The Language Arts–reading literature and informational texts, writing, speaking, listening and language–are a major part of students’ elementary school program. The goal of Guilderland’s Language Arts program is to adhere to the K-12 New York State Next Generation Standards in English Language Arts and to develop literate students in the 21st century.
Students read and write everyday for various purposes and receive frequent written and oral feedback from their teachers and peers. Instruction occurs individually, in small groups and in whole class settings.
Students are expected to read and understand more complex material and write and speak with more sophistication as they progress through the grades. Students will read and respond to texts from a diverse range of authors, genres, cultures and perspectives. Attention to Language Arts skills and strategies is integrated into student learning throughout the day.
Learn more about the K-5 ELA Curriculum:
Middle School level
The middle school Language Arts program continues the focus on developing language learners as students meet more challenging demands in reading, writing, speaking, listening and viewing in the Common Core State Learning standards for English Language Arts. Students take the New York State English Language Arts assessments in grade 6, 7 and 8 each year. These skills are used and developed in an integrated manner assuring that students learn to use language to “gain information, discover meaning, understand logical relationships, and make judgments through critical listening, reading, and viewing; speak, write, and solve problems creatively; communicate emotions, ideas, opinions, values, experiences, and information; and discover both the power and the beauty of literature as a mirror of human experience, reflecting human motives, conflicts, values, and traditions.” While using language in meaningful contexts, students are taught and learn those aspects of language usage that will make them effective communicators – attention to audience and purpose, explicit vocabulary, and correct use of spelling, conventions of usage and grammatical concepts.
High School level
The English Department strives to fulfill New York State’s charge that all students work toward college and career readiness, as defined by the new Common Core Learning Standards. The literacy expectations of the CCLS focus on student achievement in English Language Arts pertaining to developing reading, writing, speaking and listening, and language skills.
Guilderland students study a wide range of fiction and non-fiction texts. Through reading, writing, and discussion, all students will develop broader perspectives, reconcile multiple textual interpretations, and become more critically aware of language and literature’s aesthetic qualities. Students at each grade level will have the opportunity to engage with challenging texts in order to expand their literacy skills, deepen their understanding and critical thinking, and discover an appreciation for the role that literature plays in our lives. Additionally, students will study the structure of argument and become more skilled at presenting their ideas in a thoughtful and effective manner through writing and speaking.