AP English Literature and Composition

Ms. Miller
lmiller@pierce.k12.ca.us
Office Hours: Tuesday and Thursday 3:15-4:30
Course Description
This course provides students with a first year college level experience; its overview and
objectives are abstracted from the College Board’s AP English Course Description. The course
will allow students to study American writers as well as British writers in several genres from the
sixteenth century to contemporary times. The course has been organized historically and
thematically and will introduce several paradigms of literary criticism.
The purpose is to develop your understanding of the ways writers use language to provide
meaning and pleasure; the focus of the course is “close critical analysis of imaginative
literature,” which includes a study of a work’s structure, its style, its themes, an author’s use of
figurative language, imagery, symbolism, tone, etc.
The course will provide opportunity for students to write and rewrite formal papers, extended
analyses, and timed in-class essays from sample AP questions. Student writings will be of
various types including writing to understand, writing to explain, and writing to evaluate. They
will write essays in which they consider the relationship of the structure, style and theme of a
work, the social and historical values of a work, and the literary elements of the work and how
they combine to produce an effect on the reader.
The course allows for teacher feedback to student writing focusing students on the effective use
of a broad and appropriate vocabulary, organization, sentence structure, use of detail, and use of
rhetoric.
The AP Exam
Each student within this class is expected to take the AP English Literature and Composition
exam in May. Many colleges and universities will award college credit for your successful
completion of the examination (usually a score of a 4 or 5 and rarely a 3 on the 1-5 evaluation
scale). To help you accomplish this goal we will be doing an in-depth study of literary works
throughout the course of the year and help you sharpen your analytic, evaluative, and synthesis
skills.

Course Requirements:
As a student in this course, you will be held at to a collegiate standard. In short, this class is
reading, thinking, and writing intensive. You are expected to be up to date and prepared to
participate at all times.
The Reading objectives are as follows:
1. To understand a work’s complexity.
2. To absorb its richness of meaning.
3. To analyze how that meaning is embodied in literary forms with careful attention to...
 the social and historical values a work reflects

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AP English Literature and Composition










its literary artistry
its historical context
textual detail
the experience of literature
the subjective dimension of reading
including impressions and emotional responses
the interpretation of literature
the analysis to arrive at the understanding of multiple meanings
the evaluation of literature
the assessment of quality and artistic achievement
a consideration of the cultural significance

The Writing objectives are as follows: (The writing students produce is to also reinforce the
readings).
1. To discuss how particular literary elements or features contribute to meaning.
2. To discuss relevant features of the text.
3. To develop complexity and sophistication in their writing.
4. In addition, the general writing goals are as follows:
 To understand a literary work
 Respond and react
 Build annotation skills
 Frequently practice free-writing and journal writing
 To explain a literary work…
o Making and explaining judgments
o Focus on analysis
 Writing demonstrates…
o A wide-ranging vocabulary
o A variety of sentence structures
o Logical Organization
o Use of rhetorical techniques

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AP English Literature and Composition
Poetry and Prose analysis
 Students read many poems, short stories, and excerpts or short pieces of fiction in this
course. All of these are included to detect and measure style, tone, and meaning. In each
case, the intent is to have students explore the deeper meanings of the works and to
nurture a greater understanding of an author’s purpose, intention, and the "meaning of
the work as a whole."
 Students should anticipate activities and/or question-sets aimed at developing "closecritical reading" daily, written responses (explications and analysis) bi-weekly and guided
classroom discussion or work with partners or in small groups daily.
Required writing:
 Writing to understand: Informal, exploratory writing activities that enable students to
discover what they think in the process of writing about their reading (such assignments
could include annotation, free-writing, keeping a reading journal, and response/reaction
papers).
 Writing to explain: Expository, analytical essays in which students draw upon textual
details to develop an extended explanation/interpretation of the meanings of a literary
text.
 Writing to evaluate: Analytical, argumentative essays in which students draw upon
textual details to make and explain judgments about a work’s artistry and quality, and its
social and cultural values.
Assessment and Grading Policy

All assigned work will be graded in points toward a letter grade. Different assignments
require different grading scales. Rigor of response, skill-mastery, and timeliness is
required. ALL assigned reading, writing, or other assignments should be completed in a
timely fashion.
This class’ grading scale will be divided into two categories: 60% formal writing
assignments, tests, and quizzes. 40% All in-class work and homework.
60% Tests & Quizzes
Formal Papers
Culmination Activities
Tests
Quizzes
Free-read novel culminating paper
Etc.

40% Homework & In-Class Assignments
- Quick-writes, warm-ups
- Homework
- Binder and notebook checks
- Free-read novel reader’s log.
- Participation
- Etc.

