Program Description

The high school English Department provides broad coverage of the texts of English, American and world literature. Through these sequential course offerings, students develop extensive knowledge of literature, progressively develop academic and creative writing skills, as well as enhance their knowledge and use of grammar, vocabulary, and communication skills.

General Policies

  1. Every student is required to take four full years of English in order to graduate from Lake Zurich High School.
  2. Successful completion of English I, II, III, IV or two .5 semester courses are mandatory requirements for graduation. This fourth year of English may be completed through elective courses offered within the department if taken during the senior year. However, students need to check with the specific college to find out if such elective coursework would be accepted as the fourth year English requirement.

Recommendation For Placement

  1. It is strongly advised that students follow their teacher’s recommendation for placement in the next year’s level of English. Teachers are well aware of the requirements and expectations of the various levels. Recommendations for placement are based on the student’s abilities.
  2. It is strongly advised that students who move up a level in placement have maintained at least a B+ in both semesters of their previous English course and have the recommendation of the teacher.
  3. Parents are welcome to contact the teacher or English Department Chair if concern about the recommendation for placement arises.

E849 English I

Prerequisites: See Freshman Guidelines
Open To: 9
1 Credit

English I is an introduction to world literature and includes the study of grammar, composition, vocabulary, and communication skills. Students are introduced to a writing process which will prepare them for the level of critical thinking and the organizational skills relevant to the required compositions in subsequent English courses.
Modifications and adaptations to the course materials are created based on student need.

E503 English I

Prerequisites: See Freshman Guidelines
Open To: 9
1 Credit

English I is an introduction to world literature and includes the study of grammar, composition, vocabulary, and communication skills. Students are introduced to a writing process which will prepare them for the level of critical thinking and the organizational skills relevant to the required compositions in subsequent English courses.

E505 English I – Honors

Prerequisites: See Freshman Guidelines
Open To: 9
1 Credit

English I Honors is an introduction to world literature and covers the same material as E503; however, more emphasis is placed on additional outside reading and writing projects. Honors students need to be highly motivated and demonstrate skills at a higher level of proficiency.

E851 English II

Prerequisites: English I Or Consent Of Department Chair
Open To: 10
1 Credit

English II is a survey of literary forms, interpretations, and personal and critical reactions to world literature. This course introduces students to a writing project which emphasizes literary analysis, documentation, research, and editing. A continuation of English grammar and a study of vocabulary will build upon those skills introduced in English I.
Modifications and adaptations to the course materials are created based on student need.

E521 English II

Prerequisites: English I Or Consent Of Department Chair
Open To: 10
1 Credit

English II is a survey of literary forms, interpretations, and personal and critical reactions to world literature. This course introduces students to a writing project which emphasizes literary analysis, documentation, research, and editing. A continuation of English grammar and a study of vocabulary will build upon those skills introduced in English I.

E523 English II – Honors

Prerequisites: English I Or Consent Of Department Chair
Open To: 10
1 Credit

English II Honors is a survey of literary forms, interpretations, and personal and critical reactions to world literature. This course has similar material as in E521; however, more emphasis is placed on additional outside reading and on stylistic strategies for writing concise sentences, eliminating sentence faults, and selecting precise words. Honors students need to be highly motivated and demonstrate skills at a higher level of proficiency.

E524 AP Seminar

Prerequisites: English I Honors or Department Chair Approval
Open To: 10
1 Credit

Advanced Placement Seminar is a foundational course that engages students in cross-curricular conversations that explore the complexities of academic and real-world topics and issues by analyzing divergent perspectives. Using an inquiry framework, students practice reading and analyzing articles, research studies, and foundational literary, and philosophical texts; listening to and viewing speeches, broadcasts, and personal accounts; and experiencing artistic works and performances. Students learn to synthesize information from multiple sources, develop their own perspectives in written essays, and design and deliver oral and visual presentations, both individually and as part of a team Ultimately, the course aims to equip student with the power to analyze and evaluate information with accuracy and precision in order to craft and communicate evidence-based arguments. AP Seminar is the first of a two course sequence. AP Research will be taken as the student’s English course during the Senior year.

