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Sandi Stupica

Professor Merritt
Unit Texts Assessments Eng Goals # of Weeks
Unit 1: Harrison Bergeron Students will complete Political 7 weeks
Science by Ray Bradbury newspaper articles with Awareness
Fiction of fictional interviews of
yesterday, 1984 by George characters, a film Critical
predicts Orwell comparison, and Thinking
today descriptive observations
The Time Machine that reflect: Interest in
(the book and two 1. Their awareness as Social Values
movies from viewers within
different years) by their own social Novels
H.G. Wells contexts.
2. To see a text Media
beyond it’s surface
NCTE 2. Students read a wide 5. Students employ a wide 9. Students 11. Students
Standards Met: range of literature from range of strategies as they write develop an participate as
many periods in many and use different writing understanding of knowledgeable,
genres to build an process elements appropriately and respect for reflective,
understanding of the to communicate with different diversity in creative, and
many dimensions (e.g., audiences for a variety of language use, critical members
philosophical, ethical, purposes. patterns, and of a variety of
aesthetic) of human dialects across literacy
experience. cultures, ethnic communities.
groups, geographic
regions, and social
Unit 2: In His Father’s A political leader’s Clear, well 6 weeks
Influential Shadow: The myspace/facebook page reasoned
Choices and Transformations of and one persuasion essay arguments
People of the George W. Bush by that reflects:
Decade Stanley A. Renshon 1. How their actions, Organized
as well as
100 People Who prominent officials, Communication
Are Screwing Up affect society’s
America by immediate future. Political
Bernard Goldberg There are Awareness
consequences to
An Inconvenient their actions. Current Events
Truth (movie) by 2. Diverse voices:
Al Gore pros and cons. Novels

The Coldness of E- A quiz that reflects: Media

mail by Destiny 1. Their
Ward understanding of
the texts.
Sandi Stupica
Professor Merritt
NCTE 1. Students read a wide 3. Students apply a wide range 4. Students adjust 6. Students
Standards Met: range of print and non- of strategies to comprehend, their use of spoken, apply knowledge
print texts to build an interpret, evaluate, and written, and visual of language
understanding of texts, appreciate texts. They draw on language (e.g., structure,
of themselves, and of their prior experience, their conventions, style, language
the cultures of the interactions with other readers vocabulary) to conventions
United States and the and writers, their knowledge of communicate (e.g., spelling
world word meaning and of other effectively with a and punctuation),
texts, their word identification variety of media
strategies, and their audiences and for techniques,
understanding of textual different purposes. figurative
features language, and
genre to create,
critique, and
discuss print and
non-print texts.
Unit 3: Ask me no More A Wequest, and a group Textual 6 weeks
Construction Questions by presentation will reflect: Interpretation
of one’s own Marina Budho 1. Americans
interpretation stereotyped Cultural
of culture: a American Born perceptions of meanings and
Media Chinese by Gene people of Middle connotations
Literacy Unit Luen Yang Eastern and Asian
descent. Communication
Advertisements 2. Their own
construction and Graphic Novel
interpretation of
culture, rather than Current Events
defining it with
advertisements that Novel
decide what is
“desirable.” Media
NCTE 9. Students develop an 8. Students use a variety of 10. Students
Standards Met: understanding of and technological and information whose first
respect for diversity in resources (e.g., libraries, language is not
language use, patterns, databases, computer networks, English make use
and dialects across video) to gather and synthesize of their first
cultures, ethnic groups, information and to create and language to
geographic regions, and communicate knowledge. develop
social roles. competency in the
English language
arts and to develop
understanding of
content across the
Unit 4: The Color Purple A video biography and Textual 6 weeks
African by Alice Walker journal entries that Interpretation
American reflects:
Literature The Color of Water 1. an understanding Novels
within by James McBride of the changing
American (supplemental) role of African Media
Sandi Stupica
Professor Merritt
society: Americans in
What is Let America Be society. How Comparison of
Means to be America Again by influential leaders texts
American Langston Hughes have influenced
this role.
Shining Through 2. an appreciation of
(song) by Fredro differences.
Starr and Jill Scott 3. an insightful grasp
on metaphors
Sumthin’ Wicked presented in the
This Way Comes readings.
(song) by TLC
NCTE 7. Students conduct 12. Students use spoken,
Standards Met: research on issues and written, and visual language to
interests by generating accomplish their own purposes
ideas and questions, (e.g., for learning, enjoyment,
and by posing persuasion, and the exchange of
problems. They gather, information).
evaluate, and
synthesize data from a
variety of sources (e.g.,
print and non-print
texts, artifacts, people)
to communicate their
discoveries in ways that
suit their purpose and
Unit 5: In the Palm of Your Students will write Textual 5 weeks
Expression Hand (textbook) by poems/song lyrics and a Interpretation
through Steve Kowitt double-entry log that
Poetry reflects: Poetry
Sonnets 1-25 by 1. An understanding
William the meaning
Shakespeare conveyed by the
writers. Many
Poetry by John authors wrote to
Keats, Gordon rebel against the
Byron, and Maya uprising of the
Angelou aristocracy.
2. textual
Sonnets from the interpretation
Portugese by 3. the ability to
Elizabeth Barrett observe the
Browning controversy that
results from social
classes and power.
Sandi Stupica
Professor Merritt
NCTE 1. Students read a wide 9. Students develop an
Standards Met: range of print and non- understanding of and respect for
print texts to build an diversity in language use,
understanding of texts, patterns, and dialects across
of themselves, and of cultures, ethnic groups,
the cultures of the geographic regions, and social
United States and the roles.
Unit 6: The Short stories Students will write a paper The Writing 6 weeks
I-Search written from the based on research Process
Paper: Speak first person regarding a topic that is
Out! perspective will be important to them. As Research
read out loud to they interview, proofread,
prepare students for discuss, write journal Interviewing
their I-Search entries and present their
narratives. project, they will be Novels
Examples of first assessed on:
person narratives 1. content
are: 2. sources – three
primary sources are
To Kill a necessary
Mockingbird by 3. Sources
Harper Lee documented
Jane Eyre by 4. Journals are written
Charlotte Bronte weekly and they
show progress
A Portrait of the
Artist as a Young
Man by James
NCTE 9. Students develop an 1. Students read a wide range 3. Students apply a
Standards Met: understanding of and of print and non-print texts to wide range of
respect for diversity in build an understanding of texts, strategies to
language use, patterns, of themselves, and of the comprehend,
and dialects across cultures of the United States and interpret, evaluate,
cultures, ethnic groups, the world and appreciate
geographic regions, and texts. They draw
social roles. on their prior
experience, their
interactions with
other readers and
writers, their
knowledge of word
meaning and of
other texts, their
word identification
strategies, and their
understanding of
textual features.
Sandi Stupica
Professor Merritt

To Whom It May Concern:

It is pertinent for Cool High School to incorporate an English curriculum that allows

students to relate literature to their day-to-day lives. Even though the school population consists

of a variety of ethnic and cultural backgrounds, socio-economic backgrounds, ability levels, and

aspirations for the future, there is a role that literature plays in each of their lives. Messages,

morals, and themes delivered in texts focus on the realities of life. No matter the era written, it

can help students be inspired by our past or predict trends described for our future. From the

classics to recent literature, something will ignite students’ interest as they become engaged and

realize the significance of the texts.

The first unit “science fiction of yesterday, predicts today,” will build upon the idea that

students play active roles within society, but to also see a text beyond its surface meaning. They

will begin to learn how to critique the texts. By asking questions about what the intentions of the

author or the movie director are, students should have practice with critiquing all forms of texts

and their environment. Depending on the year, the director and author have different intentions

for the theme they desire to portray. This concept can be learned after reading the book and

viewing two different versions of The Time Machine. Also, the unit reveals the changing trends

in literacy and what it means for future communication. To grasp this idea, students will read

both George Orwell’s 1984, and Ray Bradbury’s short story “Harrison Bergeron.” Society has

adopted the use of e-mail and cell phones to function in their personal and professional worlds.

People are drawn to computers, rather than books, for their information. What does this trend

mean for the future?

After students gain practice with writing, students will engulf themselves in a unit that is

titled “Influential Choices and People of the Decade.” It is my goal to guide them toward a
Sandi Stupica
Professor Merritt
larger understanding of what images in these texts might suggest and allow them to locate

themselves as viewers in their own social context. With this goal in mind, it is important to

begin the year with contemporary texts so students can easily relate classic literature, which will

be read in later units, to issues of today. The first text, Stanley A. Renshon’s The

Transformations of George W. Bush, will emphasize the importance of literature for addressing

political decisions, and how it constructs the world around us. Students will write in journals and

will answer questions such as, “How did the president’s past formulate his future?” and “How

did Sept. 11 play a role in constructing today’s present?” As they answer these questions, they

will begin to form well-educated opinions about how their actions, as well as prominent officials,

affect society’s immediate future. Other texts that will be used during this unit are Bernard

Goldberg’s book 100 People Who Are Screwing Up America, Al Gore’s movie “An Inconvenient

Truth,” and Destiny Ward’s short essay “The Coldness of E-mail.” Students will create a

myspace or facebook page for their chosen politician (to collect background information) and

take quizzes for these texts.

