Portland Public Schools
Portland, Oregon

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An Accelerated Program
for Highly Gifted Students

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7 Language Arts Syllabus

Syllabus for English 7

Course Reference Number: 7100-01

Course Title: English 7

Course Description:

The Language Arts course integrates reading, writing, speaking, and listening and its goal is to produce strategic, fluent, and effective readers, writers, speakers, and listeners.


  • read a variety of literary and informational text, and receive instruction in reading skills and strategies that support comprehension.
  • develop skill in conventions, grammar and spelling and in the effective use of the multiple-step writing process to create writing pieces in the expository, persuasive, narrative and imaginative modes.
  • practice speaking and listening skills by writing and performing both formal and informal speeches and by interacting in a variety of group settings.

Priority Standards:




Clarify word meanings through use of definition, inference, example, restatement, or contrast. (7.3.6)


Locate and use consumer product information.  (7.4.5)


Draw inferences and make logical conclusions. (7.6.2) (7.7.6) (7.9.3)


Identify and trace the development of an author’s argument, point of view, or perspective. (7.6.6)


Analyze a variety of text to determine the type and purpose of the organizational structure being used. (7.7.3)


Identify and analyze the development of themes in and across literary works. (7.9.4) (7.10.11)


Identify events that advance the plot and determine how each event explains past or present action(s) or foreshadows future action(s).  (7.9.8.)


Evaluate how well literary elements are used to establish mood, place, time period, and cultures, and contribute to the overall effectiveness of a selection and the development of its theme. (7.10.8)


Analyze how dialogue is used to develop characters and mood in a selection. (7.10.13)




Adequately explore a topic and develop a thesis, providing connections and insights. (7.12.1 – I&C)


Engage readers with an interesting introduction and offer a concluding, or ending, paragraph. (7.12.2 – O)


Use similarity and difference.  (7.12.2 – O)


Provide transitions to link paragraphs. (7.12.2 – O)


Support a position with detailed evidence, examples, and clear reasoning. (7.13.1 – P)


Write explanations, procedures or directions that use personal, factual knowledge supported by details in a logical sequence.   (7.13.2 – E)


Write summaries that reflect underlying meaning, not just the superficial details. (7.13.3 – E)


Develop a thesis that conveys a perspective on the topic. (7.13.4 – E)


Document sources using appropriate citation format. (7.13.4 – E)


Organize interpretations around several clear ideas, premises, or images from the literary work. (7.13.5 – LA)


Include sensory details and clear language to develop plot and character.  (7.13.6 – N)


Exclude extraneous details and inconsistencies. (7.13.6 –N)


Use correctly the English language conventions – spelling, grammar and punctuation:  ( ( (

Spell correctly roots and bases, prefixes and suffixes, inflectional endings;

Use correctly modifiers, definite and indefinite pronouns; verb tenses, ensure verb agreement;

Use correctly quotation marks around speaker’s words, commas and periods inside quotation marks, question marks or exclamation points inside or outside quotation marks;

Make paragraph breaks when using dialogue.




Engage the audience with appropriate verbal cues, facial expressions, gestures, and eye contact. (7.14.4)


Actively solicit another person’s comment or opinion. (7.16.2)


Make informed judgments about TV, radio and film. (7.18.3)


Schedule of Topics/Units Covered:


Unit 1 – Embracing Heritage

Unit 4 – Writing for the State Test

Unit 2 – Chills and Thrills

Unit 5 – Telling It As It Is:  Nonfiction

Unit 3 – Perseverance

Unit 6 – Words In Motion: Poetry

Unit 7: Turning Words into Action:  Drama

Other Activities/Assignments: novel study, literature circles, writing workshop, dialogue journals, reading response, graphic organizers, dramatic readings, and word study.

 Academic/Content Vocabulary:

Author’s argument

Citation format


Consumer product




Informed judgments

Literary elements




Plot advancement Premise


Sensory details


Superficial details



Transition words

Verb agreement

Adopted Core Materials:

Grade 7 – Exploring Literature
EMC/Paradigm, Masterpiece Series:  Literature and the Language Arts (2005)

Supplemental Resources:

District created curriculum packets, Multi-media, mentor text, Novels Informational texts (newspapers, magazines), and Teacher created materials.

Differentiation/Accessibility Strategies

Teachers can differentiate content, process, and product according to the student’s readiness, interests, and learning profile through a range of strategies.  Pre-assessment and ongoing assessments of students are essential for successful differentiation.

·    Curriculum compacting

·    Flexible grouping

·    Depth and Complexity extensions

·    Pre-instruction assessment

Assessment/evaluation/grading policy

Students will be graded on the following:

1.      Homework

2.      Projects

3.      Tests/quizzes

4.      In class participation and discussion

5.      Warm-ups 

Grading Policy: A student’s grade is determined by his or her points earned.
90-100% A
80-89% B
70-79% C
60-69% D


·    Read a variety of informational and narrative text at an independent level appropriate to grade level.  7th Grade = 875,000 words

·    Meet or exceed grade level standard on OAKS Reading/Literature test


·    Maintain a writing journal and word study notebook with quick writes, reading responses, notes, and vocabulary words.

·    Participate in daily guided and independent writing assignments.

·    Write a response to literary text with a focus on the character’s motivation to change that scores a 4 or higher on the ODE Scoring Guide (Common Assignment)

·    Meet or exceed grade level standard on OAKS Writing test and Classroom Writing Work Sample


Meet or exceed grade level standard on Classroom Speaking Work Sample (Informational or Persuasive).

Rules: Every student is entitled to a classroom environment that is safe, conducive to learning, and free from unnecessary disruptions.  Each student is responsible for being respectful to all members of the classroom, including the teacher. 

  • Be Respectful
  • Be Responsible

  • Be Safe
CONSEQUENCES: In the event that a student's absences, tardiness, or behavior become a problem the following consequences will be implemented:
1. Individual conference with the student
2. call the student's parent or guardian
3. refer the student to the appropriate administrator or counselor