This is our most elementary literary analysis course. The goal of this class is to expose students to the basic, core concepts of literature, as well as “introduce” them to a formal writing program. All students will learn how to look for key literary concepts, discuss what they have read together in class, and apply what they have learned in their individual writing assignments.

Course Instruction Includes:


An in-depth look at a classic novel

Students will be reading one chapter book in-depth throughout the course of this class.

Literary Analysis through novel annotation

At an early age, students learn to look for key elements in the novel as they begin learning how to annotate/reflect and write in the text and margins. Specific instruction and modeling will be provided to help students learn how to reflect as they read. Each students will receive his or her own book, and will be expected to annotate/write in the book throughout the course of the class. This skill teaches students how to read with a very engaged mind, which will eventually allow them to develop skills necessary for analysis in their reading and writing.

Literary Analysis through literary terms

At this level, students learn basic literary terms such as plot, character, setting, conflict, and theme. Depending upon the novel being studied, teachers will ask students to not only engage in discussion about these terms, but they will also be asked to “chart” some of this information. They may chart the changes in a character or the descriptions of a character. They may be asked to make a list of new vocabulary words or strong action verbs. There are endless ways that teachers will find to engage your child’s mind to develop critical thinking while studying their novel.

 Literary Analysis through writing

At this level, students will typically have a weekly paragraph writing assignment. The writing prompt will be relevant to an aspect of the novel they are reading, allowing students to practice developing critical thinking skills. Students will not be writing lengthy compositions, but they will have very specific instructions to follow regarding the content and structure of their composition. While there will be opportunities for some fun and creative writing, the weekly writing, when practiced correctly, will help students begin to establish effective habits that will result in well organized compositions that are relevant to the novel they are reading.

Focused writing instruction

The Introduction to Writing class focuses on the basic format of a paragraph. The emphasis is on mastery or quality, instead of quantity. Students will be introduced to:

  • Learning the four basic steps to writing: brainstorming, outlining, rough drafts, and the final draft

  • Writing grammatically correct, engaging sentences which include simple stylistic elements

  • Formulating an engaging topic sentence and conclusion

  • Providing supporting details which support the topic sentence

  • Understanding basic grammar concepts: subject, predicate, independent clause, compound sentence, basic parts of speech

 A creative enrichment project

Since we have the benefit of studying one book for 12 weeks, we are able to create a unit study based on the book. This means that students “experience” the book”; they don’t simply “read” it. Throughout the course of the class, approximately 3-4 weeks will be spent exploring various subjects related to the book. During the final class session, students will have the opportunity to present either a creative writing project or a research paper on a topic related to the novel. The project includes three components: a written composition, an oral presentation, and a visual aid. Students, parents, and family members are welcomed members of the audience for this final presentation.

Necessary skills for students in the Introduction to Writing class:

  • Reads chapter books somewhat independently

  • Articulates thoughts verbally

  • Able to write a short paragraph somewhat independently

  • Willing to be gently challenged as a student

  • Able to complete 2-3 hours of homework weekly

**For specific class dates, times, and locations, see our Locations menu item at the top of the page.