Your browser does not support JavaScript!
This is page logo image   This is page logo image

May 2011

Dear Student:

Congratulations on your selection into English III-AP Language and Composition for the 2011-2012 school year. We look forward every year to working with students possessing the skills and dedication to scholarship you have demonstrated thus far in your high school career.

Because students enrolled in Honors and AP programs at Glenbard North receive weighted grades for their efforts, it is understandable that extra responsibilities accompany these grades. Accordingly, students are expected to go beyond the requirements of a regular class, not only during the regular school year but also during the summer months.

As a reflection of this philosophy, we are enclosing a list of both required and supplementary reading for the summer of 2011. You must select one fiction and one non-fiction title to begin your preparation for the AP test in May.  For each of the two books you select, you are to type three one-page reading responses. Use the attached “Responding to Literature” questions as a guide for your responses.  Quote from the text to support your opinions, giving page numbers in parenthesis at the end of each quote.

These responses should be completed by the first day of class in August.  Bring your journal to Glenbard North on that day and make sure you turn it in to your English 3 AP Lang. and Comp. teacher at the start of class.  Journals will be accepted after that first day of class for reduced credit.  After that first week, no credit will be given to late journals.  It is very important that you follow these guidelines since the first grade of the course (60 pts.) will be based on your summer reading journal.  In addition, we will be making reference to these selections and their relationship to other works as we study American literature during the coming year.  

At Glenbard North, "Honors/AP" not only signifies academic excellence but also ethical behavior.  We expect all students will carefully read each assigned book and write their own responses.  They will not turn to Cliff’s Notes, plot summaries, movie versions, or the writings of classmates to complete their summer reading and journal assignment.  

Therefore, we ask all students to include on the first page of their journals the following:

                        I promise that the contents of this journal are my own words
                        and ideas based on my careful reading of the summer assignments.

                                        your name


Mr. Gary Krasno
Mr. Joseph McKeown
Mr. Scott Meyers
English III- AP Language and Composition Teachers

2011 Summer Reading for English III-AP Lang and Comp Students
Required Reading:

Fiction: Choose one from the following list-

The Reivers, William Faulkner
Catch 22, Joseph Heller
Cold Mountain, Charles Frazier
The Good Earth, Pearl Buck
Rabbit Run, John Updike
A Thousand Acres, Jane Smiley
The Last of the Mohicans, James Fenimore Cooper
Slaughterhouse Five, Kurt Vonnegut
Terrorist, John Updike
The Grapes of Wrath, John Steinbeck
Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, Mark Twain

Non-Fiction: Choose a biography of a significant historical figure* (minimum of 250 pages)…or choose a non-fiction book from the list below:
Notes of a Native Son, James Baldwin
Up from Slavery, Booker T. Washington
Human Smoke, Nicholson Baker
Against All Enemies, Richard Clarke
Patriotic Gore, Edmund Wilson
Young Men and Fire, Norman McLean
The Great War and Modern Memory, Paul Fussell
This Boy’s Life, Tobias Wolff
The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test, Tom Wolfe
The Dark Side, Jane Meyer
What’s the Matter with Kansas, Thomas Frank
In Cold Blood, Truman Capote

Journal Requirements:

Format          Date all entries and include the title of the novel and corresponding page      
                numbers (if writing prior to finishing the novel) at the top of the page.

                Type entries.

                Begin each journal entry with a focus statement that you underline.

                Stick to developing that focus statement throughout your journal entry.  Include
direct quotations (with page numbers) that support your discussion of the topic you have chosen.  Try to include personal connections and do your best to demonstrate insightful critical thinking skills.

Guidelines      Type three entries for each novel (minimum of one page typed, double spaced).
                Use the attached list of questions for entry ideas.

Criteria for    Read each novel carefully.
Evaluation      Demonstrate clear and perceptive thinking in response to the primary concerns of the author. Use specific examples (including quotes) to illustrate your ideas.
Deadline        As indicated in the attached cover letter, the due date for summer reading journals is the first day of class for the ’11 – ’12 school year.  However, your AP English teachers welcome early submission of Summer Reading Journals via email at any time during the summer.  You may submit journal responses, in a Microsoft Word attachment, directly to your teacher at the appropriate addresses below.  (To be safe, though, also bring a hard copy on that first day of class.)


