English Language Arts Curriculum Standards

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The vision statement for Catholic schools of the Archdiocese of Hartford asserts that “Catholic schools educate diverse student bodies to form Catholic, person-centered learning communities; provide quality teaching through traditional and innovative educational programs infused with Catholic social teachings; involve students to serve and support parish life and the local civic communities; graduate students who are critical thinkers, productive moral citizens, and spiritual leaders; and recognize and appreciate parents as the primary educators of their children.” Language arts is a critical curriculum area in the fulfillment of that vision. Through the study of language arts, our students develop the intellectual, social, moral, and spiritual qualities necessary to serve their parish and civic communities, to think critically, to be productive, to grow spiritually and to make moral decisions.

Language facilitates learning, since all knowledge is conveyed through the written or spoken word. Development of communication skills prepares students for lifelong learning. In the knowledge explosion of the Information Age, the 21st century, students need basic language skills to access and understand information, evaluate its quality, collaborate, and convey ideas to others. Thus, language arts provides the building blocks for all learning, both in school and throughout life.

In addition to their intellectual value, language arts conveys social benefits. In a rapidly shrinking world, communication skills enable us to interact peaceably and effectively with others in a spirit of understanding, to resist influences of malevolent propaganda, and to be powerful forces in persuading others to ethical, moral decisions.

Through literature, we learn to bridge the gaps that separate us from others. The study of literature enables us to see the universality in human experience within the diversity of its many cultures. Literature enriches and extends our experiences beyond the limits of time and place, and thus helps us to create a peaceful life in a global village.

Of greatest importance are the moral and spiritual benefits that accrue from the study of language arts. By providing an opportunity to investigate moral choices and their consequences, literature aids in forming a right conscience. Language is one of the noblest expressions of our creativity, and the means by which we communicate with our Creator through prayer and spiritual reading.

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