Department Resources: English

Writing Curriculum

Saint Francis Prep Writing Curriculum 

Freshman Year

Formal instruction in grammar rules and usage. The curriculum covers the following topics: consistency of tense, fragments, forms of sentences (simple, compound, complex, compound-complex), clear pronoun antecedent, apostrophes, run-on sentences, active and passive voice, agreement in number of pronoun and antecedent, singular verb with singular indefinite pronoun, prepositional phrases, pronoun case.  Freshmen take grammar assessment exams.

Formal instruction in paragraph and essay writing. Students begin formal instruction in the literary essay.  By the end of freshman year, students have practiced and mastered the five paragraph essay.  The writing curriculum covers the following: essay structure, transitions between paragraphs, using appropriate diction, tone, proofreading, topic sentences in body paragraphs, adhering closely to a topic, supporting a position, writing for a particular audience.

Sophomore Year

Formal instruction in grammar rules and usage. The curriculum covers and reinforces the following topics which the students cover in freshman year: consistency of tense, fragments, forms of sentences (simple, compound, complex, compound-complex), clear pronoun antecedent, apostrophes, run-on sentences, active and passive voice, agreement in number of pronoun and antecedent, singular verb with singular indefinite pronoun, prepositional phrases, pronoun case. Sophomores take grammar assessment exams.

            In sophomore year, students improve their analytical skills by focusing on the expository essay.  The students come to understand the differences between the literary and non-literary essay. Students receive formal instruction in the literary essay and focus on improving their skills in writing this type essay. The writing curriculum covers the following: essay structure, transitions between paragraphs, using appropriate diction, tone, proofreading, topic sentences in body paragraphs, adhering closely to a topic, supporting a position, writing for a particular audience.

Junior Year

Junior year strengthens, expands, and reinforces the techniques of analytical writing which the students practiced in freshman and sophomore years. Students continue formal instruction in the literary essay, focusing on using the primary texts in their literary analysis.  Students sit for the Common Core English Regents Examination in June of junior year.  Throughout the year, students consistently practice writing  in preparation for the Regents exam.

Senior Year

In all the courses of senior year, students work to achieve the level of mature writing expected of secondary school graduates who will attend college. Students are introduced to the techniques of literary research and how to incorporate sources -- both paper and electronic-- into their literary analysis.  Students practice both the "on demand" writing of in-class essays and the formal "at home" papers.

Seniors also must write the personal essay on their college applications.  Individual English teachers may offer assistance with the composition and editing of these essays..

Writing Center

Selected students from all classes attend regularly scheduled sessions in the St. Francis Prep Writing Center.  Individual and small-group instruction emphasizes the parts of the writing process in which each student needs improvement.