E853 English III

Prerequisites: English I, II Or Consent Of Department Chair
Open To: 11
1 Credit

English III is an introduction and examination of American literature. This course explores all types of American literature including short stories, essays, poetry, and novels. This course continues to build upon the skills of vocabulary, grammar, and writing techniques taught in English I and II. A major research project utilizing library and computer facilities is also a requirement of this course.
Modifications and adaptations to the course materials are created based on student need.

E543 English III

Prerequisites: English I, II Or Consent Of Department Chair
Open To: 11
1 Credit

English III is an introduction and examination of American literature. This course explores all types of American literature including short stories, essays, poetry, and novels. This course continues to build upon the skills of vocabulary, grammar, and writing techniques taught in English I and II. A major research project utilizing library and computer facilities is also a requirement of this course.

E545 English III – Honors

Prerequisites: English I, II Or Consent Of Department Chair
Open To: 11
1 Credit

English III Honors classes cover material that is additional to what is covered in E543; more emphasis is placed on additional outside reading and writing projects. A major research project utilizing library and computer facilities is also a requirement of this course. Honors students need to be highly motivated and demonstrate skills at a higher level of proficiency.

E547 English III English Language And Composition – AP

Prerequisites: Recommended That Students Have Previous Honors Course Experience. English I, II Or Consent Of Department Chair
Open To: 11
1 Credit

The AP English Language and Composition course, designed to parallel a first-year college composition and rhetoric course, will help students become skilled readers of prose written in a variety of periods, disciplines, and rhetorical contexts, and to become skilled writers who can compose for a variety of purposes. By their writing and reading in this course, students should become aware of the interactions among a writer’s purposes, audience expectations, and subjects, as well as the way generic conventions and the resources of language contribute to effective writing. The course is designed to help prepare students for the AP English Language and Composition Exam in an attempt to receive advanced placement and/or credit in the freshman year of college.

E555 English IV – World Literature

Prerequisites: English I, II, III Or Consent Of Department Chair
Open To: 12
.5 Credit

English IV offers students an opportunity to examine a variety of literature and is designed for the college bound student. This course covers literature from countries such as England, Ireland, India, and China. The writing content of this course is focused on expository, persuasive, and narrative writing. Papers consisting of critical reviews of works of literature are a requirement for the course.

E855 English IV

Prerequisites: English I, II, III Or Consent Of Department Chair
Open To: 12
1 Credit

This course gives students the opportunity to explore a variety of Language Arts courses. This class will be split into four quarters, with each quarter focusing on a different part of English. First quarter focuses on Composition. Students will review the basics of grammar, develop strong paragraphs, and write for a variety of purposes. Second quarter concentrates on Public Speaking. Students will build confidence to speak in front of an audience by participating in speaking and vocal exercises. Students will also complete an informative, demonstrative, and persuasive speech. Third quarter focuses on Contemporary Literature. Students will be introduced to a piece of literature that is popular as well as thought provoking. Students will participate daily in class discussions on themes, plot, and characters. Lastly, students will complete an independent novel project in the fourth quarter. Students will pick a book of his/her choice from a wide array of best-selling and award winning novels. Students will make connections to the literature through response journals as well as a culminating project.
Modifications and adaptations to the course materials are created based on student need.

E559 English IV – Honors

Prerequisites: Recommended That Students Have Prior Honors Course Experience.
English I, II, III Or Consent Of Department Chair
Open To: 12
1 Credit

English IV Honors is a course that stresses advanced literary forms, advanced interpretations of literature, and effective communication skills. This course emphasizes British literature and outside reading in world literature. Analytical and expository writing will be the focus of the writing portion of this course. Intensive outside reading and extensive use of library resources is required.

