Language Arts Program Overview

Our Approach

Our Language Arts courses are built around compelling and meaningful works of literature, including novels and poetry. Our courses give life and meaning to informational texts, language, speaking, and writing assignments by contextualizing them with those great works of literature that hold particular appeal for students who are high school age.

We believe great literature is the most compelling way to learn about the rules of human nature and our own humanity. The stories and literary constructs themselves have value, but what happens to our own souls as we immerse ourselves in classical literature is of greatest value. As we learn to identify themes, character development, symbolism and cause-and-effect in literature, we become more skilled at recognizing them in our own daily lives. As we experience the successes and sorrows of memorable characters, we equip ourselves with the courage and understanding necessary to move forward in our own stories.

For us, literature is intimately connected to history because, for instance, there is no better way to learn about Ancient Greece than reading Aeschylus and Sophocles. So it is ideal if students can take U.S. History in conjunction with American Literature, World History with World Literature and Government with Political Literature and Short Stories.

Course Offerings

Courses Recommended Grade Credit       Delivery Format Prerequisites Versions
American Literature A 10 0.5 Live/Self-Paced None* Classic/Honors
American Literature B 10 0.5 Live/Self-Paced None* Classic/Honors
Political Literature 11 0.5 Live/Self-Paced None* Classic/Honors
Short Stories 11 0.5 Live/Self-Paced None* Classic/Honors
World Literature A 12 0.5 Live/Self-Paced None* Classic/Honors
World Literature B 12 0.5 Live/Self-Paced None* Classic/Honors

*Classes include high school essay writing. We require that students complete Writing A/B, Writing (Honors) A/B.

 

Writing Integration

At Leadership Academy of Nevada, all students are required to meet minimum writing standards in all disciplines––not just writing courses. Mentors in American Lit, Biology, Art Appreciation and our other courses ensure students understand our basic writing guidelines, and they hold students to one set of standards. Writing permeates our lives; this unique, integrated approach mirrors the real world.

Writing Tutor Lab

Students in our writing and language arts courses have access to a writing tutor lab. The tutor lab is a place where students can go to get live 1:1 help. Official lab hours are posted on each course homepage.

Students can go to the tutor lab as often as they like. Our tutors are skilled, friendly, and helpful to students. Tutors don’t give students answers; instead, they ask questions that help students discover the answers on their own and become more independent. We have found that our efforts to train students how to write are most successful when we create a volley of feedback that includes feedback, practice, and resubmission.

Writing Program

Our writing courses are designed to help students become proficient in the fundamentals of English composition. Leadership Academy of Nevada writing courses are taught twice per week and invite active student participation through discussions and application exercises. We take a structured approach to teaching writing and, we believe:

  1. Structural guidelines and specific requirements foster competency, independence, and creativity
  2. Mentors should introduce one concept at a time, model it extensively, and give numerous examples before requiring independence
  3. Students must practice writing daily. Shorter, more frequent assignments allow for faster progress
  4. Structure is rigid; style is fluid. Structure develops organizational skills while style brings writing to life. Both are essential

In short, we believe that structured writing is an excellent process to help students develop excellent writing skills.

Writing Courses

Students take Writing and Rhetoric Classic or Honors their freshman year. Students only need to take one of these courses to graduate, but many choose to complete all four semesters of our Writing courses in order to further develop their writing skills.

Complete the Writing Placement Assessment to determine whether or Writing is right for you.

Writing assumes that students have had an introduction to this topic and are ready to practice applying it in various types of essay construction from the beginning of the course.

The Feedback Loop

Feedback should be specific, useful, and timely. In the LANV Writing Feedback Loop, a student:

  • receives clear instruction from a mentor in the first class each week
  • practices applying new skills on a specific assignment
  • receives pointed written feedback and instruction
  • receives further instruction in the second class each week
  • practices applying the skills on another assignment
  • receives written feedback

Students go through this loop every week.

What programs influenced our writing program?

Our program has been influenced by other structured writing programs, such as The Institute for Excellence in Writing (IEW). In fact, our high school mentors continue to participate in IEW trainings. Students with IEW experience will see familiar tools in our writing programs, but no IEW experience is necessary.