Student formal essay assignments will be assessed using a 9-point AP English rubric or
some weighted or adapted version per individual assignment at the discretion of your
instructor. A rubric will always be given for all formal writing assignments.
Homework will be assigned on a case-by-case basis. In some cases, homework will be
due the next day. In others, it will be due on a later date. As a college-level course with a

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AP English Literature and Composition

strict schedule, late homework will not be accepted, with the exception of illness or
family event. Sports or extracurricular activities do NOT constitute a due date extension.
Late work will not be accepted.
I will not tolerate being approached between classes or in class itself to discuss your
grade. You may drop in or schedule an appointment during my office hours, listed above.

100-94 = A
90-93 = A89-87 = B+
86-83 = B
80-82 = B79-77 = C+

Grading Scale
76-73 = C
70-72 = C
69-67 = D+
68-63 = D
62-60 = D59+ lower = F

**This High School maintains high academic ethics and integrity. Plagiarism, copying, and
cheating of any kind will not be tolerated and will cause an immediate loss of credit. Any second
offenses will result in an F for the marking period in which the incident occurs.
Required Materials
The following materials are required of every student in this course:




3 ring binder dedicated exclusively to this course.
3 ring spiral notebook, also kept in binder.
Organization: how you organize your binder is entirely up to you. Through the duration
of this course, you will be handed several important handouts and take copious notes. I
would suggest this break-down:
o Syllabus
o Vocabulary
o Homework
o Notes/Handouts
o Extra binder paper
2 Pens: one dark ink (blue, black, etc.) and one light ink (red, green, pink, etc.) The
lighter ink pen will be used for editing and corrections.
Pencil, paper, highlighter
Post-It Notes: Post-Its are good to have when reading to mark especially interesting
passages, write questions about a passage, or to flag a page that you may want to refer to
later. These will especially come in handy if you do not purchase your own copies of the
novels for class.

Free-read Novel Assignment.
You are required to read one (1) of novel of literary merit every quarter (10 weeks). You may
choose a novel from the list attached, or present a valid case for another novel during office
hours. All novels must be approved with my signature on your reading logs.