E569 English IV Composition

Prerequisites: English I, II, III Or Consent Of Department Chair
Open To: 12
.5 Credit

This course is intended for all college bound students. This course will offer in-depth training in the structure of paragraphs, essays and research papers while emphasizing the process it takes to be a successful writer. The teacher will address the needs and work to set goals for all students. Students will develop proper peer-editing and proofreading skills in addition to developing stronger writing skills. The students will develop skills in analytical, descriptive, expository and persuasive writing using a variety of fiction and non-fiction works as models, resources, and topics. Students will use technology to compose and to learn self editing techniques.

E567 English IV Contemporary Literature

Prerequisites: English I, II, III Or Consent Of Department Chair
Open To: 12
.5 Credit

This course is an introduction to the reading and enjoyment of popular, yet thought-provoking and educationally valuable literature. Students will learn to look at life at different levels through the examination and discussion of various ethical and moral questions raised in the themes, plots, and characters of contemporary literature. Students will have the opportunity to interact, argue, criticize, explain, and defend varying points-of-view discovered in some of the great literature of the late 20th and 21st century. Contemporary Literature will expose students to literature that will allow them to make personal connections through group discussions, literary circles, projects, and analytical composition.

E537 English IV Writing/Analysis Of Media Communications

Prerequisites: English I, II, III Or Consent Of Department Chair
Open To: 12
.5 Credit

The objective of this course is to provide students the background knowledge and skills to become active and discerning consumers of media, and gain the necessary tools to increase their visual and social literacy skills. The first quarter is an examination of the way various media use bias to influence the decisions of consumers. The second quarter is a study of how filmmakers use the techniques specific to film to tell stories. Through research, multiple written reports, discussions, and oral presentations, students will formulate inquiries and develop their own perspectives on the uses of media in society. Please be advised that the NCAA Clearinghouse will not accept this course towards eligibility for Division I and II athletics.

E561 English Literature And Composition – AP

Prerequisites: Recommended That Students Have Prior Honors Course Experience.
English I, II, And III Or Consent Of Department Chair
Open To: 121 Credit

The AP Literature and Composition course is designed to parallel a first-year college intensive writing course in literature. The course is dedicated to developing students’ critical thinking skills; inculcating within students the methods of traditional literary analysis; encouraging multiple interpretations of both discrete texts and broader human behavior; providing extensive practice writing and reading in English; and rewarding original thinking and personal goal-setting. The course includes the close reading and analysis of literature from many different periods in history, cultures, and traditions. Writing assignments, quizzes, and analysis exercises are all based on recent AP exams and recommended methods of instruction. The course is designed to help students prepare for the AP English Literature and Composition Exam offered for advanced placement and/or credit in the freshman year of college.

E513 Journalism I

Prerequisites: Recommended Completion Of English Courses With A Grade Of “C” Or Better Or Recommendation Of Instructor
Open To: 9, 10, 11, 12
.5 Credit

Journalism I & II are courses in written and oral communication. Journalism I & II are designed to build strong writing, editing, and speaking skills for students of all age and ability levels. Students survey all aspects of print journalism, from legal and ethical issues to myriad writing forms to photography and design. Students also discuss current events and media’s role in society. Both courses make extensive use of the journalism computer lab and desktop publishing software. Journalism I & II are devised as separate, sequential classes.
Journalism I surveys legal and ethical issues of the press, as well as historical development of print journalism. Journalism II focuses on news, writing, editing, and design. It is advised that students enroll in J-I first and progress to J-II. Class members may function as an auxiliary part of the school media staff by reporting on school-related events to develop news writing skills. Students are eligible to be considered for leadership positions on the school media staff on successful completion of Journalism I & II. This course is an English elective and does not count towards the English graduation requirement.

