Discover the power of language.

The purpose of the English curriculum at Lincoln Academy is to develop every student’s ability to think, read, write, speak, and listen to the best of his or her ability.

Welcome to the Lincoln Academy English Department.  Students in our courses gain the knowledge and skills necessary for successful engagement in college and the workplace beyond Lincoln Academy.  We encourage each student to discover the power of language to shape ideas, to convey thoughts, to express personal insight, to persuade, to solve problems, and to make decisions. The English department treats each student individually while also encouraging effective communication in group settings. 


A core value at LA, communication is a foundational skill nurtured throughout the school, especially in the English Department.

Critical Thinking

Courses in English language and literature teach students to think critically and communicate effectively.

Core Courses, Electives, Honors, and Advanced Placement Options

The English Department serves all students at Lincoln Academy in meeting the required four years of English in order to graduate. Within each of these years, the department has core English courses that are heterogeneously grouped and focused on preparing students to meet the needs and challenges of post graduation, whether it be work or college. Having four years of English before graduation is a National requirement. There is a regular course at each level of schooling that serves to provide a solid foundation of all the aspects of English.

There are also pre-accelerated English courses freshman and sophomore years (Honors I and Honors II) that prepare students for Advanced Placement English courses junior and senior years.  There is an application process for both Honors and AP courses, and candidates who are accepted are expected to complete summer reading assignments.

Scott Petersen

Department Contacts

Bryan Manahan : English Department Head—Outing Club Co-Advisor—
Bryan Manahan

Mr. Manahan came to Lincoln Academy in 1999 from a background in experiential education particularly aboard sail training vessels on the coast of Maine.  He hoped to bring the same excitement for learning nautical science and maritime studies on the sea to the study of reading and writing in the English classroom.  When not growing with students in the classroom, his preference is still to be outside in the woods or on the water with his family and a good book.

Academic Affiliations:

B.A. English and Textual studies - Syracuse University
MAT - Ursuline College
M.Ed. Educational Policy and Management - Harvard University

Chelsea Scott : English Faculty
Chelsea Scott

Chelsea Scott found a home in teaching after prior careers in foster care case management and internet marketing. She has written freelance nonfiction for various publications, including Maine the Way Quarterly, Maine Women Magazine, and Session Magazine. Her plays have been performed on New York City stages. Chelsea is thrilled to be a member of the English faculty and residential program here at Lincoln Academy. Besides writing, Chelsea loves choral singing, running, and swimming. She lives on campus with her husband, Jonathan, two daughters, Adeline and Tallulah, and Pacha and Tanya, their extrovert / introvert cat duo.

Academic Affiliations:

M.S.Ed.- MTL Pending from University of Southern Maine Bachelors in English from CW Post College of Long Island University

Bridget Wright : English Teacher
Bridget Wright

Bridget Wright has always wanted to be an English teacher and is living the dream. She holds a Bachelor's in Secondary Education, English and a Master's in Educational Leadership, both from the University of Maine at Farmington. In addition to teaching, she is also the Civil Rights Team advisor and a dorm parent. Bridget's free time is joyfully filled with listening to fantasy audiobooks, knitting and sewing, cooking and baking, snuggling her pets, and galavanting around in search of adventure.

John Cannon : English Faculty
John Cannon

John Cannon joined LA in 2019 after being the 7th and 8th grade Reading teacher at Great Salt Bay School. For six years in the mid-90’s John worked as a screenwriter in Hollywood, where he was a member of the Screenwriters Guild and was optioned by Walt Disney to adapt the novel Jennie into a feature film. A National Board Certified teacher, John earned his BA in English Literature from the University of Illinois at Chicago. He is currently working on his Masters in Education at Orono.

Academic Affiliations:

B.A. English Literature, University of Illinois at Chicago

Brenda Sawyer : English Faculty
Brenda Sawyer

A lifelong Mainer, Brenda grew up in nearby Wiscasset. While earning her BS in Secondary Education with a concentration in English from the University of Maine at Farmington, she fell in love with Western Maine and decided to stay, teaching English at Mt. Blue High School. Marriage and family pulled her back to the midcoast, where she taught at her alma mater, Wiscasset High School, and discovered a passion for adolescent literacy.  She returned to school in 2013 and completed a Master’s degree in Literacy Education in 2015.  Brenda lives in Dresden with her husband, Jon, and two children, Maggie and Eben.

