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English Language Arts

Four Language Arts credits are required in grades 9-12. However, students are encouraged to take as many Language Arts elective courses as their schedules allow.

Courses Shown Below

 Click title to see course description and prerequisites 

Required Courses

Requirement Course Options
 9th Grade English  (2 classes)   English 9 A&B  
 10 Grade English (2 classes)
 English 10 A&B  

 11 Grade English (2 classes)

English 11 A&B 


AP English Language & Composition A&B (11-12)

  Communication (1 class minimum)   additional courses may be taken as electives  

CIS Advance Public

Speaking (11-12) OR Speech (11-12) OR Argumentation (11-12)
OR Communication Theory & Practice (11-12)

English Elective Requirement (1 class)
In addition to the requirements above,
1 additional class is required for graduation (.5 credit).

Elective Courses

Technical Writing (9-12)

Creative Writing (9-12)

CIS University Writing (12)

Literature of the Imagination (11-12)

World Literature (11-12)

Popular Literature in Spanish (11-12)

CIS Intro to Literature (12)

Technical Theater (9-12)

Theater Directing & Performance (9-12)

Introduction to Media (9-12)

Mass Communication (Digital Media Production) (9-12)

AP Seminar (11-12)

Yearbook (11-12)   

Elective courses may also be taken from the required categories listed on the left.

English 9A/B Offered Annually Course: 4991/4992 Grade: 9 Students will engage in a variety of reading and writing activities, many of their own choice, as well as selected literature and writing assignments. Students will develop the following skills: analysis and interpretation of novels, drama, short stories, nonfiction and poetry, research methods, formal speaking, grammar and vocabulary in the context of writing.

English 10A/B  Offered Annually Course: 4004/4005 Grade: 10
Students will read and analyze literature in small groups, projects, and writing. Students learn to identify literary themes and will examine text through literary lenses. Emphasis is given to writing and responding to literature in order to develop strong literacy skills. A variety of genres is covered, such as poetry, novels, dramas, and short stories. Students will analyze and respond to literature in several ways, including thematically examining the “American Dream”.

English 11A/B Offered Annually Course: 4006/4007 Grade: 11
Students will read a diverse selection of texts, including poetry, short stories, drama, novels, and non-fiction books. Additionally, students will write a variety of texts, including a personal narrative, expository essay, critical analysis, and a research-based argumentative paper. Throughout the course, students will engage in grammar and vocabulary study designed to increase their ability to navigate both technical and college-level texts. Upon completion, students will be prepared for choosing 12th grade elective courses aligned with their college and career interests.

AP English Language and Composition A/B Course: 4020/4021 Grade: 11-12
Recommended:  An “A” average in 10th grade English and/or teacher recommendation.
This first year college level course offers students an intensive study in both literature and composition. This course will teach students how to identify, analyze and utilize the power of rhetoric. The genre of the nonfiction essay will be explored extensively as support to the themes in the literature. Students will demonstrate their achievement of college-level work by taking the AP English Language and Composition exam in the spring. This course meets the 11th grade Language Arts requirement or 2 elective credits within senior year. Students must register for both AP English Language and Composition A and B.

Communication Theory & Practice Course: 4100 Grade: 11-12 
Communication Theory and Practice prepares students to demonstrate effective communication skills in personal, community and/or work settings. Presentation is the core of class activity as students analyze communication situations, solve problems, participate in dialogue and reflect on their communication practices and observations. Emphasis is on effective speaking and listening in a variety of communication situations. This course meets the Language Arts Communication requirement.

Speech Course: 4105 Grade: 11-12
Speech requires students to research, construct, analyze and deliver speeches for a variety of purposes and audiences. Skills will be developed in critical analysis of informational and persuasive sources. Presentations may include any of the following: persuasive, informative, impromptu and rhetorical analysis. Students will work on improving communication skills in partner and small group settings. This course meets the Language Arts Communication requirement.