E514 Journalism II

Prerequisites: Completion Of Journalism I With A Grade Of “C” Or Better Or Recommendation Of Instructor. Recommendation Of Instructor
Open To: 9, 10, 11, 12
.5 Credit

Journalism I & II are courses in written and oral communication. Journalism I & II are designed to build strong writing, editing, and speaking skills for students of all age and ability levels. Students survey all aspects of print journalism, from legal and ethical issues to myriad writing forms to photography and design. Students also discuss current events and media’s role in society. Both courses make extensive use of the journalism computer lab and desktop publishing software. Journalism I & II are devised as separate, sequential classes. J-II builds on skills from J-I and operates on the premise that students have mastered concepts of newsworthiness and journalistic writing style. J-II provides in depth development of news, opinion, feature, and/or sports writing, writing styles which demand advanced organization and delivery. J-II students also work toward developing design skills. It is advised that students enroll in J-I first and progress to J-II. Class members may function as an auxiliary part of the school media staff by reporting on school-related events to practice news writing skills. Students are eligible to be considered for leadership positions on the school media staff on successful completion of both Journalism I & II. This course is an English elective and does not count towards the English graduation requirement.

E515 Advanced Journalism News Media Production- Honors

Prerequisites: Completion Of Journalism I & II. Recommendation Of Instructor Required. May Be Repeated As A Course Selection.
Open To: 10, 11, 12
1 Credit

Advanced Journalism builds on skills learned in Journalism I & II and allows students to work as the school’s media staff. Students produce the school magazine and publish daily stories to LZBearFacts.com. The course emphasizes strong writing and editing, and requires students to meet assigned deadlines for various aspects of the student media publications. Students also practice digital photography, photographic manipulation, artistic design, and visual storytelling through their work in print and digital publications, as well as associated social media accounts. Students apply knowledge of subject matter in designing and managing all aspects of the school media. Advanced Journalism is a year-long course. This course is an English elective and does not count towards the English graduation requirement.

E535 Public Speaking

Prerequisites: None
Open To: 10, 11, 12
.5 Credit

Public Speaking is a course designed to give the student poise and confidence in speaking before an audience. This course stresses a variety of speaking exercises and verbal presentations. Other activities include developing outlines for speeches, effective library research and the study of voice production. Students participate both as presenters and evaluators.

E533 Creative Writing

Prerequisites: None
Open To: 10, 11, 12
.5 Credit

Creative Writing is a semester-long course for the imaginative and creative writer. Students who have been successful in the course have typically maintained a “C” average or better in their English courses. Required student writings will take the form of poems, short stories, non-fiction, and plays. Classroom discussions will focus on the evaluation of published writings of professional authors, an examination of the use of literary devices in writing, and workshops that examine and critique the writing of classroom participants.

Library Assistant

Prerequisites: None
Open To: 9, 10, 11, 12
.25 Credit

Library Assistant is a position in which students serve in the library during study hall. This is a non-academic credit. Responsibilities include working with computers, checking out materials, creating book and bulletin board displays, and delivering passes. Because the school does not grant .25 credit, two semesters of being an assistant is necessary to achieve .5 credit.

E525 Reading Strategies I

Prerequisites: None
Open To: 9 (By Recommendation)
1 Credit

This intervention course is for freshmen who need to improve their comprehension, academic vocabulary, and acquire the reading and writing strategies needed to be a successful student. Students will experience many activities and strategies that will help to increase their understanding in all subject areas. Students will set goals to improve skills while building the confidence needed to be successful in core subject areas. Grades are pass/fail only. This course is a full-year English elective and does not count towards the English graduation requirement.

E527 Reading Strategies II

Prerequisites: None
Open To: 10 (By Recommendation)
1 Credit

This intervention course is for sophomores who need to improve their comprehension, academic vocabulary, and acquire the reading and writing strategies needed to be a successful student. Students will experience many activities and strategies that will help to increase their understanding in all subject areas. Students will set goals to improve skills while building the confidence needed to be successful in core subject areas. Grades are pass/fail only. This course is a full-year English elective and does not count towards the English graduation requirement.

E528 Reading Strategies III

Prerequisites: None
Open To: 11, 12 (By Recommendation)
1 Credit

This intervention course is for juniors and seniors who need to improve their comprehension, academic vocabulary, and acquire the reading and writing strategies needed to be a successful student. Students will experience many activities and strategies that will help to increase their understanding in all subject areas. Students will set goals to improve skills while building the confidence needed to be successful in core subject areas. Grades are pass/fail only. This course is a full-year English elective and does not count towards the English graduation requirement.