The Middle School English Program develops students’:

  • proficiency in writing and speaking
  • reading comprehension and retention
  • vocabulary
  • facility with figurative language and literary abstraction
  • understanding of grammar, usage, and syntax.

The department chooses literature to challenge, encourage, and engage students at each grade level. In addition to the reading that students are assigned in English class, each student also has a free choice book going at all times. A period is set aside each week for all students and faculty in the Middle School to read for pleasure. During this period, students read with their advisors, who are modeling pleasure reading themselves. Writing assignments, creative and expository, often are paired in some way with assigned reading. Each student’s vocabulary study is individualized through Membean, a web-based program, and vocabulary growth is monitored by each student’s teacher. Students study grammar at each grade level. Each year every student chooses and then declaims a significant work to his or her English classmates. Thus begins a school-wide series of auditions to discover approximately twelve excellent declaimers, three to five from each grade, who perform before the whole school at the annual Declamation Celebration each February or March.