* For a biography, a literary, artistic, or military figure would be appropriate.  You may choose an important scientist or political leader.  Do not choose rock stars, athletes, gangsters, movie stars, etc.

Responding to Literature

For each approximate third of the book you are reading, write a thoughtful journal response that goes beyond a summary of what happens. Consider the topics below for ways you might focus your analysis, though your ultimate purpose is to provide thoughtful analysis of the author’s overall theme—what message is he/she trying to send to the reader? What belief system is being supported? Rejected? Consider: how might the author be making a call to action to readers?
The other questions below are more to pointed toward HOW the author goes about making the reader consider his/her perspective.

1.      What is the main conflict for this protagonist? What obstacles does he/she
                encounter, or what obstacles do you foresee?

2.      Which character(s) is the most complex or the most interesting? Why?

3.      What imagery recurs through the story? Has anything been described in such a way, or with such frequency, as to suggest that it may be symbolic? What do you think the author might be trying to suggest by these language patterns?

4.      Which characters are dynamic and what is it that brings about significant change in them?

5.      Does the depiction of characters strike you as realistic? Why or why not?

6.      What scene was the most interesting or moving to you personally? Explain.

7.      What was the most interesting passage you've come across so far?  How does it relate to scenes, characters or some prominent theme?

8.      What have you learned about the place and time period depicted in this work?

9.      Considering that most great literature is written to illuminate some aspect of life, or some facet of human nature, what do you take to be the main subject of this novel? What is one of the points the author is making?

10.     If you were a teacher, is this a work you would like to share with your students? Why or why not?

A Thousand Acres (3-128)

Focus Statement: In A Thousand Acres, author Jane Smiley describes a male-dominant rural community that has established itself with strict adherence to traditional and often demeaning female roles.
Throughout the course of the novel, protagonist Ginny Cook struggles to defend her womanhood to her overbearing father.  She continuously tolerates mistreatment, such as Larry’s countless demands and belittling comments.  Larry Cook is definitely an idolized figure, however, his dominant behavior begins to undermine women in the farm community.  When Caroline expresses apprehension over Larry’s plans, she is completely denounced and rejected.  All the while, Ginny fails to defend her own ideas and remains a submissive female figure.  She explains, “My job remained what it had always been- to give him what he asked of me, and if he showed discontent, to try to find out what would please him” (115).
Ginny, who appears to be a capable female, also demonstrates traits of a subservient and powerless individual.  She seems comfortable with the everyday routine of preparing her father breakfast and dinner while hardly addressing her own needs and desires.  Perhaps such selfless behavior stands as a reflection of a predominantly patriarchal society.  Women, such as Ginny Cook and her sisters, were brought up to serve the working men and therefore cannot be blamed for their conformity to such a traditional system.  Ginny comments on her father’s prestige: “It was one thing, Monopoly nights, to sit around and laugh at some of the things that Daddy and Harold did or said.  It was another to confront the monolith that he seemed to be” (115).

Receipt of Summer Reading Packet:

Carefully separate this last sheet from your Summer Reading packet, fill in the blank spaces, and return it to Mr. Krasno, Mr. McKeown, or Mr. Meyers, the English 3-AP teachers.  This is your declaration that you have received the packet and understand the assignment.

I  (print your name)  ________________________ understand that a requirement of English 3-AP is to complete the summer reading of two books, one fiction and one non-fiction, and the writing of six journal entries.  I will follow the instructions as explained on the attached sheets and hand in my journal entries on the first day of class.

                                        Signed:  _____________________________

We believe that the completion of the summer reading program will be a pleasurable beginning, and an important addition, to your study of American literature and the art of persuasion.

                                                        Mr. Gary Krasno
                                                        Mr. Joe McKeown
                                                        Mr. Scott Meyers
                                                        English 3-AP teachers

Glenbard North High School | 990 Kuhn Road Carol Stream, IL 60188 | Phone: (630) 653-7000 Fax: (630) 653-7259