CIS Advanced Public Speaking Course: 4115 Grade: 11-12

Prerequisite: Juniors and Seniors must be in the top 50% of their class and carry a “B” average, or permission of instructor.
This course continues the study of public speaking for speech enthusiasts and college-bound students. Students will research issues and evaluate proposed positions or solutions using a variety of public speaking methods to communicate their findings. Specific speeches include persuasive forms of public speaking. In addition to completing in-depth issues analysis, students can expect to improve their skills influencing others, improve rational thinking, improve study habits, and improve their abilities overall to effectively communicate and speak in public. This course meets the Language Arts Communication requirement. Successful completion of this course may enable students to earn 3 semester credits from the University of Minnesota. (Communications 1101:Introduction to Public Speaking)

Argumentation Course: 4116 Grade: 11-12
Students are required to take Speech, Communication Theory and Practice, or Argumentation. This course offers college-bound students an opportunity to develop their understanding of researching and analyzing issues. Students conduct research, develop arguments and defend those arguments in both a competitive and academic setting. Students will also discuss the history of argumentation, the importance of argument in a democratic society and the need for critical analysis of information. Successful completion of this course requires independent work outside of class, the ability to access electronic information, and a comfort speaking in front of peers. This course meets the Language Arts Communication requirement.

Technical Writing Course: 4205 Grade: 9-12
Students write original, practical works for a variety of professional purposes, situations, and audiences. Students learn clear and concise writing techniques and acquire written communication skills to better prepare them for the workplace. Assignments include writing memos, business letters, cover letters, technical instructions, brochures, reports and business proposals. Emphasis is placed on correct usage, grammar, formatting, and development; students can expect to revise some assignments until correctness is attained. Students are expected to actively participate in a peer review process. Technical Writing benefits all students who are serious about improving their writing skills.  This course meets the Language Arts elective requirement.

Creative Writing Course: 4210 Grade: 9-12
Creative Writing helps students discover the process of art-making with words. It accomplishes this by developing an awareness of the students’ five senses, expanding their imaginations, and alerting them to the relationships between things and people.  Exercises focus on writing scripts, short fiction, and poetry. Examples of various authors’ works will provide a basis for writing.  This course meets the Language Arts elective requirement.

CIS University Writing Course: 4221 Grade: 12 

Prerequisite: Top 20% of the senior class or teacher's permission
This course provides writing practice which, combined with reading and discussion, is designed to form new strategies for inventing, focusing, drafting, organizing, revising, and editing. While writing four major papers, students will individually and collaboratively analyze, critique, and evaluate writing as college readers and writers.  Successful completion of this course may enable students to earn 4 semester credits from the University of Minnesota. (Writ 1301)

Literature of the Imagination Course: 4301 Grade: 11-12
This course centers on the imagination. It examines hypotheses about our beginnings, the reasons for our behavior, our ideals of heroism, our need to make a better world, and our curiosity about our future life. Throughout the term, literature of various cultures will be studied in the format of myths, legends, fantasy, folklore, horror stories, and science fiction. Students will also be reading and studying three novels: Frankenstein by Mary Shelley, Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury, and a choice novel. 

World Literature Course: 4306 Grade: 11-12
World Literature provides college-bound students with an excellent background in acclaimed literature. Studies include major writings that have influenced American culture. A variety of genres are read with emphasis on different perspectives. This course provides challenging reading material and is recommended for students who enjoy discussing a variety of concepts. 

Popular Literature - In Spanish Course: 4317 Grade: 11-12
Prerequisite recommendation: Enrolled in Spanish V or Completion of Spanish V

Spanish Immersion Link Image

This course is designed for students with a strong Spanish language background. The reading, writing, and discussion will be in Spanish. Literature, with its potential to entertain and challenge, provides a perfect setting to explore new worlds and new ideas. This is the purpose of Popular Literature. It is designed to continue the study of literary terms and structure begun in English 10 and relate them to current themes and topics in literature and society today. Students will examine, discuss, and write about some of the best popular literary selections including modern novels, short stories, and essays. Additionally students will read and study five novels. This course meets the Language Arts Elective Requirement.

