Archive for the ‘Syllabus and Introductory Material’ Category

College Admissions Essay: One of the first things we’re doing is writing college admissions essays and resumes.  Here’s a great (and short) article on admissions essays: writing the essay sound advice from an expert.  A more current article with some very practical advice is here: “How to Write a Good College Application Essay.”   Bring prompts to class on Friday, August 31st.  (If you aren’t applying to a college that requires an entrance essay, use the Common App prompts.)   A polished draft of one of your entrance essays is due on September 14.

Creating a Resume

It’s true that in many cases the entrance essay won’t make or break your admission chances, but the entrance essay is an opportunity to introduce yourself, in your voice, and bring out things that don’t normally appear on an application or resume (so don’t just repeat your resume) or to go into more depth on one of those things on your resume and SHOW your passion and depth of involvement.  Here’s a good article SHOWING what the admissions essay can do: “Hidden Gold in College Applications.”

Creating a Resume (also due September 14): There’s a wealth of information out there — search for it!  Look at examples and use templates to format your resume properly and attractively.  

Click through the page break for more: (more…)


Rockwell, Girl with Black Eye 1953.jpg

Here are some of the texts and ideas we’re covering in the first week:

And now for texts to apply these ideas to: Icarus Prompt

And here’s a super fun, unique short story originally published in Vanity Fair in 1932: Ordeal by Cheque.  See if you can figure out what happened and support your interpretation with details from the story.

If time allows, we’ll take a look at some Rockwell paintings and see if you can come up with entertaining stories that are supportable by details in the paintings.


The Syllabus to Mr. Albert’s wicked awesome AP English Lit course can be found here: ap-12-syllabus-2018

or by clicking the page break below:


Students will need to sign up for this course on the first week of school.  



snow-1136225_960_720In case you missed class between 8/30 and 9/4, here’s the activity on Tobias Wolff’s “Hunters in the Snow”  Read carefully and as you read pair details from the story — setting, objects, events, descriptions, etc. — with the patterns we outlined in class from How to Real Literature Like a Professor.

Some potential signifiers might be: North Star, Frank’s Ring, The dog (and its shooting), Setting: night, snow, etc. Tub: obesity, secrecy, etc. Frank: pedophilia, philosophizing, Kenny:  bullying, shooting dog, Kenny dying while Frank and Tub open up to each other . . .

And finally, use those elements you just analyzed to write a three part thesis that identifies a theme explored by Wolff.  (See Essay Writing Overview )