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English 3: American Literature & Writing

Master Teacher: Jackie Horton
Duration: Yearlong course offered in fall/spring (32 weeks).
Suggested High School Credit Value: 1 credit.
Suggested Grade Level: 11th grade level and up.
Tuition: $629 for HSLDA Members / $699 for non-members

Description: English 3: American Literature & Writing spans the entirety of American history, beginning in the 1700s and concluding in the 21st century. This course explores many themes and ideas found in American literature—i.e., the pathos of the human spirit, the possibility for positive change, and the importance of being good stewards of freedom—but ultimately prods students to ask two essential questions: “What has it meant to be an American? What does it mean to be one now?” Students read literature in conversation with expository texts (historical documents, speeches, etc.), which allows them to better understand the historical and social implications of individual literary works. They are challenged to consider every text and historical event through a biblical perspective; by the course’s conclusion, they should feel more comfortable applying a Christian worldview to all their studies. English 3 stresses fine-tuning rhetorical skills over basic grammar and mechanics. There is particular emphasis on proper MLA formatting, something that will be essential for college-level writing. 

Watch a sample clip of an Academy live class session. 

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Live Online Class Session Schedule

Dates: August 19, 2024 - May 2, 2025

Class Section

Weekly Meeting Time


Section 1: Wednesdays, 1:00–2:30 p.m. Eastern

Mrs. Jackie Horton

Section 2: Thursdays, 1:00–2:30 p.m. Eastern

Mrs. Jackie Horton

Section 3:

Mondays, 3:00–4:30 p.m. Eastern

Mrs. Courtney Johnson

Section 4:


Additional class times may be added to the schedule later in the registration period. Please note: all class times are subject to the availability of each individual instructor. See this page for more information. If you have questions, please call 540-338-8290 or email academy@hslda.org.

Frequently Asked Questions

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  • Students Will Learn

    • How to read and analyze various American texts and determine the meaning, purpose, and effect of each text 
    • How to situate American literature within American history, and understand the latter’s effect on both fiction and nonfiction 
    • How to understand the American social milieu surrounding a literary work, and how to grapple with the text’s social implications 
    • How to thoughtfully participate in the “great conversation” of America’s melting pot and be an ambassador for peace and godly values 
    • How to interpret an author’s worldview and the effect it had on American identity and culture 
    • How to evaluate the literary and rhetorical devices used in poetry, drama, fiction, and nonfiction 
    • How to write clear and effective essays while utilizing MLA formatting and academic diction 
  • How much homework is in English 3?

    We estimate that the course workload will take 5–7 hours per week. During a typical week in this course, students will complete the following coursework:

    • 60–90 minutes of live class instruction
    • 40–50 pages of reading and periodic homework assignments
    • Literature quiz
    • Grammar or vocabulary quiz
    • Discussion forum posts every few weeks

    Throughout the year, students complete 3 novels, 2 novellas, selections from an anthology of short stories, poems, essays, and speeches, 8 exams, 15 biweekly grammar and vocabulary quizzes, 4 short story quizzes, a multi-media project, 2 2-3 page papers, and one 4-6 page paper. Writing projects are scaffolded and include analytical, argumentative, and reflective essays, as well as more creative compositions such as short story and poetry writing. 

  • What books will I use in English 3?

    The official booklist for English 3: American Literature & Writing is available now. In the official booklist, you will find information about the editions, book descriptions, and ISBN numbers.

    You can order course materials for competitive prices through the Christianbook.com bookstore. Use the Textbook Finder to locate the required resources for your courses. Please note that while most books are available through Christianbook.com, some titles are not carried and will need to be purchased elsewhere.

  • Prerequisites

    Students should be able to read and write at an 11th grade level. They must be self-motivated and have prior knowledge of evidence-based essay writing, proper essay structure, and literary analysis to be successful in the course. Some concepts encountered through the literature and discussions will require students to evaluate new and controversial ideas, and they are expected to approach every topic with maturity. 

  • What is a Live Online Class Session in English 3?

    In every HSLDA Academy course, students meet weekly with their instructor and classmates in an online classroom for additional teaching, discussion, Q&A, or group activities. The class sessions are interactive and are conducted using a web meeting software with video, audio, chat, and application sharing capabilities.

    Scheduled, real-time sessions in the online classroom are not the only form of instruction available in a HSLDA Online Academy course, but are offered in addition to lectures or other instructional materials that students are able to access online at their convenience.

    When they register, students will need to select a particular class section and live class meeting time. Additional class sections may be added to the schedule at a later point in the course registration period. Registered students will be notified of any changes to the live session schedule.

  • What if I have a schedule conflict with listed English 3 class times?

    All live class sessions are recorded for later viewing. While it is recommended that students attend each live class session, students can make arrangements to watch the recordings and receive full participation credit.

    Students should contact their instructor at the start of their course to inform the instructor of any foreseen schedule conflicts.