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The SWC English Department's philosophy regarding implementation of the Ministry of Education's six-strand IRP for English Language Arts 8-12; (Reading and Writing, Listening and Viewing, Speaking and Representing).

  • A study of literature will take place at every grade level. This will involve the introduction to and use of literary terminology in relation to specific literary works in various genres, including short stories, poetry, plays, novels, and non-fiction (for example, letters, essays, and journals). We are committed to the inclusion of Canadian works at all grade levels.
  • The process of writing will be taught at all grade levels.
  • Instruction in grammar will be integrated into the study of literature and writing at each grade level, with special attention to the use of articles, verb tenses, and subject/verb agreement.
  • Participation in oral activities, both formal and informal, will be encouraged and assessed at each grade level.
  • Media literacy--visual, audio, and print--will be integrated within the curriculum at each grade level along with print literacy.
  • Instruction in the ethical and practical application of Information Technology will be an integral part of the curriculum at all grade levels (for example, the use of computers, word-processing, the Internet, and e-mail).

Areas of special focus and concern in the SWC English Department's approach to the teaching of English:

  • We will encourage independent reading to produce life-long readers.
  • We will continue to search for and acquire works of literature which will appeal to the students as well as the teachers (for example, graphich novels, contemporary works, and Canadian literature).
  • We agree that specific literary works will be taught to all students at each grade level in order to form the basis for shared discussions throughout the English curriculum. These choices will be made by grade-level teachers each year.
  • We will encourage personal writing so that students will develop confidence and competence in their ability to produce and substantiate informed positions.
  • We will encourage productive talk by a variety of means (for example, small-group activities, literary discussion, language exercises, and preparation for debates and speeches).
  • As long as the Ministry of Education holds provincial exams, the SWC English Department will prepare students to meet the demands of standardized tests by presenting grade-wide final exams.
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