7th Grade


7th graders enter the school building through the 63rd Drive entrance.

7th Grade ELA Pacing Calendar

Unit 1: Journeys & Survival

Novel: A Long Walk to Water by Linda Sue Park
Initially, students will explore the question: “How do culture, time, and place influence the development of identity?” Through a study of the development of character in the novel A Long Walk to Water, students will immerse themselves in the experiences of the people of Southern Sudan during the Sudanese Civil War. Students will create an advice column in a question-answer format in which they identify a character’s dilemma from A Long Walk to Water and give realistic, thoughtful suggestions on how the character should overcome his or her dilemma.
In the second part of the unit, students are introduced to the concept of theme in a novel. As they complete A Long Walk to Water, students will continue to collect textual evidence to answer the question “How do individuals survive in challenging environments?” In addition, students will be reading informational texts that provide more information about the context of the novel. Finally, students will be, utilizing textual evidence from the novel and from informational texts to write a thematic essay in which the students prove the presence of a chosen theme in both characters’ sections of the novel and the history of Sudan.

Unit 2: Identity

Texts: Various short stories and informational texts
In this unit, students will inquire into how individuals define themselves. They will closely read several short stories about identity and several informational articles relating to identity development in modern society. They will also examine the ideas that identity is a multifaceted concept and that identity can change over time. As a culminating task, students will write an argumentative essay in which they make a claim about personal identity construction.

Unit 3: Literary Analysis

Students will analyze and determine the meaning of words and phrases within the New York State 2014 7th Grade ELA Examination. They will “break-down” the multiple-choice, short-response, and the extended-response questions to further enhance their understanding of the questions. In addition, students will identify the skills within the questions and find that the multiple-choice, short-response, and extended-response questions require of them to perform more than one skill in order to fully understand how to “tackle” the question. Students will analyze informational and literary texts in order to respond to the various skills asked within all of the questions.

Unit 4: Slavery

Text: The Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass by Frederick Douglass
In the beginning of the unit, students will question: “What gives stories and poems their enduring power?” They will read various historical texts that will provide background knowledge about this time in our nation’s history. They will also analyze the elements of storytelling. In the next section of the unit, students will begin reading excerpts of The Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass. They will use this text to analyze how Douglass’s story was shaped by his purpose and audience. Simultaneously, students will read independent reading books that are biographies or autobiographies of historical figures. They will use the information gathered as they read to develop a narrative piece that analyzes how a theme applies to the life of a specific historical figure. In this piece, they will pretend that they have one day to spend with the historical figure featured in their independent reading book and describe how they would spend this day together. Once students finish their study of Frederick Douglass’s autobiography, they will create a group skit in which they combine their knowledge of Frederick Douglass with each of their independently studied historical figures.