Advanced Placement English

Advanced Placement English
Language and Composition
(31196, full year, one credit)
Washington-Lee High School, 2012-2013
Ms. Sarah Haseltine
Program of Studies
Course Description/Overview (adapted from the College Board course description)
The AP course in English Language and Composition engages students in becoming skilled readers of prose written
in a variety of periods, disciplines, and rhetorical contexts, and in becoming skilled writers who compose for a
variety of purposes. Both their writing and their reading should make students aware of the interactions among a
writer’s purposes, audience expectations, and subjects as well as the way generic conventions and the resources of
language contribute to effectiveness in writing.
The goals of the AP English Language and Composition course are broad. This course provides students with
opportunities to write about a variety of subjects and to demonstrate an awareness of audience and purpose. But the
overarching objective is to enable students to write effectively and confidently in their college courses across the
curriculum and in their professional and personal lives.
Therefore, this composition course emphasizes the expository, analytical, and argumentative writing that forms the
basis of academic and professional communication, as well as the personal and reflective writing that fosters the
development of writing facility in any context. In addition, the course teaches students that the expository,
analytical, and argumentative writing they must do in college is based on reading, not solely on personal experience
and observation. This composition course, therefore, teaches students to read primary and secondary sources
carefully, to synthesize material from these texts in their own compositions, and to cite sources using conventions
recommended by professional organizations such as the Modern Language Association (MLA), the University of
Chicago Press (The Chicago Manual of Style), and the American Psychological Association (APA).
Course Objectives (excerpted from the College Board course objectives)
Upon completing the AP English Language and Composition course, students should be able to:
analyze and interpret samples of good writing, identifying and explaining the use of rhetorical
strategies and techniques;
 apply effective strategies and techniques in their own writing;
 create and sustain arguments based on readings, research, and/or personal experience;
 write for a variety of purposes;
 produce expository, analytical, and argumentative compositions that introduce a complex central idea and
develop the argument with appropriate evidence drawn from primary and/or secondary sources, cogent
explanations, and clear transitions;
 demonstrate understanding and mastery of standard written English as well as stylistic maturity in their
own writings;
 demonstrate understanding of the conventions of citing primary and secondary sources;
 move effectively through the stages of the writing process, with careful attention to inquiry and research,
drafting, revising, editing, and review;
 write thoughtfully about their own process of composition;
 revise a work to make it suitable for a different audience;
 analyze image as text; and
evaluate and incorporate reference documents into researched papers.
First Quarter: Course Orientation, Introduction to Open Prompt; Unit 1: “How to Live”
After acquainting students with the objectives of the class, we will jump into our first unit titled “How to Live:
Perspectives on the Art of Daily Living.” Students will engage with many texts. Some of these texts will include:
Into the Wild by Jon Krakauer
The Wall Street Journal’s “High Schools’ Worst Year?”
“Why I Went Into the Woods” by Henry David Thoreau
Excerpt from the documentary: Grizzly Man
An excerpt from The Autobiography of Ben Franklin
“On Ben Franklin’s Virtues” by D.H. Lawrence
“Letter to His Son” by Lord Chesterfield
“Against Work” by Chris Clausen
“The Company Man” by Ellen Goodman
“The Colonel” by Michael Hogan
“Naps” by Barbara Holland
Second Quarter: Unit 2: “How to Say it Best: The Wide Range of Styles”..?
In order to start wrapping their heads around author style, students will be engaged with a variety of authors and
topics throughout this unit. Readings will include:
“Road Warrior” by Dave Barry
“I Want a Wife” by Judy Brady
“In the Kitchen” by Henry L. Gates
“Natural Selection” Charles Darwin
“Shooting an Elephant” by George Orwell
“Cyclops” by David Sedaris
“And Ain’t I a Woman” by Sojouner Truth
“Consider the Lobster”
While working through this unit, students will complete the following compositions: a multi-class period partner
essay, a multimedia-essay, and an individually composed essay all focused on rhetorical analysis. The quarter exam
will consist of an “open prompt” and a “rhetorical analysis” prompt.
Third Quarter: Unit 3: “Argumentation & the Synthesis Paper”
The third quarter will focus on argumentation. Students will start by reading and responding to excerpts from the
text Everything’s An Argument and will end with students writing a research paper based upon a controversial issue
in MLA format. Through these exercises, students will learn how to assess and choose sources. The paper will
center on an original arguable thesis of the student’s choosing and will go through several revisions and a peer edit.
When students have a working thesis, they will conference with me on the direction they will take in their paper.
Student should use a balance of primary and secondary sources.
