Language Arts & Reading Syllabus

Mrs. Lancy - Room 218

Contact Mrs. Lancy

The best way to contact Mrs. Lancy is through email or by sending a direct message through Edmodo.


Grades are posted to Jupitergrades.com

Welcome to a new school year!

This new school year will be exciting, challenging and fun! We will be reading, writing and thinking on a whole new level. It won't always be easy, but it will always be worth the effort! My expectation is that all students try. Nothing great was ever achieved without taking a risk, even if it felt uncomfortable or difficult at first. I will never ask students to do something that is impossible or out of their reach.

I look forward to many exciting learning adventures with you!

Supplies for Success

○ Binder with 5 dividers (2” recommended)

○ Writer's Notebook (composition notebook - 100+ pages)

○ A book to read

○ Blue or black ink pens

○ Pencils, manual sharpener, and eraser

○ Highlighters

○ Lined filler paper

Course Description

This class is a 90-minute block that is considered both Language Arts and Reading (students receive separate grades for each). Our Language Arts focus includes communicating through verbal and written expression, and our Reading focus builds specific skills related to comprehension of grade-level texts.


This class is structured to enhance your writing abilities, both in expository and persuasive formats, as well as further your study of literature and continue the development of your critical thinking skills. We will work on strengthening your grammar, building solid sentence structure, and producing well-crafted essays. Although technology is limited within our classroom walls, there will be many opportunities for you to practice digital citizenship and grow in media literacy.

Rules & Expectations

All of Imagine South Lake rules apply in my classroom, and can be found in the front of the student agendas or online at the Lake County School Board website. Please review this information and returned the signed form to your homeroom teacher. This include uniform our requirements and the school-wide eReader policy.


Curriculum Overview

This year, our school is continuing our transition to the Common Core State Standards. More information about the English Language Arts standards is available here: http://www.corestandards.org/ELA-Literacy


Students will be expected to write daily, varying from short summaries that answer daily focus questions, to longer essays that require multiple drafts. Journal Entries will be in their Writer’s Notebooks which are graded bi-weekly. Although students will be given time to complete the work in class, anything not done should be considered homework. Homework may include independent reading, preparation for a class discussion, writing assignments, work not completed in class, and other worksheets. Students should be writing down important due dates in their agendas!

Syllabus Overview

Unit 1: Communicating to Learn from Others (August - September)

  • Novel: The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton (Required student purchase)
  • Essential skills focus on literary analysis, narratives and expository writing
  • The first unit of the year reviews the elements of literature and close reading skills, as well as establishing expectations for a strong foundation for writing for the rest of the school year.


Unit 2: Communicating with the Power to Influence (September - December)

  • The Giver by Lois Lowry & other dystopian literature (class set / literature circle books provided)
  • Essential skills focus on non-fiction, persuasive writing, media literacy
  • Shifting from the fundamental elements of story and literature, this unit explores non-fiction text (both print and digital). Students will learn about what makes a persuasive essay different from an expository, and will be engaged with a media literacy aspect that helps to build critical thinking skills about the persuasive techniques used by advertisers. Then, a dystopian literature focus examines how persuasive techniques are used in dystopian societies to influence the main characters.


Unit 3: Communicating to Understand our World (January-March)
  • Code Talker by Joseph Bruchac (Required student purchase)
  • Essential skills focus on historical fiction, writing a literary analysis (expository) essay
  • One of the most important skills for students in high school and beyond is the ability to write an in-depth literary analysis. Based on a historical fiction novel that provides meaningful content, this novel study is rich with writing instruction for formal essays.



Unit 4: Communicating to Connect & Create (April-May)

  • A Midsummer Night's Dream by William Shakespeare (Class set provided)
  • Essential skills focus on figurative language, poetry and drama
  • In this unit, students move from in-depth analysis to understanding creative techniques used in poetry and drama.

Missing & Late Work Policy

If students are absent from school, they will receive an extra day (for each day absent) to make up missing work. However, requesting the work is the student’s responsibility. Most assignments will also be posted to Edmodo.com, along with necessary notes, handouts or other materials to complete the work.


Students who “forgot” or “lost” their work will be penalized 5% of points awarded for each day that the assignment is late. Past ten school days, only half credit will be given, but the assignment must still be submitted. In place of turning in the assignment, students will need to complete a missing work form for documentation. Students who receive a grade on an assignment lower than 60% may receive an incomplete, and are expected to make up that assignment, quiz or test in order to receive a passing grade.


Students are strongly encouraged to turn in work in on time, since assignments are often time-sensitive and begin to lose value if students put them off. (Mrs. Lancy reserves the right to make exceptions for struggling students only after a student-parent-teacher conference with an agreed-upon plan for academic improvement.)


Grading Scale

A = 90 - 100
B =
80 - 89
C =
70 - 79
D = 60 - 69
F = Below 60 is a failing grade


Technology Use

Modern technology offers students amazing new possibilities for learning. This year, students will be interacting with many types of educational technologies in the classroom as they learn to be responsible digital citizens.


TypingWeb.com: This year's state testing requires students to type responses as well as select multiple choice answers. To ensure that students have a basic proficiency with using a keyboard, each student will be given a free account at TypingWeb.com to practice this skill. Students will be given class credit for completing the online courses.


Edmodo.com: Students are required by Mrs. Lancy to create a free account at Edmodo.com, which is a free educational networking platform. It is closely monitored by teachers and is for academic purposes. Parents may create a free account as well using a unique code (available after a student creates an account). Students and parents can access Edmodo for announcements, copies of notes from class, PowerPoint presentations, and other important documents. More information will be given to students in class on how to access the site. (Grades will still be posted to jupitergrades.com)


eReader policy: Students are permitted to use eReaders in class in lieu of a print copy of a book, or for independent reading, only if they have returned a signed permission form. Under no circumstances should students be accessing the Internet or using the eReader for any other purpose than reading. Our current Internet bandwidth is not capable of supporting student devices and will reduce the effectiveness of educational technology being used in the classroom. Cooperation with this new policy will allow us to pursue other ways of implementing BYOD ("bring your own device") at Imagine South Lake! Although many smartphones have reading apps, this policy only includes actual eReader tablets.


Cell phone policy: Students are permitted to carry cell phones for security purposes, however, devices should be turned off during school hours. If students are caught using their devices without explicit teacher permission, it will be confiscated until the end of the school day. After multiple incidents, parents will be notified and will be required to come to the school to pick up the device. The purpose of this policy is to maintain academic integrity.

Edmodo at a glance