Homeschool High School Language Arts - English 1 Course

Online English Lessons, Writing Practice & Literacy Activities

High School curriculum
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High School Language Arts - English 1 Course Overview

Time4Learning offers an online, interactive, high school Language Arts curriculum that can be used for homeschool, afterschool, and summer skill building. At the high school level, Time4Learning is organized by courses rather than grade levels, so parents have the option of choosing any four as part of membership.

English 1 is one of four courses covering the Language Arts curriculum at the high school level. English 1 is taught using a combination of multimedia lessons, instructional videos, worksheets, quizzes, tests and both online and offline projects. The English 1 course is designed to prepare students for the English 2 course.

This page includes information about the material covered in the High School English 1 course, in addition to an overview of the high school program structure.

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Homeschooling High School Language Arts / English 1 Course Overview

English 1 is the first of four standards-based language arts courses provided by Time4Learning, and is a great addition to any homeschool approach. The English 1 course focuses on the elements of the story: plot & setting, theme & conflict, narrator & voice, and character. Materials are presented within an automated, student-paced system that teaches the lessons, reinforces concepts, time-stamps online activities (for attendance), tracks progress, and keeps printable reports that can be turned into student transcripts or included with homeschool portfolios.

When homeschooling with Time4Learning, parents are considered the "teacher of record", and the home from which they teach is the "school." Time4Learning offers its members a suite of online tools, teaching resources, and homeschool support to help, but ultimately, it is up to the parents to review and grade their student's offline lessons & writing projects, compare Time4Learning to their state standards, and make sure all graduation requirements are met.

Below, you will find a brief summary the lessons covered in each chapter of the high school Language Arts / English 1 course.

Chapter 1 - Plot and Setting

In this chapter students will learn about Plot and Setting. They will study fiction and non-fiction excerpts from Gift of the Magi, The Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge, Rules of the Game, Women in Chinatown and Asia's Angels, To Build a Fire, The White Heron, What is Communication?, and The Writing Process.

Lessons in this chapter are organized into the following sections:

  • Gift of the Magi - Students will practice using a dictionary. They will read and demonstrate their comprehension of the plot in the excerpt provided.
  • The Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge - Students will be introduced to the concepts of foreshadowing and flashback.
  • Rules of the Game - Students will discover how idioms make a passage more interesting. They will also learn how characters in the story can be affected by their individual cultures.
  • Women in Chinatown and Asia's Angels - In this non-fiction passage, students will explore how historical factors influence the passage.
  • To Build a Fire - Students will learn how man pitted against nature can be used as a way to create setting and plot. There are two Odyssey Writer assignments in this lesson.
  • The White Heron - Students will learn about personification, simile, and symbolism. They will find out how plot can be changed by setting. There are two Odyssey Writer assignments in this lesson.
  • What is Communication? - Students will learn two different types of communication, verbal and non-verbal and how the listener should respond to each.
  • The Writing Process - Students will learn about the important steps in the process of writing. They will demonstrate their understanding by completing two quizzes in this lesson.

Chapter 2 - Character

In this chapter students will learn the nuances of character development. The sections in this chapter are The Open Window, Thank You, Ma'm, The Necklace, Shirley Chisholm Biography and Speech, Communication: Analyze a Speech, Writing: Personal Narrative.

Lessons in this chapter are organized into the following sections:

  • The Open Window - Students will learn to recognize the protagonist from the antagonist.
  • Thank You, Ma'm - Students will learn how character is developed through dialogue.
  • The Necklace - Students will learn about characterization through character interaction, descriptions and actions. Vocabulary will be worked on by looking at the context of the passage.
  • Shirley Chisholm Biography and Speech - Students will read a speech, then use headings and subheadings to examine the structure of the passage.
  • Communication: Analyze a Speech - Students will dissect a speech to discover the reason for making it and the effectiveness of the words used in it.
  • Writing: Personal Narrative - Students will learn about personal narrative by going through the stages of writing. They will also learn how to properly use gerunds, participles and infinitives.

Chapter 3 - Theme and Conflict

This chapter teaches students about universal themes and the difference between internal, external and analyze conflict between characters. The lessons are The Most Dangerous Game, The Cask of Amontillado, Lines of Scrimmage, The Sniper, Prime Minister Koizumi Address, Communication: Oral Response to Literature, Writing: Literary Analysis.

