summer reading will affect a student’s semester grade. 

 


English I

Grade Level: 9

This two semester course of study is designed to prepare students to succeed at the college levels. Study and practice writing grammatically correct sentences and unified, coherent, well-developed paragraphs. They will also be introduced to the format of the multi-paragraph analytical essay. Students will study the elements of fiction, various literary devices, and characteristics of different genres of literature. In this course, students will learn to take effective Cornell Notes, to use context clues to determine meanings of words, and to employ other study and organizational skills. The literary focus is on genres, and includes a short story unit, a mythology unit and a play.

 

English I AS  

Grade Level: 9

This course of study is designed to prepare students for the demands of the Advanced Placement Examination and highly competitive colleges and universities. To be successful in the AP track, a student must read and comprehend complex literature, must be self-directed and motivated and must be eager to work at an accelerated pace. All classes will be open to all students who understand the course expectations and make an informed decision. Students enrolled in this sequence of courses are expected to stay for the duration of the course and seniors are strongly encouraged to take the AP exam. To continue on the following year, a student should maintain a grade of C or better at the end of each semester.

 

English II

Grade Level: 10

This two semester course of study is designed to prepare students to succeed at the college levels. Students continue to practice and add to the skills introduced in the previous year. Students write critical literary essays based on their reading of books. They will study a consumer unit, which includes reading non-fiction documents, researching advertising and propaganda, and writing a business letter and a persuasive essay.

 

English II AS

Grade Level: 10

This course of study is designed to prepare students for the demands of the Advanced Placement Examination and highly competitive colleges and universities. To be successful in the AP track, a student must read and comprehend complex literature, must be self-directed and motivated and must be eager to work at an accelerated pace. Students enrolled in this sequence of courses are expected to stay for the duration of the course and seniors are strongly encouraged to take the AP exam. To continue on the following year, a student should maintain a grade of C or better at the end of each semester.

 

English III

Grade Level:  11

This first of a two semester course of study is designed to prepare students to succeed at the college levels. Students refine the writing, literature, and other language skills introduced in previous semesters. They learn to research a controversial issue topic using primary and secondary sources, and to report their findings in the form of a formal debate, and to write the reflective essay. They continue to review for the SATs with weekly vocabulary lists of Greek and Latin root words, SAT prep words, and study of common language usage errors seen on the SAT II test. They will study the American heritage in literature and focus on such themes as American Individualism and the American Dream.

                         

English Language AP

Grade Level: 11

This two semester course focuses on the nature of the American experience in literature. English AP prepares students for the Advanced Placement examination and advanced studies in English. Students must complete a summer reading requirement consisting of three or four novels or plays to be finished by the opening week of the fall semester. In the fall students study such topics as American Individualism, Realism, Romanticism, Gothicism, and Modernism, and a variety of American Transcendentalist essays. They will also study poetry and learn to write the reflective and controversial issue essay. During this time students will write a large number of critical and personal essays, working on techniques of analysis and synthesis as well as perfecting their own personal writing style. In the second semester, students will focus on the American experience of the twentieth century and will read such works as The Great Gatsby, Invisible Man, and As I Lay Dying, as well as controversial issue essay and debate.

 

English IV

Grade Level: 12

This first semester course of study is designed to prepare students to succeed at the college levels. Students refine the writing, note taking, reading, and study skills. They learn to write college-level essays in a variety of rhetorical patterns, as well as to prepare an autobiography and resume suitable for college applications or a job. Throughout the year the focus is philosophical; students analyze an author’s implicit and explicit philosophical assumptions and beliefs about a subject. This second semester course of study is designed to prepare students to succeed at the college levels. Students refine the writing, note taking, reading, study skills and read Othello, Siddhartha, and nonfiction articles. The latter part of the semester focuses on film analysis and building visual literacy. The semester culminates in a Career Presentation Project where, utilizing research, interview, writing, computer, and public speaking skills, students explore possible future occupations.

 

English Literature AP

Grade Level: 12

This two semester course of study is designed to prepare students for the demands of the Advanced Placement Examination and highly competitive colleges and universities. Students must complete a summer reading requirement to be completed by the opening week of the fall semester. Students read a variety of prose and poetry selections, study complex works of literature, and learn a variety of techniques for approaching all types of literary works. They further develop their writing as well as perfect their own critical essays. Students learn to analyze the stylistic characteristics of prose and to define the relationship between a writers’ style and his meaning. They also read works of literary criticism and theory. To continue on the following year, a student should maintain a grade of C or better at the end of each semester.

 

Strategic English Support 1

Grade Level: 9

Students are placed into this support course based on district guidelines. Prerequisite:  CAASPP English/Language Arts and  SRI performance scores at below basic or lower, and teacher recommendation.

 

Strategic English Support 2

Grade Level: 10

This course is designed to assist those students who have shown difficulty in previous English classes and/or have not passed grade level standards. Students will receive elective credit for the course.

Prerequisite:  CAASPP English/Language Arts and SRI performance scores at below basic or lower, and teacher recommendation.

ENGLISH LANGUAGE DEVELOPMENT (ELD) DEPARTMENT

 

English Language Development (ELD) II Hour 1 & Hour 2   

Grade Level: 9-12

This double-period course for intermediate ELs is designed as a bridge from EL to mainstream English. The curriculum for ELD II is aligned with the English 1.  Heavy emphasis is given to literature of various genres, writing, grammar, and vocabulary acquisition. Students in this course also take ELD Reading II and other sheltered classes in the Mathematics, Science, and Social Sciences departments. To exit ELD II and go into mainstream English, students must read at the 8th grade level and be able to write a coherent essay. This class may be repeated for credit towards graduation; however English credits for UC/CSU requirements are only counted once.

 

English Language Reading Development

Grade Level: 9-12   

The reading program provides students with reading strategies and developmental skills to help improve comprehension and understanding.  The reading class focuses on nonfiction reading comprehension.  (One period class taken concurrently with ELD II, 10 elective credits)

 

Transitional English  

Grade Level: 9-12

After transitioning into mainstream English program, EL students are enrolled into a transitional English class that is designed to provide them with academic support for their mainstream classes.  Students who are mainstreamed from the 8th grade level into mainstream 9th grade English 1 classes are also enrolled in transitional class. 

(One period class, 10 elective credits)