The curricula in grades 9 and 10 provide students with opportunities to develop not only critical literacy skills outlined in the Common Core State Standards, but also proficiency in the "Four C's" of 21st century competencies: Critical thinking, Communication, Creativity, and Collaboration. Students in grade 9 will take either English 9R or English 9H; students in grade 10 will take either English 10R and 10H. The curriculum is uniform across the grade levels and aligned to the Common Core State Standards in ELA and Literacy for Grades 9-10, regardless of the course level. Differences in the degree of instructional scaffolding, pacing, and workload are what primarily distinguish an H-Level course from an R-Level course, but the thematic content and the CC literacy standards remain the same for all students.
GRADE 9: English-9 courses (both R and H levels) focus on the themes of identity formation and coming of age. Texts include, but are not limited to, To Kill a Mockingbird, The Odyssey, Romeo and Juliet, Speak, Candide, and The Catcher in the Rye. Student-produced writing assignments fall into three categories: narration, exposition, and argument. Students also prepare an annotated bibliography as part of their investigation into an authentic research question, which culminates in the production of a formal research paper.
GRADE 10: English-10 courses (both R and H levels) focus on the theme of the individual within the society. Texts include, but are not limited to, Into the Wild, Night, Lord of the Flies, Othello, Anthem, The Color of Water, and Persepolis. Students build upon the foundation of ninth grade, further developing their writing and language use skills in narrative, expository, and argumentative modes of expression, with greater independence and sophistication.
There are no prerequisites for any English courses offered at Nyack High School. However, we encourage students to have discussions with their parents, counselors, and English teachers, to consider their prior academic performance in English classes, and to assess the degree to which they actually enjoy the study of English Language Arts, prior to enrolling in advanced-level English classes.
There is no standardized New York State ELA exam in grades 9 or 10. Students will take the New York State Common Core English Regents Exam at the end of grade 11.