Lessons in this chapter are organized into the following sections:

  • The Most Dangerous Game - Students will learn the universal theme of man vs. man while learning the difference between internal and external conflict.
  • The Cask of Amontillado - Students will learn more about symbolism, irony and foreshadowing while learning more about the theme of man vs. man.
  • Lines of Scrimmage - Students will learn to recognize theme and conflict by looking at cause and effect and character.
  • The Sniper - Students will reinforce their understanding of conflict by prediction and drawing conclusions.
  • Prime Minister Koizumi Address - Students will pinpoint the link between the relevance to history, the use of theme and the writers' purpose in a speech.
  • Communication: Oral Response to Literature - Students study the anatomy of an oral response to literature.
  • Writing: Literary Analysis - Students will explain the purpose, use present tense, third person, transition statements and revision to discover the parts of third person literary analysis.

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Chapter 4 - Narrator and Voice

Narrator and Voice are the focus of this chapter in which students will study points of view, kinds of narration, and how to develop a clear voice. This chapter is broken down into lessons on The Slump, The Yellow Wallpaper, The Bean Eaters, I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, (excerpt), Communication: Persuasive Speech - B. Jordan, Writing: Persuasive Essay.

Lessons in this chapter are organized into the following sections:

  • The Slump - Students will learn to recognize first person narration and when to use present or past tense in their writing.
  • The Yellow Wallpaper - Students will point out first person narration and understand how to use voice to build plot. They will also look at symbolism and tone.
  • The Bean Eaters - Students will examine a biographical sketch to learn about points of view and descriptive language.
  • I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, (excerpt) - Autobiography will be the framework for students to learn about tone and first person narration.
  • Communication: Persuasive Speech - B. Jordan - Students will study an important speech to find the purpose, how it is formed and the verbal style used.
  • Writing: Persuasive Essay - Students will choose a topic and point of view then write a persuasive essay. They will pay attention to the structure, their purpose and explain their position, while giving supporting data and contrasting views.

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Chapter 5 - Novel: Old Man and the Sea

In this chapter students will learn about novels by reading The Old Man and the Sea. Focus will be on the journalistic writing style, what drives the character, how the setting influences the story and what omniscient narration is while continuing to learn about theme, conflict and motif. Lessons are Old Man and the Sea: Background, Old Man and the Sea: Part 1, Old Man and the Sea: Part 2, Old Man and the Sea: Part 3, Old Man and the Sea: Part 4, Old Man and the Sea: Part 5, Old Man and the Sea: Part 6, Writing: Biography.

Lessons in this chapter are organized into the following sections:

  • Old Man and the Sea: Background - Students will see how the setting influences the story, learn how to use a timeline, and examine the journalistic writing style.
  • Old Man and the Sea: Part 1 - Students will point out the setting, characters and plot. They will see how omniscient narration, active and passive voice and foreshadowing is used in the novel.
  • Old Man and the Sea: Part 2 - Students will find out how sensory language helps a reader understand the characters and setting. They will see how new characters are introduced using a device called inciting incident.
  • Old Man and the Sea: Part 3 - Students will look at how to use theme, voice, motif and narration. They will recognize characterization and plot structure.
  • Old Man and the Sea: Part 4 - Students will see the use of foreshadowing, symbolism, voice, conflict, theme, rising action and climax in the novel.
  • Old Man and the Sea: Part 5 - Students will analyze how to employ theme, motif, character, plot, prediction and questioning.
  • Old Man and the Sea: Part 6 - Students will look at the idea of the tragic hero, the analyzation of theme and the tools of allegory, symbolism, development of character and motif.
  • Writing: Biography - Students will explain the purpose, parts and framework of a biography. They will compose questions, perform research, employ chronological order, make corrections for proper grammar use and proof a final draft.

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In the high school English I course,
students learn how to use context clues
in a text to expand their vocabulary

In this lesson, students are asked
to derive the meaning of a word by
using context clues within a sentence

9th grade english lessons

Chapter 6 - Poetry

Students will study poetry by reading several different selections and closely examining the structures of cinquain and diamante, as well as free verse, lyrics, sonnets and the application of poetic devices and figurative language. The lessons in this section are Cinquain and Diamante, Lyric Poem: Chicago, Lyric Poem: I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud, Nikki Giovanni: Speech and Free Verse Poem, Sonnet #2, Communication: Oral Performance of Poetry, Writing: Poetry Analysis.

Lessons in this chapter are organized into the following sections:

  • Cinquain and Diamante - Students will learn to recognize the cinquain structure. Focus will be placed on diamante structure and visualization and nouns, gerunds and adjectives will be reviewed.
  • Lyric Poem: Chicago - Students will learn how to use personification, rhythm, simile, and metaphor in lyric poetry.
  • Lyric Poem: I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud - Students will see how mood, imagery, personification, tone, simile and rhyme are used in a lyric poem.
  • Nikki Giovanni: Speech and Free Verse Poem - Students will explain the author's reasoning, mood and tone. They will also learn about poetic license in this free verse poem.
  • Sonnet #2 - Students will learn how to paraphrase by identifying the main idea. They will discover iambic pentameter, quatrain, rhyme scheme, couplet and rhythm in Shakespearean sonnets.
  • Communication: Oral Performance of Poetry - Students will learn about poetry as vocal art. Focus will be on interpretation through punctuation, fluency, prosody, figurative language, alliteration, repetition, and onomatopoeia.
  • Writing: Poetry Analysis - Students will learn the process of analyzing a poem through recognizing and writing concerning literary devices, genre, theme, sound and meter, style and mood, and also recognizing the proper use of modifiers while revising and editing.

