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AP English 11: Advanced Placement English Language and Composition

1. Summer 2010 Reading and Writing / Course Overview for Students and Parents

“I have often reflected upon the new vistas that reading opened to me.~
I knew right there in prison that reading had changed forever the
course of my life.~ As I see it today, the ability to read awoke in me
some long dormant craving to be mentally alive.”
-Malcolm X

Welcome to Advanced Placement English. This course will guide the highest-achieving cadets to
become better writers and more critical readers. Through extensive reading and discussion of
various genres of writing, and a wide variety of writing exercises, both formal and informal,
students will gain the rhetorical skills necessary for success in any college discipline. Students
enrolling in AP English should have a strong academic work ethic as well as mastery of grammar,
spelling and punctuation at the onset of the course.

Part I: Summer Reading and Writing Assignments

All of the assignments listed below are due the first day of class in September. They will be your
first graded assignments in the course. If you will not be in class the first day, email Mrs. Calkin
to make arrangements to take the test and submit your work before the first class. No work will
be accepted late. Remember that your successful completion of the assigned summer
reading and writing is a prerequisite for your continuation in the Advanced Placement
course. All current course level recommendations are tentative, based upon the receipt and
evaluation of your summer assignments. A cumulative grade of 72% is considered a passing
grade for the summer course work. If you are unable to make a grade of 72%, or if you decide
upon another English course, please notify your academic counselor immediately.

Required Summer Texts

Erik Larson’s Devil in the White City

Winston Churchill’s speech: “Blood, Sweat & Tears”

Directions for Writing about Summer Texts

In a journal designated specifically for AP English, write about each of the readings above using
thoughtful and insightful methods. Avoid merely summarizing the texts. You may choose to
discuss the writer’s style or purpose, or whether or not the author persuading you in some way.
Do you agree with the author’s assertions? How are the author’s ideas important or engaging?
How are they relevant or irrelevant to your personal view of the world? Why? Can you connect
any of your readings to personal experiences? Has any portion confused you, or inspired you to
do further research on a particular topic?

Section 2: Suggested Reference Work:

Explore the following website of literary terms entitled “The Forest of Rhetoric” at Brigham
Young University: http://humanities.byu.edu/rhetoric/silva.htm Navigate through it; have fun!