This course emphasizes the consolidation of literacy, communication, and critical and creative thinking skills necessary for success in academic and daily life. Students will analyse a variety of informational and graphic texts, as well as literary texts from various countries and cultures, and create oral, written, and media texts in a variety of forms for practical and academic purposes. An important focus will be on using language with precision and clarity and developing greater control in writing. The course is intended to prepare students for college or the workplace.

Unit Titles and DescriptionsTime Allocated
Presenting for Success

Because presentations are required on a regular basis in college and in the workplace, this unit enables students to develop their skills in listening, speaking, and writing. After lessons on note-taking and listening to others’ presentations, students will write a formal letter, frame a proposal after they have chosen a topic, and present that proposal. In the process they will pay close attention to the quality and use of the language they are employing, create mind maps, reflect on their work, and after having had their work reviewed by a friend or parent, film the presentation and submit it for grading. The proposal encourages critical thinking, requires close, collaborative work with others, and necessitates that students pay attention to detail.

20 hours
Modern Anthology

The stories chosen for this course have been written in recent decades and deal with situations that are familiar and interesting to students at this level. Short lessons on style are integrated into the study in this section in order to make matters such sentence structure, punctuation, and transitional devices more relevant to the work at hand.

Similarly, the short poems in this unit reflect on topics that appeal to 4C students. Rather than study poetry solely for its technical merits, these lessons encourage students to reflect on larger issues they face. Topics such as the new technologies, travel, life in the city, and relationships with parents form a familiar backdrop to the reading and thinking students do in this unit. Rather than the traditional assignment on poetry analysis, students write their own poetry by easing into the process through brainstorming, writing a free verse poem, and finally, including devices such as rhyme. The poems are then presented in an online poetry workshop in which peers and teachers respond to the lines students produce.

20 hours

In a world that is becoming increasingly dominated by visual imagery, it is no surprise that magazines continue to attract a great deal of attention. While the publications continue as always, the formats have changed from hard copy versions and conventional subscriptions to eZines which are published entirely online. Students commonly refer to both formats, so this unit allows students to study online and hard copy texts and to reflect on how they are both similar yet different from each other. Aspects such as cover art, the editorial, and a feature article come under scrutiny as students consider the vocabulary of publishing, how new technologies become part of online publishing through blogs and videos, and the future of conventional mass market publishing in the magazine industry. To end the unit students will produce their own eZine which includes a cover page, an editorial, a feature article, and a link to a video that complements the content featured in the eZine.

30 hours
Steinbeck or Yousafzai

Rather than studying a lengthy piece of fiction, students may choose to work with two novellas by Steinbeck or a memoir by Malala Yousafzai. The amount of work in either choice is similar, and themes such as discrimination are evident in both works. The social and political contexts for all three works are dealt with in the works before students start their own explorations of the issues that surround the novellas and the memoir. In all cases, students study vocabulary that occurs in the works, discuss issues such as human rights, and use their previous learning in the course to reflect upon and carefully edit their work in order to produce a fully polished final assignment.

35 hours
Final Assessments

The final project is worth 15% of the final grade. Students will create a portfolio of their work from the course, reflect on skills development throughout the course, and publish the portfolio on their blog.

3 hours

This is a proctored exam worth 15% of your final grade.

2 hours
Total110 hours

Overall Curriculum Expectations

A. Oral Communication
A1Listening to Understand: listen in order to understand and respond appropriately in a variety of situations for a variety of purposes;
A2Speaking to Communicate: use speaking skills and strategies appropriately to communicate with different audiences for a variety of purposes;
A3Reflecting on Skills and Strategies: reflect on and identify their strengths as listeners and speakers, areas for improvement, and the strategies they found most helpful in oral communication situations.
B. Reading and Literature Studies
B1Reading for Meaning: read and demonstrate an understanding of a variety of literary, informational, and graphic texts, using a range of strategies to construct meaning;
B2Understanding Form and Style: recognize a variety of text forms, text features, and stylistic elements and demonstrate understanding of how they help communicate meaning;
B3Reading With Fluency: use knowledge of words and cueing systems to read fluently;
B4Reflecting on Skills and Strategies: reflect on and identify their strengths as readers, areas for improvement, and the strategies they found most helpful before, during, and after reading.
C. Writing
C1Developing and Organizing Content: generate, gather, and organize ideas and information to write for an intended purpose and audience;
C2Using Knowledge of Form and Style: draft and revise their writing, using a variety of literary, informational, and graphic forms and stylistic elements appropriate for the purpose and audience;
C3Applying Knowledge of Conventions: use editing, proofreading, and publishing skills and strategies, and knowledge of language conventions, to correct errors, refine expression, and present their work effectively;
C4Reflecting on Skills and Strategies: reflect on and identify their strengths as writers, areas for improvement, and the strategies they found most helpful at different stages in the writing process.
D. Media Studies
D1Understanding Media Texts: demonstrate an understanding of a variety of media texts;
D2Understanding Media Forms, Conventions, and Techniques: identify some media forms and explain how the conventions and techniques associated with them are used to create meaning;
D3Creating Media Texts: create a variety of media texts for different purposes and audiences, using appropriate forms, conventions, and techniques;
D4Reflecting on Skills and Strategies: reflect on and identify their strengths as media interpreters and creators, areas for improvement, and the strategies they found most helpful in understanding and creating media texts.

