7th Grade Syllabus 2022- 2023

  • centy        Mrs. Annie Shea                        2022 - 2023                          City Honors School



    Course Title: English 7: Intro to Lit I

    ***The following course outline is not set in stone. Information will be covered but may not be in the order presented. ***


    Overview: Through the use of literature, research, writing, discussion and presentation, we will be focusing on how language plays an important part in the communication of ideas, facts, opinions, and history. We will use literature as a starting point for some of our writing.  We will also be focusing on study skills and test strategies to assist you in preparation for up-coming exams. 


    Expectations:   My expectations of you are very high. I will be working with you to meet the demanding State and City Assessments. We will be reading, planning, researching, and listening. You will present some of your work.  I expect you to put in the time and effort necessary to achieve personal success. You will have daily homework although not all of it will be written.  I do expect you to be punctual and prepared for each class and that your homework is complete. Assignments and projects should be turned in on time. I am available during and after school and via the Internet to assist you or answer any questions you may have.  My teacher web page is located at: /webpages/ashea/ and can be found at cityhonors.org under my staff name.


    Course Objectives:

      To enable students to meet current NYS Learning Standards by having them read, write, listen and speak for:

                     a. Literary response and expression

                    b. Information and understanding

                    c. Critical analysis and evaluation

                    d. Social interaction

                    (For more information of specific State Standards and Performance Indicators, refer to                 http://www.nylearns.org/standards/gradeLevel.asp       (Language Arts: Grade 8)

      IB content is integrated into this class through various pieces of literature, an ability to form an opinion before and after researching various ideas, cultures, beliefs and coming to an understanding that diversity is an important aspect of the IB curriculum. According to the International Baccalaureate Organization, “These programmes encourage students across the world to become active, compassionate and lifelong learners who understand that other people, with their differences, can also be right.” (http://www.ibo.org) 

      Recognize a range of literary elements and techniques, such as figurative language, allegory, irony, symbolism, and to use these elements to interpret the work.

     Recognize and respond to historical and contemporary social, political, and cultural conditions in the presentation of literary text.

      To give oral presentations while utilizing voice, tone, confidence, and language appropriate to the audience/task.

     To learn and use a wide range of vocabulary words.

     To be able to read, write and articulate information regarding literature, current events, ideas, etc.


    Method of Evaluation: Rubrics are used for student writing and presentations. You will receive a copy of the rubric that will be placed in the Writing section of your notebook.      

    Letter Grades are given every 10 weeks based on the following:

    1. Writing


    2. Literature/Reading


    3. Assignments/Homework


    4. Special Categories (Presentations, Visuals, Participation, etc.)



    If there is a change in the Method of Evaluation, I will keep you informed. It does change due to assignments and projects we are working on.



    VocabularyI believe that one of the purposes of learning vocabulary is to use it. We will be using texts, SAT vocabulary lists, and other resources to expand our knowledge. Why is vocabulary important?


    Major Units:


    1: Finding Home: Refugees

    2: Working with Evidence-Taking a Stand

    3: The Civil Rights Movement and the Little Rock Nine

    4: Code Talkers Standing Up With The Marines for Freedom


    Literature: (Pieces are subject to change.) Selections from the NYS Grade 8 ELA Modules, but are not limited to:

    One Crazy Summer  Rita Williams-Garcia

    Inside Out and Back Again Thanhha Lai

     “The Vietnam Wars” by Tod Olson

    “Forgotten Ship: A Daring Rescue as Saigon Fell” by Joseph Shapiro and Sandra Bartlett

    To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee 

    “Those Winter Sundays” by Robert Hayden 

    “Incident” by Countee Cullen  

    “Solitude” by Ella Wheeler Wilcox 

    “Equal Rights for Women” by Shirley Chisholm 

    Excerpts from “Great Society” by Lyndon Johnson  

    “Ain’t I a Woman?” by Sojourner Truth  

    To Kill a Mockingbird. Dir. Robert Mulligan. Perf. Gregory Peck. 1962. Film.

    Carlotta Walls LaNier, A Mighty Long Way: My Journey to Justice at Little Rock Central High School

     Plessy v. Ferguson, Supreme Court case.

     Alexandra Lutz, “Life in the South after the Civil War” (video)

    14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.

    Christian Bryant, “Video Overview: Plessy v. Ferguson” (video).

    “Jim Crow Laws” by National Park Service

    David Pilgrim, “What Was Jim Crow?”

    Joseph, Bruchac, Code Talker: A Novel About the Navajo Marines of World War Two


    Homework: Homework is a continuation of class and should be completed. You will have daily homework although not all of it will be written. There are always vocabulary words to be studied, stories to be reviewed, books to be read, or books to be written on. Please do not believe that I did not assign homework. There is homework each night. In general, homework should take 15 - 30 minutes to complete. (This may be longer during times where we are researching and/or writing a paper.)