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AP English Literature and Composition
While you are expected to keep up with the pace of this class, you will also be expected to
complete your free-read novel at your own pace. Logs will be turned in and a final assessment
piece will be assigned as part of your final grade.
Literature Units All Units will be supplemented with short stories, essays, and poetry contained
within: Literature & Composition: Reading, Writing, Thinking (Bedford St. Martin’s).
Additional works of literary merit and mention may also be supplemented.
Unit 1 Introduction to the Course
 Thinking about Literature
o Jago, et al. Chapter 1
o Studying literature, being an effective reader, and approaching literature
o Making connections between initial responses to readings and author’s craft
o Defending a “one-book/one –school” choice writing; response to readings using
experience, analysis, and extension
 Close Reading
o Jago, et al. Chapter 2
o Elements of style for prose and poetry, talking with the text, writing a close
analysis essay
o Making connections to the how the elements of an author’s style bring about
meaning in a reading and fostering skills for expressing these connections
o Essay on analyzing style’s effect on readings for both fiction and poetry;
comparison essay—using two works
 Analyzing Fiction and Drama
o Jago, et al. Chapter 3
o Elements of fiction and drama
o Writing interpretive essays
o Using elements of fiction to bring about meaning in a reading and refining the
skill of expressing how these elements lead to interpretation
o Analyzing plot of familiar legends/fairy tales/etc; writings on the effect of
elements of fiction on understanding of readings such as Dickens, Tóibín, Kincaid
and Hansberry
 Entering the Conversation
o Jago, et al. Chapter 4
o Using multiple texts to approach a theme or idea
o Personal responses to open ideas such as “what it means to be an American”;
comparing free-writes to published readings on the same idea or theme; mimicry
writing of style
Assessments: After receiving direct instruction on format, organization, sentence structure, and
use of supporting details students will complete various writing assignments within this unit
focusing on each of the ideas presented. Students will also work in groups with various readings.
Types of writing are indicated within each part of the introduction.
Unit 2—Home and Family—Focus=Comparison and Contrast
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AP English Literature and Composition
Objectives:
 Students will close read fiction, nonfiction, poetry, drama, and visual text on the theme of
home and family.
 Students will continue composition instruction, including journal writing, use of graphic
organizers, paragraph writing, in-class timed writing, peer editing, as well as teacher
editing
 Students will incorporate literary terms and techniques into their response as they write
about the effects of these techniques on the theme and meanings of the works
 Students will analyze sample responses to writings about the readings
 Possible readings for this unit will come from the suggestions in Literature and
Composition chapter 5 and include but are not limited to:
o The Dead by James Joyce
o Fences by Wilson
o Babylon Revisited by Fitzgerald
o Before the Birth of One of Her Children by Bradstreet
o Mother to Son by Hughes
o Those Winter Sundays by Hayden
o A Family by Lawrence
o Brain Food by Offutt
o If You Are What You Eat, Then What Am I? by Kothari
Assessments:
 Test on the appropriate longer work (Joyce, Wilson, or Fitzgerald)
 Essay assignment for the theme of Home and Family using texts; formal assignment
(Literature and Composition pg. 365)
 Exploring the text questions for readings
 Use of TP CASTT with poetry—explication technique for poetry that identifies and
analyzes the speaker’s tone, attitude, and use of figurative language to convey a theme or
idea
Unit 3—Identity and Culture—Focus=Close Reading
Objectives:
 Students will close read fiction, nonfiction, poetry, drama, and visual text on the theme of
home and family.
 Students will continue composition instruction, including journal writing, use of graphic
organizers, paragraph writing, in-class timed writing, peer editing, as well as teacher
editing
 Students will incorporate literary terms and techniques into their response as they write
about the effects of these techniques on the theme and meanings of the works
 Students will analyze sample responses to writings about the readings
 Possible readings for this unit will come from the suggestions in Literature and
Composition chapter 6 and include but are not limited to:
o Heart of Darkness by Conrad
o A&P by Updike
o The World is Too Much with Us by Wordsworth
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AP English Literature and Composition
o The Apology by Emerson
o Heritage by Cullen
o Self-Portrait on the Borderline between Mexico and the United States by Kahlo
o The White Man’s Burden by Kipling
o The Black Man’s Burden by Johnson
o An Image of Africa by Achebe
Assessments:
 Test on the appropriate longer work (Conrad)
 Essay assignment for the theme of Identity and Culture using texts; formal assignment
(Literature and Composition pg. 571)
 Exploring the text questions for readings
 Use of TP CASTT with poetry—explication technique for poetry that identifies and
analyzes the speaker’s tone, attitude, and use of figurative language to convey a theme or
idea
Unit 4—Love and Relationships—Focus=Irony
Objectives:
 Students will close read fiction, nonfiction, poetry, drama, and visual text on the theme of
home and family.
 Students will continue composition instruction, including journal writing, use of graphic
organizers, paragraph writing, in-class timed writing, peer editing, as well as teacher
editing
 Students will incorporate literary terms and techniques into their response as they write
about the effects of these techniques on the theme and meanings of the works
 Students will analyze sample responses to writings about the readings
 Possible readings for this unit will come from the suggestions in Literature and
Composition chapter 7 and include but are not limited to:
o The Importance of Being Earnest: A Trivial Comedy for Serious People by Wilde
o Woman Hollering Creek by Cisneros
o The Lady with the Little Dog by Chekhov
o A Rose for Emily by Faulkner
o The Flea by Donne
o To the Virgins, to Make Much of Time by Herrick
o She Walks in Beauty by Byron
o Siren Song by Atwood
o My mistress’ eyes are nothing like the sun by Shakespeare
o My ugly love, Sonnet XX by Neruda
o The Kiss by Klimt
o The Art of Courtly Love by Capellanus
o To His Coy Mistress by Marvell
o Boyfriend by Munroe
Assessments:
 Test on the appropriate longer work and poem groupings (Wilde)

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AP English Literature and Composition


Essay assignment for the theme of Identity and Culture using texts; formal assignment
(Literature and Composition pg. 717)
Exploring the text questions for readings
Use of TP CASTT with poetry—explication technique for poetry that identifies and
analyzes the speaker’s tone, attitude, and use of figurative language to convey a theme or
idea

Unit 5—Conformity and Rebellion—Focus=Tone and Close Reading of Drama
Objectives:
 Students will close read fiction, nonfiction, poetry, drama, and visual text on the theme of
home and family.
 Students will continue composition instruction, including journal writing, use of graphic
organizers, paragraph writing, in-class timed writing, peer editing, as well as teacher
editing
 Students will incorporate literary terms and techniques into their response as they write
about the effects of these techniques on the theme and meanings of the works
 Students will analyze sample responses to writings about the readings
 Possible readings for this unit will come from the suggestions in Literature and
Composition chapter 8 and include but are not limited to:
o Hamlet, Prince of Denmark by Shakespeare
o The Book of the Dead by Danticat
o Bartleby, the Scrivener: A Story of Wall Street by Melville
o The Collar by Herbert
o Song: To the Men of England by Shelley
o anyone lived in a pretty how town by Cummings
o Do not go gentle into that good night by Thomas
o Book covers for Hamlet
o The Metamorphosis by Kafka
o from The Metamorphosis by Kuper
Assessments:
 Test on the appropriate longer work and poem groupings (Shakespeare and Kafka)
 Essay assignment for the theme of Identity and Culture using texts; formal assignment
(Literature and Composition pg. 1029)
 Exploring the text questions for readings
 Use of TP CASTT with poetry—explication technique for poetry that identifies and
analyzes the speaker’s tone, attitude, and use of figurative language to convey a theme or
idea

