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English Language Arts (ELA)

Deer Park High School's English Electives


Creative WritingLove to express yourself in writing? Then, this course if for you. You will produce your own original works such as short stories, sketches, poetry, skits, and essays and examine the literary works of various authors. The focus will extensive in self-expression. 


Introduction to Speech and Dramatics Arts / College Dramatic Arts: Speech and Dramatic Arts is a course that is collaborative and performance based. Students will study and participate in performances that will include but are not limited to: improvisation, character development, monologues, dialogues, One Act plays, excerpts from full length plays, Shakespeare plays, poetry, sonnets, historical speeches, and other literary works. Students will perform individually as well as in small and large groups.

Although all students may enroll, students with middle school drama experience and /or an interest in pursuing the performing arts in high school, or who wish to develop their confidence with public speaking and performing should register. Students are encouraged to audition and participate in the DPHS performing arts program. (Fall One Act Festival, Winter Play, Musical, Poetry Contest, Shakespeare Festival).


Note: The second semester college course is offered for credit through Five Towns College. In addition to the performance projects, this course incorporates a writing component including theater performance reviews, literary analysis, short reflection papers, and written unit tests.


Introduction to Entrance Exams (JUNIORS ONLY)

Students will be taught effective and efficient study skills as well as strategies to successfully master analyzing vocabulary in context, command of evidence, constructing logical arguments and scientific reasoning. Students will be exposed to exam questions from both the SAT and ACT Exams.


Philosophy I and Philosophy II:

Do you often ponder life’s mysteries?  Have you been accused of “thinking too much” or “asking too many questions”? Have you ever delighted your friends and family members with your deep and soulful thinking?  
Well, if so… You, young philosopher, should consider taking Philosophy I and II!

These courses were designed to allow you - the thinker, the professor of unique ideas- to explore concepts such as: life and death, religion, relationships, the origins of souls, free thinking, cosmogony (the birth of the universe), and other interesting topics that intrigue curious minds.

Your classroom experiences will include collaborative and reflective activities, such as: invigorating class discussions, rigorous debates and fishbowls, and creative writing opportunities.  You will be given many chances to foster and share your talents, while investigating ancient and modern texts.

Behold, Young Philosopher!  An educational adventure unlike any other awaits you!  Sign up for Philosophy I and II.


Public Speaking

Do you have anxiety about presenting in front of class? When you speak is the only thing that 
seems to come out are "like," "umm," "so"? Then, Public Speaking is the course for you. In this class, students will actively participate in creating a positive and encouraging environment.  This course will serve to make each student aware of his/her personal speech habits and characteristics, to increase each student’s confidence, to develop speech preparation and presentation techniques, and to increase both audience and self-awareness.


Social Issues in Literature:

Literature is packed with the issues we face in society on a daily basis. You will study literature, film, media, and presentations that address issues such as addiction, prejudice, racism, women's issues, and violence. You will analyze the relationship between the work an the social issue presented as well as assess your own position in society.



For some students, the writing life begins with the music life.  In Songwriting, we practice the art and craft of creating song structures and lyrics, and apply many creative writing techniques along the way. We analyze current and past songs to see what inspiration and illustration they can give us, and we share and celebrate our creations in a supportive and safe environment.