12 AP Literature and Composition

12 AP Literature and Composition Syllabus

Summer Reading 2017:
The purpose of the summer homework for this course is to practice reading literature. Close reading also helps you create connections to what you are reading.  Think about what you read.  Learning how to read literature closely is a valuable skill, and that is why we have required you to pick ONE of the three suggested close reading books.  Directions are given on the summer reading assignment (attached below), and I want to give a few extra details and suggestions to eliminate any anxiety.  My suggestion for approaching the summer work is this:  

1.  Read through the close reading book of your choice FIRST to get an idea of what close reading of literature entails.  You will find titles of novels and plays referenced in the examples, and then choose titles of interest to you. Read what you will enjoy AND try to read something every day.  

2. For your independent reading selections, consider choosing titles from the close reading book of your choice OR visit the following sites for suggested titles for 12 AP Lit. and Comp.:

a. We suggest that ONE of three independent selections to be A Thousand Acres by Jane Smiley because it is a modern version of King Lear, so when we read King Lear, you will be able to make connections between the two works. If you read A Thousand Acres, then select two other works, either plays or novels.

b. If you do not select A Thousand Acres as one of the three novels or plays, then select three novels or plays of your choice.

Works to avoid because we will read these during the course:  Invisible Man, King Lear, Oedipus, Beloved, Crimes of the Heart, Ceremony. 

3.  Once you have selected what you would like to read, get a spiral notebook (8 1/2 x 11) and create two column notes. Follow the directions on the summer reading sheet.  ALL writing EXCEPT for the college application essay may be completed in the spiral.  Clearly label what novel or play you have read, and what connections you made between the close reading book and your choice reading.

4.  Follow the directions for the poetry reading.  Why read poetry?  Well, for several reasons:
     a.  Most students have very little exposure to poetry and do not have an understanding of how poetry works. So, the more you read and understand elements of poetry, the more enjoyable the experience.  Besides, for our purposes, roughly 45% of the AP Lit. and Comp. exam is comprised of poetry, so students taking this course need to be familiar with poetry, and the summer homework offers a brief exposure to several poems before the course begins. 
    b.  Poetry helps us understand elements of humanity.
    c. Poetry is challenging and exposes us to a unique art form.

5.  You may approach the summer homework tasks in any order you want.  Perhaps you want to get the reading out of the way first, and then tackle the application essay and poems.  It does not matter the order of approach, but rather that you are reading and reading a variety of material - after all, this is a literature focused class, so doesn't it make sense to read as much literature as you can whether it be novels, plays, or poems?

6. For the college essay, visit some sites to get a basic idea of how to approach and write a college application essay.  Some suggested sites are below:

When we return to school in August, we will revise and improve your essay.  Get an essay written before August 1, so we can have a working draft to improve when school starts.

7. Don't get overwhelmed.  Break down the work into manageable pieces.  You will be better off in the long run for reading. Questions? email either Mr. Martin (jaemarti@jeffco.k12.co.us) or me (kkramer@jeffco.k12.co.us).  We will be checking emails about once a week during the summer.

12AP Summer Reading 2017-18.doc