English IV Language AP
Postmodern Fiction: Breaking the Frame


Welcome to Eng. IVAP! I am glad to see you in my class. You are here for a reason: the combination of your past teachers’ recommendations, your grades and test scores, and --most important--your own motivation and desires have warranted you a "golden ticket" of sorts, a chance to be both challenged and rewarded. In this class you will be asked to read and write and think. I don’t believe in busy work, but I do believe in using your mind on all possible occasions. I rarely get mad, but I should warn you that I have little tolerance for two things in particular: laziness and intolerance. I am open to questions, suggestions, and even ideas that challenge my own. My office is in S105 (aka: the yearbook room), and I am available on Mondays and Wednesdays after school or by appointment. I look forward to a tremendous year.

Syllabus KEY: Here is your syllabus for the first trimester (and a glimpse at the first half of the year). This schedule is subject to change (as Robert Burns says, "The best laid plans of mice and men oft gang a’glay...), but we will do our best to follow it. You are required to have finished the reading or assignment ON THE DAY posted on the syllabus. I do not usually give pop quizzes (this is a college class, after all), but I have been known to do so on occasion if I feel that you are not reading. The best way for you to avoid these quizzes is to show me you are up to date in class by participating , adding thoughtful responses about and related to the reading in both Norton and TSOR.

During the first two weeks of class, you should be thinking about:
Which summer book am I going to present (with a group of 3-4 other students)?
You may sign up to present Tim O’Brien’s Things They Carried; Scott Fitzgerald’s Great Gatsby;Alan Paton’s Cry the Beloved Country; Hamlet; or Tom Stoppard’s Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead. For detailed instructions about how and what to present click here.

B. Which second trimester book/author am I going to sign up to present?
This book and author will also turn into the general topic of your research paper. See the author list for your options. Start by perusing the Norton Postmodern Anthology and choose an exerpt or short story you especially like. Then, choose a novel from the list written by that author. To generate ideas for a possible research paper topic, ask yourself what argument that piece of literature is making. How does it make this argument? Is the argument relevant today? What other authors agree or disagree?

Week One:
Welcome back; introductions
Discuss syllabus; Literary Terms
Shadow Test (grammar)
Grammar Diagnostic Test (Review the pages linked below)

PSAT WRITING Style Questions-Look at College Board's samples
GRAMMAR: structure, mechanics, and usage-Look at these sites to review
CHECK OUT Grammar Rock!

Week Two:
Labor Day; School Holiday

Reading Comp. and discussion
Discuss Book Presentations/ discussion of Revisiting History
Reading due: TSOR pp. 1-10
"How to Say Nothing in 500 Words" (Handout)
Class discussion on writing
Due: Questions for Thought... TSOR p. 10 #s1-7 (Typed, dble. spaced)

Week Three:
Bring Norton to class; Begin reading O’Brien’s excerpt p.174, finish for HW
500 wd. in class writing: Retrieve an event that has had a lasting impression on you. Reconstruct it for your readers so that they can share your experience. Try to give your reader a sense of what it was like to undergo this experience.

Literary Term/Sentence Type and Structure Test
(Review the pages linked to the right)


Picture Day
Reading Comp. and discussion

Week Four:
Yom Kippur
Reading due: TSOR pp. 17-32
Discuss in class
AP ESSAY Discuss in groups in class (Each group writes one paragraph).
Reading Comp. and discussion

Week Five:
DUE: First Personal Essay
Reconsider the experience that you wrote about in class. Try to identify the meaning of that experience. Choose a second experience related to this first, either close in time to the first experience or distant fromit. In an essay describe (1st paragraph) the first scene or experience , (2nd paragraph) the connection between the two scenes, (3rd paragraph) the second scene or experience, and (final paragraph) the idea you discovered from thinking about these scenes. (You may alter this form a little using more than two experiences if necessary, but make sure to include the idea discovered from recalling the experiences). (Typed, dble. spaced)
Read essays aloud in class; peer critique
*Before writing your first AP essay, you may wish to look at some past AP essays and a 1-9 scale rubric and some sample student responses here
*AP ESSAY in class
Discussion of Rubric and Essay
Reading Comp. and discussion

Week Six:
Due: TSOR p. 32 #s1-6 (Typed, dble. spaced)
Bring TSOR -Read in class pp. 239-244
In groups answer TSOR’s #1-10 pp. 29-30 for "Talking in Class"
Read Norton pp. ix-xxx; 393-396 for class; bring Norton to class
In class: Turn of the Screw p. 396
Introduce Hamlet
Classes End at Noon; Reading Comp. and discussion

Week Seven:
Columbus Day; School Holiday
DUE: Second Personal Essay
(Choose from prompts or use your own college’s prompt).
11/12-29 Hamlet
AP Essay

GROUP REPORTS-Starting 11/1

11/8: DUE: Third Personal Essay (Choose from prompts or use your own college’s prompt)
11/10-11: ESSAY TEST on Summer Reading/Hamlet

11/15-21: Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead


11/13: TRIMESTER EXAM: Held one week prior to the exam period, it will be in the Commons Room on Saturday from 9:00 am until 12:00 pm. This exam is not optional, so please contact me ASAP if you wish to request an alternate date. (The bad news is that the exam will be a 3 hour simulation of the AP; the good news is that I will provide the bagels and moral support).

11/15: EXTRA CREDIT VOCAB JOURNAL: At the end of every trimester you may turn in your vocab journal for 2pts. extra credit toward your trimester average. The journal must include at least 200 words that you have recorded from your reading or reading comp. Each word should include a synonym, antonym, and sentence.

11/22-24: Trimester Exams
11/24-28: Thanksgiving