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Academics

English / Language Arts

Fifth Grade Language Arts 
Novels, short stories, picture books and poetry are used during the year in reading class.  Recurring themes throughout the literature include survival, relationships with family and peers, decision making, prejudice, independence/interdependence and friendship.  These themes foster a better understanding and awareness of different cultures and people.

The language arts component blends the study of grammar with the process of writing in an effort to encourage students to become more independent, capable writers.  

Portfolios are used to keep track of progress in reading and writing.  Students are given opportunities to explore both expository and creative writing styles.  Many written assignments (which include the process from prewriting to final draft) are kept in the portfolios.  Students also keep a reading log and response journal.

English Grades Six through Eight
The objective of the Chapin School English program in grades 6 – 8 is to make each student a more responsive reader and a more proficient writer.  This includes a mastery of the written word so that it is usable as a tool for expression, both orally and in writing; the development of comprehension skills which allow the student to derive meaning from and to react to what is read; a fostering of critical thinking through the analysis of literature; and the establishment of life-long skills of reading enjoyment.

The literature component is dynamic and differentiated in its flexibility and seeks to respond to the interests and needs of each group of students.  A variety of literary genres is explored through the study of novels, short stories, plays, poetry and other forms of writing, emphasizing the importance of shared experiences through a multicultural selection of materials.  The methodology is equally diverse, ranging from teacher-directed discussion groups to self-selection.

The composition component blends the study of grammar with the process of writing in an effort to encourage students to become more independent, responsible writers.  Students are given opportunities to explore both expository and creative writing styles.  Multiple drafts are highly encouraged.


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