The English Department at Jonathan Dayton High School seeks to fully engage all students by challenging them with diverse pieces of literature, appropriate writing assignments, oral presentations, and media literacy. The English Curriculum is structured to meet the New Jersey Student Learning Standards. Teachers provide students with opportunities to read with comprehension, think critically, work collaboratively, and communicate effectively.
Each student is required to take four years of English during his/her high school years. In a theme study approach, all students will read several pieces of literature that have a common topic. The philosophy of the department is to develop student mastery in the integrated areas of reading, literature, language, composition, and oral communication. Critical thinking skills and strategies are discussed and students will receive preparation for state assessment tests, and the PSAT, ACT, and SAT examinations. They will also be able to register for Advanced Placement Classes or in many of the department elective courses offered, such as, Creative Writing, Dramatics, Journalism, and Yearbook.
All incoming 9th grade students will be scheduled for a class in English Literature and a class in Freshmen Writing and Research. These classes are designed to provide students with a solid foundation in writing, researching and language arts literary skills. Students will be introduced to the necessary skills and techniques for a research component of the curriculum. This will include: choosing a topic, narrowing the focus, selecting sources, gathering information, organizing ideas, and presenting a final project. Students will also culminate their achievements and knowledge in English with a senior project at the end of their senior year.