The next unit will build on the idea that their actions affect society’s immediate future.

Due to advertising, common stereotypes are formed of images and things that are to be desired.

Rather than accepting the common image in advertisements, students should construct their own

ideas and become accepting of others. In Unit 3, “Construction of one’s own interpretation of

culture: a Media Literacy Unit,” students will draw on their prior practiced experience as they

interpret various images. The unit will include the different strategies used when advertising and

why they are used. After a week of instruction, the students will create a webquest where they

will have to critique and examine 1-3 advertisements. Then, they will share their results with the

class. To acquire an understanding of people typically “shunned” in American society, they will
Sandi Stupica
Professor Merritt
read Ask Me No More Questions and American Born Chinese. Ask Me No More Questions

describes how the events that happened after September 11, 2001 led many people of Middle

Eastern descent to no longer be accepted. They are only recognized as “illegal aliens” and even

terrorists. Most are suddenly wrongfully accused because they are not perceived “desirable” by

portrayed images of American culture. In the unit’s text, Ask Me No More Questions, the

protagonist is full of potential but is confined to the restrictions of what is perceived as

“desirable.” Similarly in the graphic novel, American Born Chinese, the nationality of the

protagonist prohibits him from feeling acknowledged in American society.

Similarly, unit 4 will also discuss perception of races in society and but also find what it

means to be American. This unit will concentrate on African Americans, but it could be applied

to all races and ethnicities. Society has made it difficult for African Americans, partially due to

advertisements and other forms of media, to identify with American culture as negative

preconceptions are passed. With perceived connotations, society can not always observed their

potential in making a positive and significant impact. During this unit, students will contemplate

how people are affected by repressive social systems. Also, they will gain an appreciation for

differences. To accomplish this, students will read and react to James McBride’s Color of Water

to learn how society responds to person with mixed ethnicity – the protagonist had a African

American father and a Caucasian mother. Langston Hughes poem “Let America Be America

Again,” and songs titled “Shining Through” and “Sumthin’ Wicked This Way Comes” will also

help students to shape their ideas. When readings have been completed, when journal entries

have been completed, they will create a video biography answering “what it means to be

Sandi Stupica
Professor Merritt
To allow students’ to convey their ideas and interpretations of texts, the end of the year

will be dedicated to poetry and writing instruction. Throughout the year students have been

provided a plethora of views and ideas. It is finally their big opportunity to take their knowledge

and to communicate their ideals and new wisdom. For unit 4, students will gain practice in

conveying their ideas in writing poetry, students will use Steve Kowitt’s book, In the Palm of

Your Hand as a guide. Students can be assessed on how they structure the poem, not on their

meaning. Also, a double-entry journal can be used to help students gain an understanding of the

assigned poems. During the I-Search Unit, their assignment will be to write a paper based on

research regarding a topic that is important to them. Students will be more apt to be interested in

researching and writing about their topic because they can choose to write about a topic that is of

great importance to them. Part of the research is to gain three interviews from primary resources.

From this, they will also learn to organize their thoughts before interviewing, and organize the

results of the interview as well as the results of their research. Not only will this help students

communicate their argument, but will also help them improve their scores in high-stake tests.

Overall, students will be more inclined to learn when the subject material is relatable.

Typically, it is easier for students to draw upon their linguistic knowledge when they are

knowledgeable and interested in the topic, no matter their background. From the approach of

multiple views and understandings; from classic literature to the use of internet - this curriculum

is designed to suit the needs and understanding of a variety of student interests. While most

come from generally stable families and go on to college, it is astonishing that some can make it

to school and focus on a lesson. Since students’ home life affects them tremendously, it is

impossible for their academic experience to be unaffected. Due to this struggle, relatable lessons
Sandi Stupica
Professor Merritt
can make it that much easier for these students and remedy some of their problems – and even

achieve higher test scores.