English 7-8 Syllabus

English 7-8 Syllabus 2013-2014

Teacher: Mrs. Elder                                                       

Email: Bonnie.elder@guhsdaz.org                                                                         

Office Phone: 623.915.8105

Office Hours:  7:30-8:00am & 2:35-3:30pm                          

Followingis a syllabus of rigorous topics, texts, and assignments that we will coverthis year.  We may add other units as Isee them necessary—for example, I will add informational texts/additionalreadings/excerpts that pertain to the quarter themes.  Also, I may add lessons in grammar andwriting as I see what the class needs to learn.

Your Prentice Hall Literature: The British Tradition book will be needed for variousprojects and assignments throughout the year.  The rest will be Xeroxed textsand excerpts.


FirstQuarter Theme:  Undertaking Journeys (both literal and figurative)

PriorKnowledge Piece:

  • Grammar/Usage & Mechanics

Reflectionand Future:

  • Letter to self that includes personal, academic, and professional expectations
  • Goals sheet (must include career/post-graduation goals)

BaseWriting/s (*DAP requirement):

  • 4-5 paragraph expository essay topic: advice tofreshmen (personal & reflective)
  • 4-5 paragraph essay topic: heroism in modern-daysociety (personal & analytical)

Specificand Additional Readings:

  • Anglo Saxon Period:  Anglo Saxon poetry, heroic stories, heroicexcerpts, Beowulf
  • Medieval Period: Excerpts from Canterbury Tales

ResumeBuilding Text-Based Narrative & Functional Writing (*DAP requirement):

  • Text-Based Narrative Resume
  • Personal Resume

LiteraryAnalysis Unit (*DAP requirement):

  • Terms, elements, discussion/explanation, finding theme
  • Expository Essay (a literary analysis of Beowulf as well as other additional analyses on readings)
  • Essay format:  Intro, Body, and Conclusion Paragraphs

Continuousthroughout the entire quarter (and semester):

Vocabulary;study and organizational skills; specific grammar skills as needed; independentreading and additional readings; reciprocal reading; oral presentations andpresentation skills; connections to real-life situations, lifelong learning,and higher education

SecondQuarter Theme: Establishing Identity(relationships, character, personal advocacy...)

ResearchUnit/Argumentative Writing (*DAP requirement):

  • Information Gathering
  • MLA Format
  • Written Product
  • Visual and Oral Presentation
  • Elements of Evaluation
    • Note: Incorporate miscellaneous yet relevant, informational texts with the quarter theme


  • Argumentative articles
  • Excerpts from Emerson’s Self-Reliance and other identity-related texts

Novel: Frankenstein (specified chapters):

  • Analyses and tying in “establishing identity” theme with the characters in the novel
  • Argumentative/Analytical Writing Persuasive Piece (*DAP requirement)
  • Note: this novel may not be covered daily; it may be covered once a week and/or in excerpts

DecemberAssessment: Criterion Referenced Test (CRT)

  • CRT Assessment Dates:
  • December 9, 10, 11
  • December 9: multiple choice component
  • December 10-11: short answer component


Third Quarter Theme:  Facing Conflicts/Overcoming Challenges

ExtendedText/Shakespeare Unit:

  • Renaissance/Elizabethan Period
  • Macbeth, Hamlet

Specificand Additional Readings: 

  • Short Stories and/or extending readings
  • “Lamb to the Slaughter”
  • “Yellow Wallpaper”
  • “The Wife’s Story”


  • Macbeth
  • Short stories

Analytical/ArgumentativeWriting (Formal and Informal):

  • Macbeth
  • Short stories
  • PBA preparation

FourthQuarter Theme:  MeasuringProgress/Achieving Success

PBAPreparation (*district practice texts may change/vary):

  • Problem/Solution practice
  • Literary and Non-Literary analytical practice
  • “Song of Myself”
  • “Man Listening to Disc”
  • “Cuban Missile Crisis”/”Civil Rights”
  • “Struggle for Human Rights”

Research-BasedPBA (*DAP requirement): 

  • Measuring progress on the following categories:
    • Content, Organization, Style, Usage & Mechanics
    • Note: Dates of the 2014 English 7-8 PBA: April 21-May 2

ExtendedText & Text-Based Narrative:

  • Into Thin Air
  • “Lincoln: Self-Made Man”
  • “Fallacy of Success”

Expressive& Reflective Narrative (*DAP Requirement):

  • Memoir Product and Presentation

Continuousthroughout the entire quarter (and semester):

Vocabulary;study and organizational skills; specific grammar skills as needed; independentreading and additional readings; reciprocal reading; oral presentations andpresentation skills; connections to real-life situations, lifelong learning,and higher education

Grading Scale

Grade Based on %

 1st Semester

Grade Based on %

 2nd Semester

100-90     A

89-80       B

79-70       C

69-60       D

59-0         F


You get what you earn.

Work hard.

Research Unit:  45%

Outcomes/Writing:  20% 

Additional Readings:  15%

Class work, homework, and bell work:  20%

Text-Based Analytical/ Research Writing & PBA: 40% 

Research, College & Career readiness/awareness: 20%

Additional Readings:  20%

Class work, homework, and bell work: 20%

***Thissyllabus is subject to change due to time constraints or other unforeseenissues***


The Rules

  1. Please come to class on time.
  2. Please turn in your work on time. 
  3.  Please remain in your seat until the bell rings; all students must be seated before any student can leave.
  4. Please respect yourself and all others in the classroom.
  5. Please follow general school rules while you are in the classroom.
  6. Keep your hands, feet, and objects to yourself at all times.
  7. Please feel free to share your relevant thoughts and opinions openly, honestly, and respectfully.

