The mission of the Owings Mills High School English Department is to provide a 21st century learning experience through an integrated language arts program. Highly qualified teachers provide a top-notch educational program that aligns with the Common Core State Standards. The cornerstone of this learning experience is the focus on literacy, which prepares students for the rigors of post-secondary learning. Students are challenged to think critically by reading fiction and non-fiction texts, writing, and participating in discussions.

The goal of the English Department is to create an environment where every student is valued and respected for his or her unique gifts and talents. By facilitating strong relationships, integrating technology into lessons, and focusing on building a strong base in literacy, students graduate prepared for whatever their future may hold.

Course Offerings

English 9

The English 9 program culminates the study of literary genre initiated in middle school and provides a balanced program of reading, writing, speaking, listening, grammar, usage, and mechanics skills within the context of literature. Participating in a variety of integrated, student-centered, interdisciplinary activities, students learn to process information efficiently, examine ideas critically, and express themselves effectively in the real-life worlds of study, work, and leisure.

English 9 GT

The English 9 GT program introduces several approaches to literary criticism which students use to examine the universal themes expressed in a variety of genres and forms from both early and modern literature. Open-ended and structured writing experiences, significant research opportunities, and frequent oral/aural activities ensure the continued growth in all major skill areas.

English 10 World Literature

The English 10 program is an integrated language arts program of literature, composition, grammar, usage, and mechanics focuses on developing awareness of various world cultures as expressed through literature. The program continues developing skills in reading/interpreting, writing, listening, speaking, language, thinking, and research through the study of a variety of literary genres. Some themes/issues in this course make connections to the Grade 10 world history course.

English 10 GT

The English 10 GT program is organized thematically to present the universality of the search for meaning in society through its expression in a variety of cultures and historical time periods. The focus on literary criticism begun in GT English 9 is continued with the introduction of three new approaches and is synthesized with the study of a literary work that addresses the interplay of all the approaches. A formal research paper, frequent open-ended and structured writing experiences, and specific attention to syntactical structures, usage, and mechanics further the development of composing and language skills.

English 11 American Literature

The English 11 program builds on the awareness of the diversity of cultures and literature begun in Grade 10. This course provides a balanced program of reading, writing, speaking, listening, grammar, usage, and mechanics skill development within the context of an expanded and updated canon of American literature reflecting the cultural and ethnic mosaic of American society. The themes and issues studied make direct connections to the Grade 11 American history course.

AP English Language and Composition (11)

AP English 11 incorporates opportunities for AP English Language and Composition preparation into a rigorous English 11 program that integrates composing, interpreting, and language experiences growing out of a largely chronological study of American literature. There are opportunities for critical and analytical examination of nonfiction, rhetorical and stylistic analysis, the study of argumentation, and language study in relation to the developing American English and the individual writer’s style. Students complete a formal research paper on an American writer and the individual writer’s style. Since this course involves intensive preparation for the AP test in English Language and Composition, students are expected to take the AP test.

English 12

The Standard English 12 program is designed to transition students to college. It incorporates opportunities for students to focus on developing improved skills in the area of reading and writing for college-readiness. Students will write text-based responses in a variety of modes with attention to documentary analysis and argument writing. Additionally, the course is designed to assist students in test-taking skills, especially as related to the strengthening of critical reading and writing skills.

English 12 Honors

The English 12 Honors program incorporates opportunities for students to read, analyze, and write about grade-level appropriate complex literature/text that will prepare them for post-graduation academic study and work. Students will write essays in a variety of rhetorical modes with a focus on documentary analysis, research, and composing experiences that require student responses to be text-based, clear and logical, with attention to appropriate grammar usage and mechanics.

AP English Literature and Composition (12)

This course is a multi-layered study of British literature that includes an examination of the political, social, cultural, and philosophical contexts that helped shape the dominant writers of each major literary period. A unifying thread throughout is a focus on the growth and development of the English language from its Anglo-Saxon roots to our modern systems of grammar. Students compose a variety of analytical and creative pieces as they continue to develop and refine their own writing style. Since this course involves intensive preparation for the AP test in English Literature and Composition, students are expected to take the AP test.

Photojournalism GT and ADV GT (Eagle TV)

Eagle TV prepares students for the reporting and news industry through the preparation of features.  Students learn video camera skills, audio and video editing, and introduces students to the roles of television production.  Students may begin to enroll in Eagle TV during their sophomore year.

Journalism I-IV

Journalism I: Journalism I prepares students with the fundamentals for writing, producing, and editing school newspapers.

Journalism II: This advanced course provides the production staff for the local school newspaper. Skills developed in Journalism are applied to all levels of newspaper preparation and distribution.

Journalism III: For this course, students must accept major leadership responsibility, usually as an editor, for the school paper. This group must meet with the Journalism II production staff at least three periods a week.

Journalism IV: In this course, students continue to refine newspaper skills of writing, layout, and management in an editorial or management position.

Yearbook I-III

Yearbook I: Yearbook I develops the skills necessary to produce the school yearbook; copy writing, photography, layout, budgeting, promotion, and art design are addressed.

Yearbook II: In this course, the student continues to apply yearbook skills, extend areas of expertise, and assume more responsibility, usually in an editorial or management position, in the production of the school yearbook.

Yearbook III: In this course, the student continues to apply yearbook skills, extend areas of expertise, and assume more responsibility in an editorial or management position in the production of the school yearbook.

Theatre Arts I-III

Theatre Arts I: This course develops an understanding of theatre arts, including activities for voice and body. It includes an introduction to aspects of the visual theatre (scenery, lighting, costumes, and make-up).

Theatre Arts II: In addition to a more refined approach to creative drama and technical theatre, this course includes script interpretation, character development, and scenic design.

Theatre Arts III: This course is directed to students having special aptitude for theatre. In addition to in-class course work, students will be responsible for independent projects from such areas as creative drama for children, reader’s theatre, puppet theatre, and design and production.

Film Appreciation

This elective is open to students in Grades 10-12. It offers students the opportunity to engage critically with visual text by addressing cinematic reading strategies and textual analysis.

Creative Writing

This course introduces all aspects of creative writing, including poems, short stories, short plays, and essays.

Course descriptions provided by the Baltimore County Public Schools Course Catalog 2017-2018