Teaching & Learning Strategies:

Students are exposed to a variety of genres throughout the course and develop skills to analyze and evaluate the effectiveness of texts which may include poems, short stories, novels, non-fiction texts, plays, videos, and songs or other media texts from a wide range of cultures and time periods. Students identify and use various strategies including building vocabulary, learning to understand and use features and organization of texts, and developing knowledge of conventions. Throughout the course, students develop into stronger readers, writers, and oral communicators while making connections to the workplace and international events.

Teachers differentiate instruction to meet the diverse learning needs of students. Instructors also use electronic stimuli including Discussion Boards, ePortfolio, and Dropbox to assist students in reflecting on their learning, and in setting goals for improvement in key areas while developing 21st century skills. These tools facilitate and support the editing and revising process for students as they create texts for different audiences and purposes.

  1. Identifying and developing skills and strategies – through modeling of effective skills, students learn to choose and utilize varied techniques to become effective readers, writers, and oral communicators.
  2. Communicating – several opportunities are provided for students to write and communicate orally.
  3. Generating ideas and topics – teachers encourage students to design their own approaches to the material by maintaining frequent (often daily) online communication with students, by allowing some freedom in how students respond to topics and questions, and by encouraging students’ independent thinking through discussion posts.
  4. Researching – various approaches to researching are practiced. Students learn how to cite sources and provide a works cited page at the end of longer assignments using MLA formatting.
  5. Thinking critically – students learn to critically analyze texts and to use implied and stated evidence from texts to support their analyses. Students use their critical thinking skills to identify perspectives in texts, including biases that may be present.
  6. Producing published work and making presentations – students engage in the editing and revising process, including self-revision, peer revision, and teacher revision all of which strengthen texts with the aim to publish or present student work.
  7. Reflecting – through the ePortfolio and other elements of the course, students reflect on the learning process, focus on areas for improvement, and make extensions between course content and their personal experiences.

Assessment, Evaluation and Reporting Strategies of Student Performance:

Our theory of assessment and evaluation follows the Ministry of Education’s Growing Success document, and it is our firm belief that doing so is in the best interests of students. We seek to design assessment in such a way as to make it possible to gather and show evidence of learning in a variety of ways to gradually release responsibility to the students, and to give multiple and varied opportunities to reflect on learning and receive detailed feedback.

Growing Success articulates the vision the Ministry has for the purpose and structure of assessment and evaluation techniques. There are seven fundamental principles that ensure best practices and procedures of assessment and evaluation by Institute of Canadian Education teachers. ICE assessments and evaluations,

  • are fair, transparent, and equitable for all students;
  • support all students, including those with special education needs, those who are learning the language of instruction (English or French), and those who are First Nation, Métis, or Inuit;
  • are carefully planned to relate to the curriculum expectations and learning goals and, as much as possible, to the interests, learning styles and preferences, needs, and experiences of all students;
  • are communicated clearly to students and parents at the beginning of the course and at other points throughout the school year or course;
  • are ongoing, varied in nature, and administered over a period of time to provide multiple opportunities for students to demonstrate the full range of their learning;
  • provide ongoing descriptive feedback that is clear, specific, meaningful, and timely to support improved learning and achievement;
  • develop students’ self-assessment skills to enable them to assess their own learning, set specific goals, and plan next steps for their learning.

The Final Grade:

The evaluation for this course is based on the student’s achievement of curriculum expectations and the demonstrated skills required for effective learning. The final percentage grade represents the quality of the student’s overall achievement of the expectations for the course and reflects the corresponding level of achievement as described in the achievement chart for the discipline. A credit is granted and recorded for this course if the student’s grade is 50% or higher. The final grade will be determined as follows:

  • 70% of the grade will be based upon evaluations conducted throughout the course. This portion of the grade will reflect the student’s most consistent level of achievement throughout the course, although special consideration will be given to more recent evidence of achievement.
  • 30% of the grade will be based on final evaluations administered at the end of the course. The final assessment may be a final exam, a final project, or a combination of both an exam and a project.

