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Summer 2016 Discussion Group

This post will have all the topics for the 2016 Summer Discussion Group. During the summer, let’s meet at 7:00 p.m. on Wednesday at Scenic Brew unless otherwise noted. If you have ideas for topics, please feel free to send them my way.

Final Week, Final Thought

Thanks for letting me share the classroom with you all for a semester. In the midst of the hectoring about essays, rants about “the most beautiful sentence ever written,” and criticism of the system, you all found at least a few moments of knowledge or wisdom that will last beyond this semester.

I’ll close this year as I often do with a quote from Walt Whitman, who offers even better life advice than Oprah:

This is what you shall do; Love the earth and sun and the animals, despise riches, give alms to every one that asks, stand up for the stupid and crazy, devote your income and labor to others, hate tyrants, argue not concerning God, have patience and indulgence toward the people, take off your hat to nothing known or unknown or to any man or number of men, go freely with powerful uneducated persons and with the young and with the mothers of families, read these leaves in the open air every season of every year of your life, re-examine all you have been told at school or church or in any book, dismiss whatever insults your own soul, and your very flesh shall be a great poem and have the richest fluency not only in its words but in the silent lines of its lips and face and between the lashes of your eyes and in every motion and joint of your body.


Honors III Period 4 and English III Period 7 Wilderness Test Questions

Below is the list of questions that could potentially appear on the Wilderness exam. The test will have two portions: one section in which you identify the author of a passage and one section in which you write fully-developed paragraph responses to four of these questions. For the paragraph portion, plan to write detailed, specific arguments that demonstrate knowledge of the text and our class discussions. During your answers, you will need to make reference to at least seven sources. One of your sources can be Into the Wild.

The Period 4 Test is on Friday. Period 7 test is on Wednesday, during the final period. The Period 2 test will be during the final period on Tuesday. These are not the questions for that test.

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Summer Reading for AP Lit and Language

For AP Lang

Each student should read at least five of the essays in The New Kings of Non-Fiction, edited by Ira Glass, ISBN 9781594482670. In addition, each student should read at least one more work from this list of texts. When you return to school in the fall, you should be able to write intelligently about the ideas, arguments, concepts, and writing style of each work. Pay particular attention to the central argument(s) of each work, and how the author connects with her audience. Some of these works are very challenging; make sure to read carefully and consider finding a partner to read and discuss the text with you.

 Enjoy the reading! Don’t treat it as a chore, but an opportunity to read something interesting and engaging.

 A final suggestion would be to read as many articles from quality magazines like The Atlantic, The New Yorker, and/or Harper’s Magazine during the summer as you can, paying attention to argument, style, and structure.

For AP Lit

Coming soon!

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Random Quote

All art is a kind of confession, more or less oblique. All artists, if they are to survive, are forced, at last, to tell the whole story; to vomit the anguish up.

— James Baldwin

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