Grade 9 English: Unit One – Literacy Skills

This introductory unit focuses on establishing a strong foundation for the further development of underlying literacy skills. Students enter grade 9 from a number of different pathways. Some students come in with a strong understanding of how to infer and connect, while others have never been introduced to those concepts in a formal setting.

This unit focuses on guiding students towards writing strong paragraphs using the Point, Evidence, Evaluation method to express their understanding. Additionally, it teaches how to use embedded quotations as textual support that is integrated within the students’ own sentences.

Finally, this unit culminates with students bringing all their skills together to create a strong media piece, using their oral communication skills to explain their process and end-results to their peers.


The English Course Pack

This unit is part of the Full English Course Pack that contains every assignment, slide deck, assessment, worksheet, and evaluation required to run a complete high school English class. As always, these resources are free for non-commercial public school use.

If you would like to say thanks, consider buying me a coffee. But that is neither required, nor expected.

Unit One: Literacy Skills

1.01: The Nametag Assignment

  • Introduces communication skills
  • Explores symbolic representation
  • Creates a strong media piece

1.02: Alligator River

  • Demonstrations the importance of groupwork
  • Introduces bias
  • Begins class discussions

1.03: Embedding Quotations: Slide Deck

  • Formally addresses PEE Paragraphs
  • Explores how to embed quotations
  • Explains how to modify quotations with brackets and ellipses

1.04: The Drawbridge PEE

  • Formally evaluates student’s reading / writing skills
  • Creates a short paragraph using embedded quotations for support

1.05: Drawbridge: Character Monologues

  • Builds upon a familiar text
  • Creates a short video piece
  • Explores monologues

1.06: Inferring: Slide Deck

  • Explicitly teaches the literacy skill Inferring
  • Provides opportunity for demonstration of skill

1.07: They’re Made out of Meat

  • Allows students to further demonstrate their understanding of Inferring, analyzing a short story
  • Provides an opportunity for the creation of a media text

1.08: Questioning: Slide Deck

  • Explicitly teaches the literacy skills Questioning
  • Provides students with an opportunity to demonstrate their understanding of Questioning

1.09: Taylor Swift

  • Presents students with a Short Story to use as the basis for their understanding of questioning
  • Explicitly introduces digital annotations

1.10: Determining Important & Summarizing: Slide Deck

  • Explicitly teaches the literacy skill Determining Importance
  • Explicitly teaches the literacy skills Summarizing
  • Provides students with an opportunity to demonstrate their understanding of the new literacy skills

1.11: Connecting: Slide Deck

  • Explicitly teaches the literacy skills Connecting
  • Provides students with an opportunity to demonstrate their understanding of Connecting

1.12: The Swan as a Metaphor for Love

  • Presents students with a short story that introduces the concept of extended metaphors
  • Reinforces digital annotation skills
  • Provides a platform to demonstrate Determining Importance, Summarizing, and Connecting

1.13: Topic Journals

  • Introduces the ongoing task: Topic Journals
  • Presents students with an in-class writing assignment

1.14: Teaching The Media Triangle

  • Introduces “The Medium is the Message”
  • Presents the Media Triangle as a tool for textual analysis
  • Provides an opportunity to reinforce PEE writing
  • Demonstrates how PEE can be demonstrated through multi-paragraphed written pieces

1.15: Movie Posters: Slide Deck

  • Provides opportunity for informal, targeted discussions
  • Further explores media analysis
  • Scaffolds skills for media creation

1.16: The Movie Poster Assignment

  • Presents students with a release of responsibility
  • Provides options for students to self-select how to best approach an evaluative task
  • Provides a project-based task to create and explain the choices behind a self-created movie poster

1.17: RICH Reading Log

  • Introduces the ongoing task: RICH Reading Log
  • Presents students with an in-class writing assignment that honours their Personal Choice Reading

English Course Packs: Full Units

Unit One: Literacy Skills
Unit Two: Poetry
Unit Three: Literature Circles (In Progress)
Unit Four: Creative Writing & Choose Our Way Tales (In Progress)
Unit Five: Essay Writing (In Progress)
Unit Six: Culminating Tasks (In Progress)

Written by…

Michael Barltrop has been teaching since 2006, integrating comics, video games, and TTRPGs into his classroom. He has been the head of English, Literacy, Special Education, and Assessment & Evaluation and Universal Design. Feel free to reach out through Twitter @MrBarltrop!

Feel free to support the website hosting by buying him a coffee or sharing this post on facebook, twitter, or whatever social media is trending these days.

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