Unit 6—Art and the Artist—Focus=Figurative Language and Close Reading of Poetry
Objectives:

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AP English Literature and Composition

Students will close read fiction, nonfiction, poetry, drama, and visual text on the theme of
art and the artist.
 Students will continue composition instruction, including journal writing, use of graphic
organizers, paragraph writing, in-class timed writing, peer editing, as well as teacher
editing
 Students will incorporate literary terms and techniques into their response as they write
about the effects of these techniques on the theme and meanings of the works
 Students will analyze sample responses to writings about the readings
 Possible readings for this unit will come from the suggestions in Literature and
Composition chapter 9 and include but are not limited to:
o The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock by Eliot
o The Yellow Wallpaper by Gilman
o Cathedral by Carver
o My last Duchess by Browning
o Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Blackbird by Stevens
o Singapore by Oliver
o Nighthawks (painting) by Hopper
o Hopper’s “Nighthawks” by Sadoff
o Inventing My Parents: After Edward Hopper’s Nighthawks by Ludvigson
Assessments:
 Test on the appropriate longer work and poem groupings (Eliot)
 Essay assignment for the theme of Art and the Artist using texts; formal assignment
(Literature and Composition pg. 1163)
 Exploring the text questions for readings
 Use of TP CASTT with poetry—explication technique for poetry that identifies and
analyzes the speaker’s tone, attitude, and use of figurative language to convey a theme or
idea
Unit 7—Tradition and Progress—Focus=Syntax
Objectives:
 Students will close read fiction, nonfiction, poetry, drama, and visual text on the theme of
tradition and progress.
 Students will continue composition instruction, including journal writing, use of graphic
organizers, paragraph writing, in-class timed writing, peer editing, as well as teacher
editing
 Students will incorporate literary terms and techniques into their response as they write
about the effects of these techniques on the theme and meanings of the works
 Students will analyze sample responses to writings about the readings
 Possible readings for this unit will come from the suggestions in Literature and
Composition chapter 10 and include but are not limited to:
o Daisy Miller by James
o Everyday Use by Walker
o Elegy Written in a Country Churchyard by Gray
o London by Blake
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AP English Literature and Composition
o God’s Grandeur by Hopkins
o Mending Wall by Frost
o The Second Coming by Yeats
o Forty Acres by Walcott
o Mannahatta by Whitman
o Chicago by Sandburg
o The Harlem Renaissance: Progress Within Tradition
Assessments:
 Test on the appropriate longer work and poem groupings (James/ Whitman, Sandburg)
 Essay assignment for the theme of tradition and progress using texts; formal assignment
(Literature and Composition pg. 1323)
 Exploring the text questions for readings
 Use of TP CASTT with poetry—explication technique for poetry that identifies and
analyzes the speaker’s tone, attitude, and use of figurative language to convey a theme or
idea
Unit 8—War and Peace—Focus=Imagery and Analyzing Theme in Drama
Objectives:
 Students will close read fiction, nonfiction, poetry, drama, and visual text on the theme of
war and peace.
 Students will continue composition instruction, including journal writing, use of graphic
organizers, paragraph writing, in-class timed writing, peer editing, as well as teacher
editing
 Students will incorporate literary terms and techniques into their response as they write
about the effects of these techniques on the theme and meanings of the works
 Students will analyze sample responses to writings about the readings
 Possible readings for this unit will come from the suggestions in Literature and
Composition chapter 11 and include but are not limited to:
o Antigone by Sophocles
o War by Pirandello
o The First Year of My Life by Spark
o The Champion Arms for Battle, from Book 19 of the Iliad by Homer
o Shiloh: A Requiem by Melville
o Lamentations by Sassoon
o Dulce et Decorum Est by Owen
o The Terrorist, He Watches by Szymborska
o An Iraqi Evening by Al-Sa’igh
o The Parable of the Old Man and the Young by Owen
o Arms and the Boy by Owen
o Ulysses by Tennyson
Assessments:
 Test on the appropriate longer work and poem groupings (Sophocles)
 Essay assignment for the theme of war and peace using texts; formal assignment
(Literature and Composition pg. 1469)
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AP English Literature and Composition

Exploring the text questions for readings
Use of TP CASTT with poetry—explication technique for poetry that identifies and
analyzes the speaker’s tone, attitude, and use of figurative language to convey a theme or
idea

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