The Report Card:

Student achievement will be communicated formally to students via an official report card. Report cards are issued at the midterm point in the course, as well as upon completion of the course. Each report card will focus on two distinct, but related aspects of student achievement. First, the achievement of curriculum expectations is reported as a percentage grade. Additionally, the course median is reported as a percentage. The teacher will also provide written comments concerning the student’s strengths, areas for improvement, and next steps. Second, the learning skills are reported as a letter grade, representing one of four levels of accomplishment. The report card also indicates whether an OSSD credit has been earned. Upon completion of a course, ICE will send a copy of the report card back to the student’s home school (if in Ontario) where the course will be added to the ongoing list of courses on the student’s Ontario Student Transcript. The report card will also be sent to the student’s home address.

Program Planning Considerations:

Teachers who are planning a program in this subject will make an effort to take into account considerations for program planning that align with the Ontario Ministry of Education policy and initiatives in a number of important areas.

Planning Programs for Students with Special Education Needs, Program Considerations for, English Language Learners, Environmental Education, Healthy Relationships, Equity and, Inclusive Education, Financial Literacy Education, Literacy, Mathematical Literacy, and Inquiry Skills, Critical Thinking and Critical Literacy, The Role of the School Library, The Role of Information and Communications Technology, The Ontario Skills Passport: Making Learning Relevant and Building Skills, Education and Career/Life Planning, Cooperative Education and Other Forms of Experiential Learning, Planning Program Pathways and Programs Leading to a Specialist High Skills Major, Health and Safety, Ethics

Course Curriculum

1. Short Stories, Literary Terms and Response
Short Stories, Literary Terms and Response- L1 Character Trait List 00:00:00
Short Stories, Literary Terms and Response- L1 Character-1 00:00:00
Short Stories, Literary Terms and Response- L1 Conflict.doc 00:00:00
Short Stories, Literary Terms and Response- L1 Conflict.ppt 00:00:00
Short Stories, Literary Terms and Response- L1 Elements of Short Story 00:00:00
Short Stories, Literary Terms and Response- L1 Irony 00:00:00
Short Stories, Literary Terms and Response- L1 Literary Terms 00:00:00
Short Stories, Literary Terms and Response- L1 Plot Structure 00:00:00
Short Stories, Literary Terms and Response- L1 Setting 00:00:00
Short Stories, Literary Terms and Response- L1 Theme 00:00:00
Short Stories, Literary Terms and Response- L2 Rumplestiltskin 00:00:00
Short Stories, Literary Terms and Response- L2 Themes in Rumplestiltskin 00:00:00
Short Stories, Literary Terms and Response- L3 The Last Spin 00:00:00
Short Stories, Literary Terms and Response- L3.1 Plot Diagram for The Last Spin with Responses 00:00:00
Short Stories, Literary Terms and Response- L4 The Veldt 00:00:00
Short Stories, Literary Terms and Response- L5 All Summer in a Day 00:00:00
A1 Literary Response- The Last Spin10, 00:00
A1 The Last Spin Questions10, 00:00
A2 Literary Response- The Veldt10, 00:00
A2 The Veldt Questions10, 00:00
A3 All Summer in a Day Questions10, 00:00
A4 Literary Response10, 00:00
Literary Terms with Blanks TEST 02:00:00
2. Modern Anthology
Modern Anthology- MidSummer Night Dream 00:00:00
Modern Anthology- MSND Character Chart Plot 00:00:00
A1- A Mid Summer Night’s Dream- Media Assignment Handout10, 00:00
MSND Act 1- Character Plot Chart10, 00:00
MSND Act 2- Character Plot Chart10, 00:00
MSND Act 3- Character Plot Chart10, 00:00
MSND Act 4- Character Plot Chart10, 00:00
MSND Act 5- Character Plot Chart10, 00:00
3. eZines
eZines- L1 GR8 News 00:00:00
eZines- L1 GR8 Reading Notes 00:00:00
eZines- L2 Drinking and Driving Editorial 00:00:00
A1 Zero Tolerana Question Sheet10, 00:00
A2 Oral Opinion Essay Assignment10, 00:00
A2 Questions on News Articles10, 00:00
T1 Texting as dangerous as Drinking and Driving with Question TEST 02:00:00
4. Media Studies
Media Studies- 1 Deconstructing Ads 00:00:00
Media Studies- 2 Features of Advertisements 00:00:00
Media Studies- 3 Language of Advertising 00:00:00
Media Studies- 4 What is Bullying? 00:00:00
Anti Bullying Assignment Handout10, 00:00
Crash Opinion Paragraphs Assignment10, 00:00
Create Your Ad Assignment10, 00:00
PSA Assignment Getting Started10, 00:00
FINAL ISU- Culminating Activity10, 00:00

Institute of Canadian Education (ICE), Toronto.

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