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Chapter 7 - Non-fiction

This chapter focuses on non-fiction passages. Students will analyze excerpts from radio announcements, newspaper stories, press releases, historical speeches, memoirs, business letters, position papers and learn how to conduct interviews. Lessons in this chapter are Media Comparison: Make a Difference Day, Memoir: The Message of Gandhi, Position Paper: Martin Luther King, Jr., Speeches: Gandhi and Martin Luther King, Jr., Communication: Interview, Writing: Business Letter.

Lessons in this chapter are organized into the following sections:

  • Media Comparison: Make a Difference Day - Students will analyze the differences in the format of radio announcements, newspaper articles, and press releases based on the same intent and information.
  • Memoir: The Message of Gandhi - Students will look at a memoir to find the author's purpose, main idea and supporting details.
  • Position Paper: Martin Luther King, Jr. - Students will look at a position paper and a timeline to determine the main idea, supporting details, structure and purpose.
  • Speeches: Gandhi and Martin Luther King, Jr. - Students will look at two historical speeches to see the format of expository writing and how to employ rhetorical devices and the way to compare and contrast two pieces.
  • Communication: Interview - Students will learn the process and reasons for conducting interviews. They will investigate a topic, compose a list of relevant questions, employ levelheaded and well-mannered communication, take good notes and analyze how well the interview went.
  • Writing: Business Letter - Students will look at the reasons for writing business letters. They will learn the structure of a business letter and all of its parts. They will compare the variations in formal and informal writing and put together a final draft.

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Chapter 8 - Epic, Legend, Myth

In this chapter students will learn about the genres of Greek Mythology, Epic, Legend, and Myth while exploring The Odyssey. Lessons included in this chapter are Introduction to Greek Mythology, The Odyssey: Background, The Odyssey: Book IX Part 1, The Odyssey: Book IX Part 2, The Odyssey and Popular Culture, Writing: Compare and Contrast Essay.

Lessons in this chapter are organized into the following sections:

  • Introduction to Greek Mythology - Students will analyze a family tree, character map and a table as they learn about the genre of myth.
  • The Odyssey: Background - To prepare to read The Odyssey, students will look at a map, set up a character map and read material pertaining to the epic poem.
  • The Odyssey: Book IX Part 1 - Students will point out themes, guess the outcome, look at how the character is developing, and study flashback in this portion of The Odyssey.
  • The Odyssey: Book IX Part 2 - Students will explain the plot, examine the choices the character made and discuss how they relate from personal experiences.
  • The Odyssey and Popular Culture - Students will learn the attributes of a myth. They will also look at the differences between modern heroes and traditional heroes.
  • Writing: Compare and Contrast Essay - Students will look at the components in a compare and contrast essay. They will learn to think about how topics can be similar or contrasting. They will put this information to work by drafting a thesis statement, composing pertinent material, using transitions throughout the body of the text and finally finishing up the conclusion and editing.

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Chapter 9 - Drama

In this chapter Shakespeare and his play Romeo and Juliet will be highlighted. Students will explore man vs. man conflict, irony, protagonist, falling action, climax and conclusion, and Shakespearean comedy and tragedy.

Lessons in this chapter are organized into the following sections:

  • Shakespeare: Background - In preparation to read Romeo and Juliet, students will see the difference between Shakespearean comedy and tragedy, learn the characteristics of drama and read a synopsis of the play.
  • Romeo and Juliet: Act 2 Scene 2, Part 1 - Students will become familiar with stage terminology, how dialogue tells us more about the character, and how to decipher Shakespearean dialect.
  • Romeo and Juliet: Act 2 Scene 2, Part 2 - Students will look at characters according to conflict type, learn how to summarize Shakespearean dialect and read a plot diagram.
  • Romeo and Juliet: Act 5 Scene 3, Part 1 - Students will look at theme and symbolism, examine the characters, and learn about the differences in comedy and tragedy.
  • Romeo and Juliet: Act 5 Scene 3, Part 2 - Students will revisit the plot diagram to examine the falling action and conclusion of the play. They will also look at the characters and dramatic irony.
  • Functional Text: Manual - Students will learn the genre of expository writing and the reasons for it, its characteristics and how to format it using headings, bulleted lists and table of contents.
  • Communication: Verbal/Nonverbal Strategies - Students will learn ways to enhance their verbal communication such as volume, enunciation, pace, speed, tone of voice, pitch, intonation, and formal and informal language. They will also learn about nonverbal tactics such as posture, facial expressions, eye contact, gestures, distracting mannerisms and proximity.

