Pennsylvania Homeschoolers

AP* Online Classes

My favorite assignment in AP Psychology would definitely be the research project. We had to design our own scientific study to investigate some aspect of psychology and create, carry out, gather data, and write a scientific report about it.

Honors English Language Arts

On-Line for the 2021-2022 School Year

Teacher: Melissa Dean



This course is full. Registration for the 2022-2023 school year will open in February.


Tuition:  $675 early bird/$725 after July 1 (class size limited to 20 students)

Length of Course:  Friday, August 27, 2021 to Friday, May 13, 2022

Breaks:  The official course schedule will be in the syllabus provided at the beginning of the year but will include breaks for all major U.S. holidays and Thanksgiving, a Winter Break, and a Spring Break.


Course Description:  This course is designed to prepare high school students for AP English Language and Composition and AP English Language and Literature.  It is designated as an Honors English Course.

Course Objectives:

*Students will analyze and respond to a variety of literature including fiction and nonfiction works, drama, poetry, essays, short stories, memoir, and short novels.

*Students will critically analyze short literary pieces in order to develop critical thinking and reading skills.

*Students will recognize, use, and understand a variety of poetic devices and forms.

*Students will develop sentence maturity by imitating the sentence styles of professional writers.

*Students will master the art of thesis and essay writing.

*Students will conduct, report, and properly present research utilizing current MLA style.

*Students will develop honor-driven persuasive skills utilizing ancient rhetorical devices.

*Students will develop, revise, edit, and submit an essay for the annual Profiles in Courage essay contest.


Prerequisites:  This course is open to advanced 9th and 10th grade students as well as 11th and 12th grade students who do not wish to take AP English courses but still desire a rigorous, high school level English course.  While there are no official prerequisites for the course, students who enroll should be able to write at an advanced high school level, be able to read and comprehend high school level literature and nonfiction texts, and have a solid grasp of grammar and the conventions of Standard Written English in their writing.  This course is not intended for middle school students or students who need remedial work in reading or writing. 

Interactions:  This course is asynchronous, which means there is no live class session that students must attend.  Work will be assigned daily, and students are expected to meet due dates; however, they will be free to complete their work at any time of day as long as they meet assigned deadlines.  Extensions to deadlines will be granted with advance notice or in the case of illness or emergencies.  Students will interact with one another and with the instructor in online discussion forums and groups as well as in occasional online book club meetings.  Students will receive weekly feedback from the instructor and teaching assistants on their work as well as detailed feedback on major assignments.  The instructor will provide an individual progress report at the end of each semester. 

Workload:  Approximately 6-8 hours per week

Technological Requirements:  Students will be given access to a password-protected Canvas website where they will access all of their course materials.  Each student will need full Internet and printer access as well as Microsoft Word.  Students will need to be able to create and view PDF files and may need to utilize Skype, Zoom, or Google Hangouts for book club discussions or group projects.  Google Drive may also be utilized throughout the year, so students should have access to a drive.

Instructor Qualifications:  I graduated from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with a BA in English Education.  After teaching in a variety of public school settings, I returned to school to pursue an MA in English and Literacy Education from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor.  I then continued on to earn an Educational Specialist (Ed.S.) degree in Curriculum Development, also from U-M, and am currently a doctoral candidate in Special Education.  I am a certified teacher in the State of the Virginia with endorsements in 6-12 English, K-12 Reading, K-12 Gifted Education, and ESL.  During the past twenty-nine years, I have taught in public schools, an alternative high school, homeschool co-ops, and online.  I have also edited and occasionally written for the Virginia Home Educator, a publication of the Home Educator’s Association of Virginia (HEAV), for the past fourteen years.  I currently live in Chesapeake, Virginia with my family.


Required Course Materials:

***This is the tentative book list; minor changes may be made.  A final book list will be emailed to enrolled students in late July.***

Summer Reading: The Lively Art of Writing by Lucille Vaughan Payne (ISBN: 978-0451627124) and The Blue Book of Grammar and Punctuation, 12th Edition (ISBN: 978-1119653028)

Critical Thinking Skills: Effective Analysis, Argument and Reflection by Stella Cottrell (ISBN: 978-1137550507)

Poetry Handbook by Mary Oliver (ISBN: 978-0156724005) 

The Rent Collector by Cameron Wright (ISBN:  978-160907705)

The Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass by Frederick Douglass (ISBN: 978-0486284996)

Twelve Angry Men by Reginald Rose (ISBN: 978-0143104407) 

A Christmas Carol and Other Christmas Stories by Charles Dickens (ISBN:  978-0451532022)

Much Ado About Nothing by William Shakespeare (ISBN: 978-0743482752)

Frankenstein by Mary Shelley (ISBN: 978-0486282114)

Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury (ISBN: 978-1451673319)

Things Fall Apart by China Achebe (ISBN: 978-0385474542)

**Links or PDF files for a variety of shorter texts will be provided throughout the course as well.


Application:  If you wish to enroll in Honors English Language Arts for the 2021-2022 school year, please complete the application in the link below and email it to me at as either a Word attachment or by pasting the application into the body of your email.

Click here to open or download an application to this class (Microsoft Word document)

Click here to read class reviews from past participants
Return to the AP Online Classes Home Page