The Consequences

  1. Teacher/Student Conference, Warning.
  2. Parent Contact.
  3. Detention.
  4. Administrative Detention/Referral

*** The teacher hasevery right to skip steps depending on the situation…

Late Work/Absentees/Make-UpOpportunities

Late work is notacceptedexcept in the cases of an excused absence (you have the same # of days to makeup work as the # of days you were absent). In exceptional cases, I maytake large projects for half credit.

*Note:More information can be found under ArticleI-7261

Bathroom Pass

Youwill NOT be able to use the bathroom pass the first 15 minutes and last 15minutes of the class period.  This is ageneral school rule that all classrooms, students and faculty must follow.  Do not expect to use the restroom daily.  Do not ask to use the restroom daily.  I understand that emergencies do arise; Iwill take those certain situations into consideration and send you to thenurse. 

  • YOU MUST log in and out on the bathroom/tardy paper which will be held by a clipboard in the back of the room.  This is a school-wide policy.
  • YOU MUST take the red or blue plastic hall pass with you and make sure to bring it back.  This is also a school-wide policy.

Beginning andEnd-of-the-hour Bell

Whenentering the classroom, please find your seat and sit quietly with materialsready.

Pleaseremain in your seat until the bell rings; all students MUST be seated beforeany student can leave.

Independent Reading

Finishingan assignment early, you are to take out a book (that you independently chose)…OR…there will be a series of Fridays where—as a class—we will be reading shortstories and/or novels as well as holding critical discussions and multiplerelevant assignments.

Google Docs

Severalassignments will be drafted in class and later Word-Processed in MLA format onGoogle Docs.  You must be present on theGoogle Docs presentation day to receive adequate training. Because severalcollege professors ask you to turn in online assignments, the senior Englishteachers are requiring senior students to practice this competency prior toentering post-secondary education.  ALL GOOGLEDOCS “ASSIGNED DUE DATES” ARE TO BE SHARED/SUBMITTED TO YOUR SENIOR ENGLISHTEACHER BY 11:59pm.  (Note:  Not every assignment will be required to beshared/submitted).

Due Dates/Deadlines

Asa senior, you must be familiar with the importance of deadlines.  As your senior English teacher, I will nottolerate late work.  When an assignmentis given, you are to follow through and turn in your work by the deadline.  Due dates and deadlines are everywhere in thereal world, so it is my duty to hold you accountable.  If you have any comments or concerns aboutthe significance of deadlines, please see me. Just remember, YOU ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR TURNING IN YOUR WORK ON TIME! 

MLA Format

Inthe post-secondary world, professors require that you specifically arrange yourpaper/s in what is called: MLA Format. Another format is known as APA; however, several professors start youoff in MLA. Therefore, in this class, you are expected to organize EACH andEVERY assignment in MLA Format (hand-written and/or typed).  I will provide the specifics; however, if youwould like additional information on MLA Format, please visit the followingwebsite: http://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/747/01/

Materials Needed

  • Notebook paper
  • 1 Spiral notebook
  • 1 Pocket folder
  • 1, 1” Binder (optional:  I allow this according to student preference)
  • Writing Utensils (standard blue and/or black ink pen only—USING PENCILS IS PROHIBITED)

Office Hours

Myhours are before and after school unless an appointment is made.  Please take into consideration my otherinvolvements on campus (i.e. coaching, sponsoring…etc.). 

TeacherResponsibilities (To Name a Few)

  • Create a safe learning environment
  • Consistency with due processes
  • Holding all students accountable and responsible for their actions
  • Contacting parents/guardians on positive or negative manners
  • Create challenging yet relevant assignments
  • Preparing you for the next step: higher education and the real world
  • Making all students realize that I never GIVE you your grade/s; you EARN your grade/s

Iam looking forward to a fun, exciting, and challenging year.  I truly believe the classroom that we createwill be a safe and an enjoyable environment. Thank you!  Best of luck to youthis year! 

Remember:  Work hard, work ahead.



MoonValley High School’s UNI 101 College Club/Organization would like to extend afew words:

  • Senior: This is an important time in your life when you have to make several decisions about your future.  You are not alone in this process.  UNI 101 can and will help you!
  • Please see (email or call) Mrs. Dobberphul at any time for significant information on the steps you must take in order to be legitimately accepted into your ideal higher education institution.
  • This specific organization conducts informal, monthly meetings pertaining to the higher education checklist that was created specifically for juniors and seniors.
  • Also, do not hesitate to spend some time in MVHS’s Career Center; UNI 101 and the career center (as well as the counselors) work closely together with the college preparation process.

MoonValley’s Vision:

Preparingeach student for higher education

byensuring all students reach their full potential in every class.


Youmust return this “bottom half” portion with signatures agreeing that you haveread and reviewed the syllabus, rules, policies and procedures.

Parents/guardians:  Please make sure to update your email addressesas well as phone numbers on the parent portal of Infinite Campus.  I am extremely effective at creating as wellas replying to emails in a prompt manner.  Thank you! 

I(Student) ______________________________ have read and understand the syllabus,rules, policies, and procedures that are expected of me for the duration ofthis school year.  Furthermore, I amfully aware of the consequences of my actions. 

________________________________                           ___________________________________

StudentSignature and Date                                        Parent/GuardianSignature and Date