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English II


Teacher: Randy Nantz                          Email: Randy.Nantz@laurel.kyschools.us

Prerequisites: English I                        High School Credit(s): 1 

Course Description: Students enrolled in English II will continue to increase and refine their communication, reading, and critical thinking skills. High school students are expected to plan, draft and complete written compositions on a regular basis. English II students will also read extensively in multiple genres from world literature such as reading selected stories, dramas, novels and poetry, non-fiction, and persuasive writing.

Objectives: Students will strengthen their abilities to read critically, write analytically and persuasively, and speak effectively.  Students will learn how to use sources and document research correctly.  Students will also sharpen their abilities to work both independently and collaboratively.

Materials Used (textbooks, software, magazines, etc.): English textbooks and real world texts, various writing models, various novels and plays from an approved reading list. 


  • Grading policy:  Major tests, 600 points; Minor tests, 300 points; Daily grades, 100 points.

Procedures for Makeup Work/Tests: 

  • Students are expected to be responsible for makeup work.  If you know you have a conflict or upcoming absence, please see me to work out a plan for getting the work you will miss.
  • An effective English course requires considerable reading and writing.  You will be viewed as an adult, and as such, expected to complete all assignments on time.  Late work, unless previously cleared with me, or due to an excused absence, will receive a letter grade reduction.

Attendance Policy: Attendance is crucial to student success.  This course will follow the attendance policies approved by the CFI and Laurel County Board of Education.

Supplies (to be supplied by the student): 

  • Sturdy binder, ideally with pockets or folders
  • Two pocket folder
  • Flash drive

Class Rules: 

Students must adhere to the following rules in class each day or be subject to the school’s discipline plan.

1.  Be in seat on time.         

2.  Bring all needed materials.

3.  Turn work in on time.  It is also your responsibility to get and complete make up work.

4.  Be respectful and attentive (i.e. no cell phones, no talking while others are presenting, etc)

Consequences: The following actions may be taken should a student fail to adhere to the rules in place.

  1. Warning
  2. Warning and parent contact
  3. Referral and parent contact

Course Outline/Tentative Schedule/Major Assignments:

Unit 1: Can progress be made without conflict?  

Short Stories – “Early Autumn” by Langston Hughes, “The Monkey’s Paw” by W.W. Jacobs,   “Like the Sun” by R.K. Narayan, “The Open Window” by Saki, “Contents of a Dead Man’s Pocket” by Jack Finney

Autobiography – I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings by Maya Angelou

Writing – Journals, Narrative Essay, Persuasive Essay

Speaking – Career Choice Project, Group Discussions

Unit 2:  What kind of knowledge will change our lives?

Nonfiction Readings –The Sun Parlor by Dorothy West, Keep Memory Alive by Elie Wiesel

Expository Nonfiction – The Statue That Didn’t Look RightBlink: The Power of Thinking Without Thinking by Malcolm Gladwell

Science Writing – How to Look at Nothing and How to Use Your Eyes by James Elkins

Speeches – “A Toast to the Oldest Inhabitant: The Weather of New England” by Mark Twain

Humorous Essay – “The Dog That Bit People” by James Thurber

Writing – Persuasive Essay

Speaking – Persuasive Speech

Unit 3: What is the true nature of humanity?

Novel – Lord of the Flies by William Golding

Writing – Literary analysis

Speaking – Novel project presentation

Unit 4: Does all communication serve a positive purpose?

Poetry Collection 1 – “I Am Offering This Poem” by Jimmy Baca, “Making a Fist” by Naomi Shihab Nye, “The Fish” by Elizabeth Bishop,  “The Bridegroom” by Alexander Pushki

Poetry Collection 2 – “Sonnet 18” by William Shakespeare, “Do Not Go Gentle into That Good Night” by Dylan Thomas, “My City” by James Weldon Johnson, “Once cannot ask loneliness” by Priest Jakuren

Poetry Collection 3 – “Pride” by Dahila Ravikovitch, “The Wind-tapped like a tired Man” by Emily Dickinson, “Glory” by Yusef Komunyakaa, “Metaphor” by Eve Merriam

Poetry Collection 4 – “Meeting at Night” by Robert Browning, “Reapers” by Jean Toomer

Short Story – “By the Waters of Babylon” by Stephen Vincent Benet, “There Will Come Soft Rains” by Ray Bradbury

Memoir – The Way to Rainy Mountain by N. Scott Momaday

Writing – Poetry, Narrative, Expository Essay (510), Cause and Effect

Speaking – Paired Poetry Explication, Analysis of Media Messages