CIS Introduction To Literature Course: 4320 Grade: 12

Prerequisite: Top 30% of the senior class
In this rigorous and exciting class, students read a wide variety of texts set in a broad range of historical and cultural contexts. College level discussions of literary form and interpretation focus on construction of understanding and evaluation. Extensive critical theory will be examined and utilized. Assessment is based on participation in literary groups, reader notebook entries and formal papers. This course meets the Language Arts Literature requirement. Successful completion of this course may enable students to earn 4 college credits from the University of Minnesota. (Eng L 1001W)

Technical Theater Course: 4405 Grade: 9-12 
Technical Theater explores the technical aspects of theater, including stage lighting, sound, set design, costume design, properties, publicity, and studying plays. Students will also read and analyze several plays and articles, and research historical connections in theater. No previous theater experience is required; however, a strong interest in technical theater is preferred.  This course meets the Language Arts elective requirement.

Theater Directing & Performance Course: 4406 Grade: 9-12
This course explores the performance elements of theater. Units include monologues, scene work, dramatic structure, and improvisational theater. Students learn how to be knowledgeable and critical audience members. They will also demonstrate their understanding of theater through play analysis, the creation and performance of in-class theatrical productions, scripting, and directing their peers in scenes.  This course meets the Language Arts elective requirement.

Introduction to Media Course: 4407 Grade: 9-12
Students will learn about the elements and structure of forms of media. Multiple approaches for the interpretation and analysis of television, newspapers, magazines, the internet and film will be explored. These will be examined for their historical, social, and cultural significance as well as basic production elements. Attention will also be paid to the ever-changing role of advertising in mass media.  This course meets the Language Arts elective requirement.

Mass Communication (Digital Media Production) Course: 4409 Grade: 9-12 
In this course, students will sharpen reading, writing and speaking skills while learning about several aspects of media production through journalism. Each student will be actively involved in maintaining a school news outlet called “Ranger Media”. Media to be produced include: video news stories, print news stories, blogs, and radio news shows/Podcasts. Specific skills to be practiced include filming, photojournalism, video editing, interviewing, news writing and editing, audio recording, and verbal delivery of the news. While working within the genre of journalism, students will also learn media production skills that are broadly applicable. 

AP Seminar A/B Course: 2415/2416 Grade: 11-12 

AP Seminar is a foundational course that engages students in cross curricular conversations that explore the complexities of academic and real-world topics and issues by analyzing divergent perspectives. Using an inquiry framework, students practice reading and analyzing articles, research studies, and foundational, literary, and philosophical texts; listening to and viewing speeches, broadcasts, and personal accounts; and experiencing artistic works and performances. Students learn to synthesize information from multiple sources, develop their own perspectives in written essays, and design and deliver oral and visual presentations, both individually and as part of a team. Ultimately, the course aims to equip students with the power to analyze and evaluate information with accuracy and precision in order to craft and communicate evidence-based arguments. The goal is to be prepared for the Advanced Placement Performance Tasks and Exam given in mid-May, which will enable those with passing scores to receive college credit for this course.

College Credit Opportunity: Students must register for and take the advanced placement exam. College credit may be awarded based on the AP score earned and the requirements of the student’s chosen college. 

Yearbook A/B Course: 4703/4704 Grade: 11-12 
Students will register for a full year of these two courses. Yearbook A is only offered during semester 1, and Yearbook B is only offered during semester 2. Students will be creating the annual “Forester” yearbook by researching, interviewing and writing. Creating layouts, sideboards, taking photographs, compiling information, and marketing are skills learned in the courses. Students who register for these courses need to have high academic skills, effective communication skills and be able to work both independently as well as cooperatively. All interested students are encouraged to register. However, the size of the staff is limited, so interviews may be held to determine who would best meet the criteria. This course does not satisfy the English Elective graduation requirement.

ALC Only: 

Creative Writing and Performance Course: 4230
This course guides students through the creation and analysis of various genres of storytelling and presentation. Students will work to make meaning of the ideas, values and experiences of others through a variety of mentor texts and performances. As a community of writers, students will explore their own imagination and style through several different writing and performance exercises for different audiences. Taking a multi-modal approach to storytelling and performance, students will fill digital backpacks with creative writing and design activities that show artistic voice.