Friday, December 16, 2011

Homework for Winter Break - Get it Done!

Here are your guidelines for Winter Break.  You do not need to complete any of this work for Tuesday.  On Tuesday we're going to have a nice relaxing day of films and review.  A smooth transition to the break!  Remember that it's a B-day when we get back.  B-day students, we'll be having our movie day the first day back for a nice smooth transition.

AP English III:

You have two massive priorities for Winter Break:  your term papers and your reading.  Let's deal with the reading first and then the papers.  By the end of Winter Break you need to be to the end of chapter twenty-one in The Catcher in the Rye.  This is a good chunk of reading to get done over break, but it's not impossible.  Some of you may even be able to finish this in the first few days of break.  As you read, continue to develop your annotations and look closely at the deeper issues that we've begun discussing as a class.  I look forward to seeing what you all come up with after Break.

Your other major goal for Winter Break is to complete a draft of your term paper using the Google document that you've shared with me.  If you have yet to construct and share your document you are falling behind!  This is not the type of paper that you can throw together in a weekend and expect to do well on.  Once you've completed your brainstorming and gotten my approval, you should then begin your outline.  Once I see that your outline is fully developed, then I will tell you to start drafting your essay.  Remember the important steps of the outline process:
  1. Construct your argument.  What is this essay going to prove?  We used to call this your thesis, but I prefer to call it an argument.  Make sure that as you construct your argument you make sure it's got DADS (debatable, analytical, defensible, specific).
  2. Pull out all possible quotes from your sources and group them together.  As you do this, think about how you're going to organize your essay.  What will you need to discuss first?  What will you need to discuss second?  And so on...
  3. After you've pulled out the quotes and examples, begin to connect them to your argument.  How do these different quotations support and prove your argument to be true.  Put this information under the examples and explain!  Remember, you want to leave absolutely no doubt in my mind that your idea is valid.
Once you've done this, you'll be ready to draft.  The idea that I always get back to with writing essays is that if you spend a lot of time preparing, then you'll have an easier time writing the essays.  Your first drafts will be due to class for editing on the 6th of January for A-day and the 9th for B-day.  Then you'll have a week to make your edits before the final drafts are due.  Please ask for help as you're working.  I'll keep checking in on you over break.

English I:

Over break you all have an essay to be working on as well.  Hopefully by this point you've figured out what your introduction paragraph is and you've pulled out your nine examples that you'll discuss in the essay.  Your rough drafts are also due on the 6th of January for A-day and the 9th for B-day.  Please make sure that you're keeping everything focused on the novel Animal Farm and your concept and definition.  Tie all of your examples back to your definition through your explanation.  I will be available the first week that we get back for any individual conferencing that you may need. 

I did also want to let you all know that you should expect an exam on Animal Farm in the second week after we get back from Break.  Review the story and your notes over the break to make sure that you're prepared.  This exam will also cover some of the concepts we've studied in the first semester, making it more of a midterm.  It would be a good idea to also take a look at your earlier literature and writing notes to prepare for this exam.

I hope that you all have a lovely and restful break!  Enjoy the time off but make sure that you get done what you need to get done.  A-day kids, I'll see you on Tuesday.  B-day kids, I'll see you in 2012!

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