Grade: 99.57% A
For English II, I used part of the Calvert curriculum and supplemented it with my own writing assignments to make it more demanding.
I liked that Calvert allows me to, with my mother and advisor’s approval, swap out certain reading and assignments for work that will challenge me more. I also like that it is very thorough, with plenty of tests and quizzes to ensure you are grasping the concepts.
But what I didn’t like about Calvert is the lack of opportunity to improve my writing abilities in this course, which is why I did additional writing and also sought out another English credit this year with my English Composition and Research course.
The English II Calvert curriculum covered concepts like setting and culture, theme, narrative structure, symbolism and motif, imagery, diction and tone, similes, metaphors, and personification. Had enough yet? But wait! There’s more… including free verse, enjambment, satire and tercets, allusions, irony and foreshadowing, rhetoric and logic, allegories, and figurative language.
I enjoyed their study of Animal Farm – a book I loved. But I will admit, I would have enjoyed it a lot more if I had been reading it just for “fun.” Calvert tends to present readings in a very dry manner.
I received an A for my Calvert tests and quizzes.
As a prolific writer and reader, it’s difficult to find an English course that satisfies me. So aside from my Calvert assignments, I sought out some other readings in different genres. This included The Girl in the Blue Coat which is historic fiction – a genre I feel is often overlooked as a valid way of getting kids engaged in the topic of history. I wrote about this book here and also published the article in a local magazine.
After diving into Animal Farm with my Calvert curriculum, I decided to delve deeper into this genre with Fahrenheit 451 and wrote an article about that as well which was also published in a local magazine.
These books got me interested in dystopian literature and how they have changed (and not changed) over the decades. So I am already putting together a comparative literature curriculum for my senior year where I can compare dystopian classics with more modern examples.
Overall, I received an A which includes my Calvert work, and additional writing graded by my mom – a professional writer herself – and by the editor of the local magazine I write for, who also gave me a letter of recommendation after writing for them for a full year.