Within the last two decades, English language arts educators have expanded the understanding of English language arts instruction. At all grades, the focus is on acquiring language and literacy skills through listening, speaking, viewing, and representing, as well as reading and writing. In keeping with the literacy demands placed on them, students now learn to read and produce a wide range of texts, including media, transactional, and literary texts.
This transformation of ELA was prompted by social and technological change and by new research in learning and teaching language arts. It parallels a general shift in learner-centred classrooms, with instruction built around learning outcomes that students will demonstrate rather than goals and objectives.
Manitoba Education's Lead the Way With ELA: A Parent Report on What's NEW in English Language Arts (1999) highlights some features of Manitoba's new English language arts curriculum frameworks and describes many ways parents can help their child learn and use language in the home.
Helping Your Child Learn to Read: A Parent's Guide
This parent guide presents information about the reading process and describes strategies to assist parents in reading aloud and shared reading at home.
The Manitoba Curriculum Framework of Outcomes and Standards documents identify the prescribed general and specific English language arts learning outcomes for students in Manitoba:
General Learning Outcomes describe the knowledge, skills, and attitudes that students are expected to demonstrate from Kindergarten to Grade 12.
Specific Learning Outcomes identify the component knowledge, skills, and attitudes that contribute to the general learning outcomes that students are expected to demonstrate by the end of a grade.
In the English language arts curricula, as in all new curricula developed for Manitoba schools, the student learning outcomes integrate the four foundational skill areas identified in A Foundation for Excellence, 1995: literacy and communication, problem solving, human relations, and technology.
English Language Arts curricula for Kindergarten to Grade 12 have been developed and implemented.
The English Language Arts: Manitoba Curriculum Framework of Outcomes and Standards specifies learning outcomes for three Senior 3 courses:
Schools are not required to offer all three courses at the Grade 11 level. To meet compulsory core English language arts graduation requirements, each student must complete one of the three Grade 11 English Language Arts courses. Any one of the three Grade 11 English Language Arts courses fulfills the prerequisite for a student's selection of a Grade 12 compulsory core English language arts course.
New English Language Arts curricula have been developed for four Grade 12 courses:
|Compulsory Core Courses||Optional Supplementary Courses|
|Grade 12 English Language Arts: Comprehensive Focus (40S)||Grade 12 English Language Arts: Language and Technical Communication (40S)|
|Grade 12 English Language Arts: Literary Focus (40S)|
|Grade 12 English Language Arts: Transactional Focus (40S)|
Students are required to complete any one of the three Compulsory Core Courses to satisfy compulsory core graduation requirements. (They may hold credit for all three). Manitoba Education will not limit students' selection of Grade 12 English Language Arts courses based on the Grade 11 English language arts courses they complete.
Schools may also continue to implement existing curricula for the following optional courses: Grade 12 English Language Arts: Language and Literary Forms (40S) and Grade 12 English Language Arts: Language and Transactional Forms (40S). Grade 12 English Language Arts: Language and Technical Communication (40S) was revised and implemented system-wide in the 2001-2002 school year.
Grade 12 English Language Arts: Language and Technical Communication (40S) may be used to meet Grade 12 English language arts compulsory graduation requirements for students meeting graduation requirements within the Senior Years Technology Education Program or for students completing a Mature Student Diploma.
Manitoba Education communicates with post-secondary institutions to ensure acceptance of English language arts credits for admission into university and community college programs.
It is important, however, that Senior Years students planning studies beyond Grade 12 contact post-secondary institutions directly to confirm requirements for general admission and/or entrance to specific faculties/programs/courses.
For current information on post-secondary acceptance of English language arts curricula refer to Summary of Post-Secondary Acceptance of English Language Arts Curricula (Updated November 2009).