    If you turn in an assignment late, be prepared to lose points on it. Two days after the due date, the assignment becomes a zero. If your assignment is missing, it will be documented on Infinite Campus. When you turn it in, I will enter the date you turned it in. If you do hand in an assignment past the two days, you will have the date that you turned in the assignment to me on your progress report. These reports are sent home to your parent(s) every 5 weeks. This keeps both of us honest. Also, I do not lose papers. If an assignment is shown as missing on Infinite Campus, then you are responsible for turning that assignment in. If you are positive you turned it in, check the “Orphaned Papers” board (maybe your name wasn’t on it...maybe you left it behind... or maybe you put it into another folder or notebook.) Check first. Please check your locker also. I'm willing to work with you. Speak with me after checking.

    I do not accept late assignments during the weeks of 5-week reports being sent home or the weeks of grades closing.

    **There is NO Two-Day Rule for Final Papers, Presentations, and Visuals. These are due on the date given.  A student will lose 50% for the first day of being late. If there are other assignments that do not have this rule applied to them, students will be informed when the assignment is given. **

    ***If you are absent on a due date, the assignment becomes due the day after you return. ***

     Please come and talk with me if you need an extension. I understand that things happen, but I don’t know if you don’t tell me. Communication is key. Assignments and homework are 15% of your grade.  The points vary according to the assignment, but each assignment will be worth at least one point.


    Major Assessments/Projects:

    There will be 1-2 per marking period. More information will follow about smaller assessments/projects. Rubrics are used in the evaluation and grading and will be given to students before a project begins.


    Written Work Requirements:

    You will be writing on a daily basis. You will be asked to turn in about 75% of your written work. The other 25% will be used as a tool to assist you with editing and revision. All final copies should be typed with the proper heading on the first page or title page.  Follow the directions given in the assignment, especially if you are required to type a cover page.


    Academic Integrity:

    Plagiarism is the use of someone else’s words or ideas without giving proper credit. This includes paraphrasing a source without giving proper credit. Plagiarism is a SERIOUS breach of academic integrity and any assignments containing plagiarism will earn a zero. Papers taken for cheating on a test will earn a zero as well. You are expected to do your best. If you are having difficulties, ask before the paper is due or before it is test time. Be honest.


    Supplies: For English 7, you will need:

    ___ English - 1" binder (Other subject’s papers are not to be kept in the English binder). We will clean the binders out at the end of each marking period, so larger binders are not necessary.

    ___ 1 pack of 5 dividers                                          

    ___ Loose-leaf paper (college ruled)                           

    ___ pens (blue or black ink only)                                       

    ___ Pencils (#2) (an eraser will be helpful)

    ___ Highlighters

    ___ a “jump”, “stick”, or “flash” drive (good size is 4 GB … Your child’s name s/b the name of the device. This can be used for other classes too. )



    You will need a notebook specifically for English. It must consist of five sections and you will use dividers for each section:

    Section I : General Notes

    Section II : Vocabulary

    Section III : Grammar

    Section IV : Reading - This section will begin with a T.A.G. Sheet. Your T.A.G. Sheet stands for Title, Author, Genre. Your summer reading and readings we complete in class will have this information placed onto the T.A.G. Sheet. Your T.A.G. Sheet will act as a table of contents for the notes you will take on subsequent pages.

    Section V : Writing

    If you have chosen to have an additional three sections (or 8 tabs):

    Section VI: Journals

    Section VII: Research/Citing

    Section VIII: Feedback Sheets


    Methods of Communication with Parents and Students:

    You can reach me in various ways. I can be contacted at school at (716) 816-4230 x 1300. I check for messages during breaks and at the end of the day.

    If you call during school hours, voice mail is available on my phone, so please leave a message with your phone number so that I may call you back.

    I can receive e-mail at school if it is sent to ashea@buffaloschools.org . I only check this e-mail account.

    If you send me a message, I will try to respond to you that day. I will answer you when I receive the message. Please let me know how best to contact you and I will respond that way. I encourage my students to contact me via computer. Also, if your parent has written a note to me inside of your agenda book, please show it to me during homeroom or at the end of class.  

    Extra Help Opportunities:

    I am available during the day and sometimes after school for extra help. During school hours, I am available 1st , 2nd, and 5th periods. This is not every day. Talk with me if you need help after-school. I am available on-line also (see above).


    Our Code:

    Respect, Responsibility, Response

    These are the expected behaviors that will set the tone for our community this year. We will RESPECT each other, the facility, and ourselves. We will accept RESPONSIBILITY for our own actions. We will RESPOND thoughtfully (not react without thinking) to each other. 




    Please return the last page with your signature and your parent’s signature. Place the rest of the syllabus into:


    Section I: General Notes


    I have received the syllabus for English 7: Intro to Lit I. It has been read.


    Please return only this page with your signature and your parent’s signature. Place the rest of the syllabus into:


    Section I: General Notes




    Student Signature:_________________________________ Period # _____           Date:___________



    Student name PRINTED:___________________________________



    Parent (s):___________________________________________________  Date:_________________




                  ___________________________________________________    Date:_________________