Fourth Quarter: “Finish up and prepare for exam”
The final quarter will be dedicated to finalizing all preparations for the exam and also engaging in some selections of
American Literature. The activities and preparations will include the following:
 Focused preparation for AP exam (practice timed writings for all three prompts)
 Production of portfolio
 Novels/Excerpts from American Literature (as time permits)
Writer’s Notebook/Portfolio
Over the course of the school year, students will spend time writing about various topics and responding to different
types of prompts. These papers will be kept in a writing portfolio that will be accessible to both the student and
teacher. At the end of the year, students will pick seven pieces that demonstrate growth in their writing throughout
the year. We will then discuss those pieces and the progress made either individually or in small groups.
Student Expectations
Students are expected to come to class with appropriate class materials and a willingness to learn and work. The
teacher expects behavior which contributes to optimal student growth. Respect your teacher and your fellow
students. When you enter the classroom, you are to be seated and prepared for work. Be proud of your work and turn
in neatly typed or handwritten papers without messy fringes torn out of a tablet.
Teacher Expectations
Our classroom is a community of learners, and we are supportive of each other and value the contributions of all
members of the class. Lessons are intended to be engaging and challenging. I hope to invoke creativity in the design
and delivery of all lessons within each unit of study. Every effort will be made to maintain a calm and organized
environment so every student can learn and thrive.
Folder with two pockets
Black/blue pens
Supply of lined, loose-leaf paper
Arlington County Grading Scale
A = 90 – 100
B+ = 87-89
B = 80 – 86
C+ = 77-79
C = 70 – 76
D+ = 67-69
D = 60 – 66
E = 0-59
Breakdown of Grades:
Class work
Student grades reflect student achievement and not student behavior. All grading guidelines are followed as
established by Washington-Lee and Arlington County.
When calculating marking period and final exam grades, the grade will be rounded up when a percentage yields a
decimal of .5 or higher. Students are ineligible to earn credit for assignments missed due to unexcused absences or
Attendance & Tardy Policy
Most importantly, responsibility for being in class and on time lies with the student.
Students will be in their seats and prepared to begin class when the bell rings.
If a student is late to class, they must sign in on the tardy clipboard. This will be used to change an
unverified absence (UV) to either an excused (EC) or unexcused (UC) tardy.
Three unexcused tardies during one quarter will result in an after-school detention. Parents will be notified.
Each additional tardy will result in another after-school detention. Five unexcused tardies will result in an
administrative referral.
In order to have an absence(s) excused, a student must bring a note from his or her parent/guardian to the
attendance office within two days of the absence(s). Failure to bring in a note will result in an unverified
absence (UV). Three unverified absences will result in an administrative referral.
Make-up Work Policy
Tests/quizzes: You will be asked to make up any missed test or quiz within one week of the last day of your
absence. You must take the responsibility to schedule a make-up time. Credit will not be given if you have an
unverified absence (UV) on the day of a test or quiz.
Homework: Will be due on the day on which the student returns to school from an excused absence. No credit
will be given for homework assignments missed due to an unverified absence (UV).
Papers and projects: Will be due on the day on which the student returns to school. For papers and projects,
your grade will be dropped one letter for each day it is late. A paper or project will be considered late if a
student has an unverified absence (UV) on the day it is due.
In class work: You will have one week from the last day of your absence to complete work that was assigned
and completed in class on the day of your absence. Credit will not be given if you have an unverified absence
Getting notes and worksheets from the day of an absence is the responsibility of the student. Find out where
your teacher keeps make-up work assignments.
Extra credit
If you complete the assigned work on time, there will be no need for you to pursue extra credit. Extra credit may be
offered at various times and should be viewed as an enrichment tool, not a means of compensating for incomplete or
missing assignments.
Academic Integrity
As a sign of respect in the Washington-Lee community, students will do their own work, tell the truth, respect the
rights and property of others, and act honorably at all times. Incidents involving cheating, plagiarism, and/or other
academic dishonesty will be taken seriously and acted upon according to the procedures set forth in the WashingtonLee student handbook. Students will be asked to sign an honor pledge. By signing the pledge, students will
acknowledge their understanding of the honor policy and that they have not violated that policy in any way.
Honor pledge: “On my honor, I pledge that I have neither given nor received information on this assignment.”
Please note that this class syllabus is subject to change at the discretion of the teacher during the course of the
school year.
Grade 11 Standards of Learning from the Virginia Department of Education
The student will make informative and persuasive presentations.
The student will examine how values and points of view are included or excluded and how media influences
beliefs and behaviors.
The student will apply knowledge of word origins, derivations, and figurative language to extend vocabulary
development in authentic texts.
The student will read, comprehend, and analyze relationships among American literature, history, and culture.
The student will read and analyze a variety of nonfiction texts.
The student will write in a variety of forms, with an emphasis on persuasion.
The student will self- and peer-edit writing for correct grammar, capitalization, punctuation, spelling, sentence
structure, and paragraphing.
The student will analyze, evaluate, synthesize, and organize information from a variety of sources to produce a
research product.
I look forward to a challenging and rewarding school year!
Ms. Haseltine