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Chapter 10 - Research

In this chapter students will learn how to write a research paper. They will go through the process of coming up with questions, deciding on their primary and secondary sources, boil down their information, keep good notes, have an outline, form a thesis statement, and scrutinize their bias.

Lessons in this chapter are organized into the following sections:

  • Research Process: Generate Questions, Determine Topic - Students will get an introduction to the process of researching. They will focus primarily on how to choose a topic that is not too general and how to come up with questions about that topic.
  • Research Process: Evaluate Primary and Secondary Sources - Students will learn where to find and test primary and secondary sources for their research.
  • Research Process: Synthesize Information and Note Taking - Students will learn to sift through sources and arrange note cards. They will learn to filter out information that is not pertinent to their topic.
  • Research Process: Outline and Citations - Students will be taught how to arrange their notes, craft an outline and first draft, and how to form a thesis statement including supporting evidence. They will also learn the proper ways to cite sources.
  • Writing: Research Paper - Students will put their new information to work by writing a research paper. They will glean and filter information, write a thesis statement, and give supporting evidence. They will go through the levels of both the writing and research processes.
  • Communication: Analyzing Bias and Propaganda - Students will learn about methods for bias and propaganda by studying political ads for each.

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Chapter 11 - Novel: Farewell to Manzanar

This chapter focuses on the historical novel Farewell to Manzanar. Students will put into operation their understanding of character development, point of view, setting, theme, motif, conflict, rising action, climax, and falling action. There are 8 lessons in this chapter, Farewell to Manzanar: Background ,Farewell to Manzanar: Part 1, Farewell to Manzanar: Part 2, Farewell to Manzanar: Part 3, Farewell to Manzanar: Part 4, Farewell to Manzanar: Part 5, Farewell to Manzanar: Part 6, Farewell to Manzanar: Part 7.

Lessons in this chapter are organized into the following sections:

  • Farewell to Manzanar: Background - Students will look at a timeline to help them understand the setting and historical background of the novel.
  • Farewell to Manzanar: Part 1 - Students will look at how childhood memories influence viewpoint.
  • Farewell to Manzanar: Part 2 - Students look at how cultural differences influence the development of characters.
  • Farewell to Manzanar: Part 3 - Students look at character development is influenced by personal experience.
  • Farewell to Manzanar: Part 4 - Students will see how to employ symbolism, tone, conflict, and coming of age in a personal narrative.
  • Farewell to Manzanar: Part 5 - Students will look at how internal and external conflict are used in a personal narrative.
  • Farewell to Manzanar: Part 6 - Students will study how a business letter can cause change and its influence in a personal narrative.
  • Farewell to Manzanar: Part 7 - Students will examine how discrimination and the theme of coming-of-age relate in this novel.

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Time4Learning High School Courses - Program Structure

Time4Learning high school offers an online, interactive curriculum for ninth through twelfth grade that correlates to state standards. The majority of Time4Learning members use it for homeschool, although some use it as an afterschool alternative to tutoring, or for summer study.

High school is distinguished from the PreK-8th grades by an increased emphasis on higher order thinking skills, the effective combination of video with animation, and an increased number of writing projects designed to help students achieve overall college and career readiness. It is organized into courses that cover math, language arts, science, and social studies, with the optional elective courses of health and economics/finance also available.

Students use their own individual login to access Time4Learning's secure, ad-free learning environment. An automated system combines multimedia lessons, instructional videos, printable worksheets, quizzes, tests and both online and offline projects to teach the materials. The system also reinforces concepts, tracks progress, and keeps printable reports that parents can turn into student transcripts or include with homeschool portfolios.

In addition to our standards-based curriculum, Time4Learning members have access to a suite of online tools, lesson plans, teaching resources, and homeschool support to help them along their journey. Parents are considered the "teacher of record", and the home from which they teach is the "school." It is up to the parents to review and grade their student's offline lessons & writing projects, compare Time4Learning to their state standards, and make sure all graduation requirements are met.

It is also important to mention that Time4Learning is a curriculum provider-- not a school. Therefore, Time4Learning cannot be accredited, nor can homeschooled students "graduate" from Time4Learning. Visit our homeschool high school resources page for additional tools, tips and high school resources on this topic.

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