Academic Affiliations:

B.S. Secondary Education, University of Maine, Farmington
M.S. Literacy Education, University of Southern Maine

Jack DeAngelis : English Teacher
Jack DeAngelis

Born and raised in southern Connecticut, Jack left New England to study nineteenth century American literature at the University of Richmond in the capital city of Virginia. After graduating, he traveled around the world while working in the outdoor education industry before settling in mid-coast and connecting with LA through the Educator in Residence program sponsored by Kieve Wavus Education. Today, Jack enjoys long distance running, using the Oxford Comma, and gazing over the sun-speckled azures of the Atlantic Ocean. He can leap, pounce, gallop, and weave with incredible accuracy. He is an expert spell caster and an amateur yahtzee champion. He teaches English and co-advises the Talon here at Lincoln Academy.

Sample English Course Offerings

In addition to the core English classes, which students are required to take all four years of high school, here are some examples of English elective offerings.


Creative Writing I – Poetry

In this class students read, recognize, understand, and create poetry. After familiarizing themselves with a variety of celebrated texts, students use these as models for writing poetry with similar form and content. Students study the vocabulary of poetry and poetic elements, and use free verse, ballads, haiku, picture poems, sonnets, and others as models for creative inspiration. They practice identifying rhyme, rhythm, and other poetic elements, and practice incorporating those methods in their own poetry. 

Students establish a process of writing by maintaining works in progress as inspired by classroom exercises, prompts, games, activities, visualizations, dream journals, paintings, and film. Students frequently share both working drafts and finished pieces in class. At the end of the course, students compile and share a portfolio of their work.

Creative Writing II – Short Story

This course focuses on the writing of short stories. Using classic and contemporary short stories from many genres students examine how various types of stories are constructed. Students write several short stories and one long short story. Two pieces will be developed and polished for their archival portfolio.

Creative Writing III – Screenwriting

Using classic and acclaimed films and screenplays, students will learn formatting techniques and film analysis, then begin the process of exploring stories and characters for their screenplays. These become subjects for exercises and scene studies and are workshopped and critiqued by the class. Students will outline a project, write a pilot (or 1st Act), and shoot a brief segment of their work to practice developing the visual language required for this medium.

Young Adult Contemporary Literature

This course is an introduction to contemporary Young Adult Literature. It is a reading intensive course, but students will have the opportunity to self-select their books from a wide array of current YA titles from multiple genres (fantasy, sci fi, realistic fiction, historical fiction, poetic narrative, etc.) and diverse authors representing a range of identities, genders, ethnicities and social classes. Students will evaluate, discuss and write about texts using contemporary technologies and/or digital media to compose interactive discourse. This course will include a general overview of the history of YA literature, YA book awards and banned books.

English Department News

2024 Lincoln Academy Underclass Academic Awards

On May 10, 2024 Lincoln Academy’s academic departments presented awards to students in grades 9-11 who have achieved excellence in their classes. Academic Awards for graduating seniors will be presented on June 5 during Class Night. 2024 English Awards Lincoln Academy’s 2023-24 [...]

By |May 14, 2024|Categories: Home Featured, News|Tags: , , , , , , , , |0 Comments

AOS 93 Readers Battle over Books at Lincoln Academy

The 2023-24 LA Library Team. From left: Lincoln Academy librarian Laura Phelps with Library Team members, Meara McManus, Lindsey Powell, Ella Pendleton, Kendra Gladu, Freya Drum, Neptune Martin, Maggie Sawyer, Reese Achorn, Micah Bassett, Elliott Heath. On Tuesday, January 30 over 60 elementary and [...]

By |February 6, 2024|Categories: News|Tags: , , , |0 Comments

LA Welcomes New Educators in Residence

Will Bliss (left) and Gus Williams (right) and  are Lincoln Academy’s 2023-24 Kieve-Wavus Education Educators in Residence. In early December, Lincoln Academy welcomed two new Educators in Residence from Kieve-Wavus Education, Inc (KWE). Each year KWE brings between 20 and 30 young people who [...]

By |December 11, 2023|Categories: News|Tags: , , , |0 Comments

English Department Photos: