AP Language and Composition,Uncategorized

AP Language Summer Homework

I know the last thing you would like to do this summer is to read and prepare assignments. I am sympathetic of course, but I have prepared an assignment that will help you prepare yourself for the maturity of materials and thought that an AP course in Language requires. The order of the assignments is important because their completion hopefully prepares you for the next assignment on the list. Take your time completing the assignments and produce the best work possible. When you complete an assignment, email me at davisrm@nv.ccsd.net and I will give you feedback on your response.

1. Essay: “The Politics of the English Language”

Consider fully the recommendations George Orwell makes about the effective use of language then select two speeches by American politicians to demonstrate your understanding of Orwell’s essay. Choose one speech that does not follow Orwell’s advice very well and one speech that does. Write a short analysis of your comparison and conclude with the implications this has for your own writing.

2. Poem: “The Unknown Citizen”

Compare Auden’s attitude toward the world with your own. Does Auden’s criticism of individualism in the U.S. Still ring true for your generation? As you develop your response, consider Orwell’s suggestions for the effective use of language to create the best response possible.

3. Novel: The Life of Pi

Check out this popular modern work from the public library and just read it. Don’t worry about taking notes as you move along, just enjoy the text. Then write a persuasive argument whether the animals in the story were real or not. There is a movie based on the novel that I enjoyed watching after reading the text. It may help you Brainstorm ideas for this assignment. Like the Auden assignment, this assignment requires you to draw conclusions about what an author implies which is an important skill for a sophisticated reader in any discipline.


Macbeth Analysis: Act I, scenes i-iii

Are the witches truly characters in the play or simply smoke and mirrors? The witches are literally in the play, yet they have no real power or influence over Macbeth. They simply act as a catalyst that sparks his inner drive to be something greater. Is Macbeth all that different from any of us? We all want something more whether it be a promotion, raise, or recognition. We are all human after all. Where most diverge from Macbeth as Banquo does in the play is the unwillingness to do anything to achieve our aspirations. Macbeth is so strongly tempted into authoring his own fate that murdering King Duncan is not completely out of the question. It is so tempting to give the witches too much credit in the same way that we like to blame others when we falter from bad decisions. The witches in the play and temptation in our own lives effectively get the ball rolling, but it is Macbeth’s extraordinary ambition, his dark inner self that will lead him down the path of destruction.

English 11 Honors

Link to Act II of The Crucible

Act II of The Crucible


Tutoring Schedule

2016-17 Tutoring Schedule

English 11 Honors

The Crucible Act I

One of the fundamental questions of Act I of The Crucible is what makes Abigail Williams so evil? Before the play even begins, this wild teen has had an affair with John Proctor and been fired by his wife. She is found in the forest leading other girls in dancing around a fire and she even drank a potion to kill Goody Proctor. An easy conclusion to draw is that she is source of evil that destroys everything in her path. Perhaps, there is another cause. There is a saying from The Canterbury Tales, “That if gold should rust, what then will iron do?” To put that in simple English, if the very best of society is corrupted by sin, then what hope does a child like Abigail Williams have to do the right and moral thing. In Act I, John Proctor’s sin is obvious and shouldn’t he have known better? Reverend Parris is bickering over his salary and his reputation when the town is reeling from rumors of witchcraft. I would think that a Puritan minister would put the needs of his congregation before his own. Then there is the powerful Salem villager Thomas Putnam who is so consumed by greed and power that he is willing to admit his own daughter is bewitched by witchcraft just to discredit his rival Reverend Parris in attempt to gain control of Salem village. I agree that Abigail Williams is a source of evil, manipulation, and deceit in the play, but she is also a reflection of the poor example that Parris, Putnam, and Proctor set for her.

English 11

Outline format for Gender Inequity Essay

Gender Inequity Outline

English 11 Honors,Uncategorized

Link to Act I of The Crucible

Act I of The Crucible

English 11,Uncategorized

Link to Text of “Only Daughter”

Only Daughter

English 11 Honors

Puritan Background

The Puritans

English 11,English 11 Honors,Uncategorized

Patrick Henry: Speech in the Virginia Convention

Some of the finer points of Persuasion in Henry’s speech:
1. He acknowledges and empathizes with his opposition in the opening paragraph.
“…different men often see the same subject in different lights…”
2. Henry proposes a false alternative based on emotion or appeal to values.
“…I consider it as nothing less than a question of freedom or slavery.”
Henry frames his argument so freedom is the only “real” choice. If he made it a question of peace or war, he would divide his audience. However, freedom is a value we all embrace and in that way, he takes control of the argument.
3. As a tool for counterargument, he poses a long, series of rhetorical questions that force the opposition to reconsider the hope of a peaceful resolution.
“Are fleets and armies necessary to a work of love and reconciliation?”
His rhetorical questions force his audience to compare their hopes peace with the actions of the British as acts of war not of peace.
4. To emphasize important points, he uses parallelism in certain paragraphs.
“We have petitioned; we have remonstrated; we have supplicated; we have prostrated ourselves before the throne…”
His use of a repeated grammatical structure effectively emphasizes the specific ways the the British King has disregarded and insulted the colonists’ efforts for peace.
5. Henry also uses effective diction to characterize the King in a negative, immoral, almost evil light. Words such as “insidious,” “subjugation,” and “tyrannical” make him appear untrustworthy in the eyes of the audience. Why should they negotiate with such a devil?
6. Coordinating emotional appeals in the opening and closing of the speech exhibits an powerful way to open and close his argument. In the first paragraph, he frames his argument as “a question of freedom or slavery.” All of his evidence systematically undermines the hope for a peaceful resolution until the final line when he says, “…as for me, give me liberty or give me death.” He brings his argument to a close by affirming that a life of slavery is not one worth living. It is an argument that is hard to deny and not surprising that it was a rallying cry of the American Revolution.