English Teacher Beaumont High School



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Mr. Ducat

English Teacher

Beaumont High School


8/23/2010
Dear Parent(s)/Guardian:
My name is Mr. Ducat and I teach AP English Language and Composition at Beaumont High School. I look forward to working with you and your child to achieve the most we can.
Your child’s best effort can only be accomplished with your help. I will provide a safe and inspiring environment in which students may learn. If there are any concerns that you have, or your child has, during the course of the year, please do not hesitate to contact me. Good communication fosters good teamwork, and your child, you as parent(s)/guardian and I – along with school administration and staff – make up your child’s education team.

In addition to the school-wide rules, I have just a few rules in class:



  • Arrive ready: be in your seat with materials (paper and pen/pencil) out when the bell rings.

  • Keep the classroom clean: food, drink (other than water), gum and personal grooming are not allowed in class.

  • Respect others’ views: listen, and be constructive in any comments, even if you disagree.

  • Keep your hands, feet and things to yourself.

The AP English Language and Composition web page is: www.quia.com/pages/apducat.html. This page contains homework and class lesson information. I update the pages frequently. I encourage parents and students to access them at any time.


Email is a great way to contact me. I check my email frequently and can often respond to email more quickly than I can respond to a phone call. Of course if you need more personal contact, you can always call or make an appointment for an individual conference.
Yours,

Mr. James Ducat



jducat@beaumontusd.k12.ca.us

951-845-3171 x 5027


Sign below, tear off and then return the signed portion to the teacher. Keep the rest for your records.

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I read, understand, and will adhere to the grading, policies, and procedures for Mr. Ducat’s class as stated in this document:
Date __________________
PLEASE PRINT parent/guardian full name__________________________________________
Parent/guardian sign here_________________________________________________________
PLEASE PRINT student full name________________________________________________
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 AP English Language and Composition

Syllabus

Course Overview:
The AP English Language and Composition course is designed to give students multiple opportunities to work with the rhetorical situation, examining the authors’ purposes as well as the audiences and the subjects in texts. Students write in a variety of modes for a variety of audiences, developing a sense of personal style and an ability to analyze and articulate how the resources of language operate in any given text. Because our students are constantly confronted with visual images, we also study the rhetoric of visual media such as photographs, films, advertisements, comic strips and music videos. In accordance with the College Board’s AP English Course Description, our course teaches “students to read primary and secondary sources carefully, to synthesize material from these texts in their own compositions, and to cite sources using conventions recommended by professional organization such as the Modern Language Association (MLA).” CR 1

Course Objectives:  In addition to being prepared for the National AP English Language and Composition examination in May, students should be able to

  • read extensively and master a wide range of works of non-fiction and fiction, with an emphasis on works by American writers. CR 6

  • understand and employ the classical appeals of ethos, pathos, and logos in any communication, recognizing the rhetorical modes, structure, and strategies used by writers.

  • become better informed citizens, capable of framing and effectively writing cogent arguments that analyze, synthesize, and evaluate various viewpoints on a wide variety of contemporary social, economic, and political issues.

  • develop a stronger and more confident voice in their writing that reflects an excellent command of diction and syntax. CR 4, 10

  • write insightfully, intelligently, and critically in a variety of genres, with an emphasis on expository, analytical and argumentative writing. CR 5

  • improve meta-cognitive thinking skills so as to respond to reading through thoughtful inquiry, articulate discussion, better test performance, and incisive writing.

  • develop an enriched vocabulary, which is reflected in both oral and written communication.

Please note that the information which follows is an approximate plan for the year. Readings, writing assignments, activities, and assessments are subject to change!

First Nine Weeks:  "The American Dream -- A Multitude of Perspectives"

Focus:

  • Summer Reading Assessment

  • The Canons of Rhetoric, Rhetorical Modes and Strategies (Bedford Reader and Elements of Argument) CR 6

  • Writing précis CR 2

  • Introduction of Rhetorical Analysis CR 10

  • Introduction of MLA format CR 9

  • Research skills in evaluating and citing primary and secondary sources

  • Grammar Review (Prentice Hall Writing and Grammar) CR 10

  • Vocabulary  (Lessons 1-5); vocabulary from readings; vocabulary needed for rhetorical analysis CR10

  • Genres in non-fiction: letters, biography and autobiography, essays, speeches CR 6

  • Genres in fiction:  novel, play

Reading:

  • Major Works

    • Henry David Thoreau, Walden (non-fiction)

    • Arthur Miller, The Crucible (play)

  • Selections (may include, but not be limited to) CR 6:

    • Martin Luther King “I Have a Dream”

    • Sherman Alexie, “ Indian Education”

    • Brent Staples, "Black Men and Public Space"

    • Jamaica Kincaid, "Girl"

    • Richard Rodriguez, "Aria: A Memoir of a Bilingual Childhood"

    • Abraham Lincoln, “The Gettysburg Address”

    • Jonathan Edwards, “Sinners in the Hands of An Angry God”

    • Judy Brady, "I Want a Wife"

    • Emily Prager, "Our Barbies, Ourselves

    • Arthur Miller, The Crucible

    • contemporary op-ed. pieces (think Time, The Nation, The National Review, Newsweek,  The New Yorker)

Writing:

  • Précis on summer readings CR 4

  • Analysis questions, journal entries, in-class group responses on assigned readings CR 2, CR 4

  • In-class timed writing using a 2007 AP exam test question

  • 1 short essay (2-3 pages) approximately every two weeks for a total of three essays, focusing on the modes of narration, description, and example. CR 2, 5, 8, 10

These essays will incorporate a minimum of two outside sources, cited in MLA format, and proceed through the writing stages of draft, teacher editing, revision and publication. CR 8, 9

  • 1 narrative, personal experience essay (4-5 pages), possibly in imitation of selected author’s style, which will proceed through the writing stages of draft, peer editing, teacher editing, revision and publication. CR 2, 3, 10



Activities:

  • Analysis of the following visual images CR 7: “ How Joe’s Body Brought Him Fame Instead of Shame”, advertisement for Charles Atlas; “Doug and Mizan’s House, East River, 1993”, photograph; “Cellular Phones of the Future”, cartoon by Barry Blitt

  • Vocabulary and grammar assessments CR 10

  • Tests on assigned reading (e.g., summer reading, essays)

  • Practice multiple choice SAT and AP type exams

Second Nine Weeks: "Private Rights and Public Welfare"

Focus:

  • Research paper (documented essay) in MLA style, on an American writer (Prentice Hall Writing and Grammar, Chapters 12-13), including selection of appropriate primary and secondary sources and proper citation CR 8, 9, 10

  • Rhetorical Analysis (Emphasis: classical argument, argument models, appeals to logos, ethos, and pathos) CR 4, 7

  • Analysis of argument in advertising (print and television) CR 7

  • Analyzing, synthesizing, and evaluating various perspectives; comparing and evaluating arguments CR 5

  • Sentence structure analysis and improvement exercises (Prentice Hall Writing and Grammar, Chapters 18-20) CR 4, 10

  • Vocabulary  (Lessons 6-10); vocabulary from readings; vocabulary needed for rhetorical analysis

CR 10

  • Genres in non-fiction:  letter and essays CR 6

  • Genres in fiction: play, short stories, and novel

Reading:

  • Major Works

    • Kate Chopin, The Awakening (novel)

    • Sampling of work by writer selected for research topic CR 6, 8

  • Selections (may include, but not be limited to) CR 6 :

    • Shirley Jackson, “The Lottery”

    • Excerpts from Ralph Waldo Emerson's “Self-Reliance” [¶11-20]

    • Herman Melville, Bartleby the Scrivener

    • Henry David Thoreau, "On the Duty of Civil Disobedience"

    • Martin Luther King, "Letter from a Birmingham Jail"

    • William F. Buckley, Jr. "Why Don't We Complain?"

    • Bruce Catton, "Grant and Lee: A Study in Contrasts"

    • Dave Barry, " Batting Clean-Up and Striking Out"

    • Linnea Saukko, "How to Poison the Earth"

    • Stephanie Ericsson, "The Ways We Lie"

    • David Sedaris, “Remembering My childhood on the Continent of Africa”

    • Fatema Mernissi, “Size 6: The Western Women’s Harem”

    • “Going for the Look” Non-fiction Expository Writing unit from the California State University Early Assessment Program (includes analysis of op-ed pieces and analysis of visual arguments made by advertisements)

Writing:

  • Group analytical comparative essay (2-3 pages) on "Civil Disobedience" and "Letter from a Birmingham Jail". CR 2, 4

  • Documented research paper (5-7 pages), using a minimum of 7 primary and secondary sources, cited in MLA format, proceeding through the writing stages of draft, peer editing, teacher editing, revision and publication. CR 8, 9, 10

  • Journal entries of (1-2 pages) approximately every three weeks for a total of two essays, focusing on the modes of comparison and contrast and process analysis. CR 4, 5

  • 2 in-class timed writing using previously released AP exam test questions CR 4

  • Analysis questions, in-class responses on assigned reading CR 4

Activities:

  • Analysis of the following visual images: “American Gothic”, painting; and “Rural Rehabilitation”, photograph CR 7

  • “Going for the Look” unit CR 4, 6, 7, 9

  • Rhetorical terms glossary CR 10

  • Vocabulary and rhetorical terms tests CR10

  • Tests on assigned reading (The Awakening)

  • Practice multiple choice SAT and AP type exams

Third Nine Weeks: "The Responsibility of the Individual to Society"

Focus:

  • Analyzing, Synthesizing and Evaluating Argument CR 4, 5, 6

  • Writing an Effective Argument CR 2

  • Grammar review of common usage problems (Prentice Hall Writing and Grammar, Chapters 21-24) CR10

  • Vocabulary  (Units 11-15); vocabulary from readings; vocabulary needed for argument CR 2, 5, 10

  • Genres in non-fiction: editorials, documents, essays and speeches CR 2, 6

  • Genres in fiction:  novel

Reading:

  • Major Works

    • Michael Shaara, The Killer Angels (novel)

    • F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby (novel) (to be concluded during fourth nine weeks)

  • Selections (may include, but not be limited to) CR 6:

    • Russell Baker, “The Plot Against People”

    • Declaration of Independence

    • Patrick Henry, "Speech before the Virginia Convention"

    • Abraham Lincoln, “Second Inaugural Address"

    • Samuel Huntington, “The Crisis of National Identity”

    • Laura Fraser, “Why I Stopped Being a Vegetarian”

    • Peter Singer, “ A Vegetarian Philosophy”

    • “Fast Food: Who’s to Blame?” Non-fiction Expository Writing unit from the California State University Early Assessment Program (includes reading and analysis of five op-ed pieces and viewing and analysis of movie Fast Food Nation)

    • President John F. Kennedy, "Inaugural Address"

    • contemporary op-ed. pieces (think Time, The Nation, The National Review, Newsweek, The New Yorker)

Writing:

  • Students cited in MLA format, proceeding through the writing stages of draft, teacher editing, revision and publication. cited in MLA format, proceeding through the writing stages of draft, teacher editing, revision and publication.’ "Modest Proposal" (2-3 pages) essays, incorporating a minimum of 2 outside sources, cited in MLA format, proceeding through the writing stages of draft, peer editing, teacher editing, revision and publication. CR 2, 4, 8, 9, 10

  • Formal essay analyzing rhetorical elements of one of the above speeches (2-3 pages), incorporating a minimum of three references to the text, cited in MLA format, proceeding through the writing stages of draft, teacher editing, revision and publication. CR 2, 5, 6, 8, 9, 10

OR:

  • Documented argumentative essay involving “Fast Food: Who’s to Blame?” materials, using a minimum of five credible sources, cited in MLA format, proceeding through the writing stages of draft, teacher editing, revision and publication. CR 2, 5, 6, 8, 9, 10

  • 2 in-class timed writing using previously released AP exam test questions, or prompts from readings CR 4

  • Analyses of speeches and assertions, editorials, and other persuasive writing CR 6, 10

Activities:

  • Analysis of the following visual images: “Workers Making Dolls”, photograph; “Mounted Nazi Troops on the Lookout for Likely Polish Children”, photograph; “Corporate America Flag” image from Adbusters Media Foundation CR 7

  • Rhetorical terms glossary CR10

  • Vocabulary and grammar tests CR10

  • Tests on assigned reading (e.g.,  The Killer Angels, The Great Gatsby)

  • Practice multiple choice AP type exams

Fourth Nine Weeks: Shaping Your American Dream in the context of National and Global Concerns

Focus:

  • Writing an Effective Argument and Rhetorical Analysis of Argument (Emphasis: review for AP exam) CR 2, 5, 10

  • Grammar review of common usage problems (Prentice Hall Writing and Grammar, Chapters 25-27) CR 10

  • Vocabulary  (Units 16-20); vocabulary from readings; final review of vocabulary needed for AP exam CR 10

  • Genres in non-fiction: editorials, essays, speeches, and book of student choice (from designated list) CR 6

  • Genres in fiction:  novel

Reading:

  • Major Works

    • F Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby (novel; conclude)

    • The Cheating Culture: Why More Americans Are Doing Wrong to Get Ahead by David CallahanDemocracy Matters: Winning the Fight Against Imperialism by Cornel West, Mountains Beyond Mountains : The Quest of Dr. Paul Farmer, a Man Who Would Cure the World by Tracy Kidder, Can't Buy My Love: How Advertising Changes the Way We Think and Feel by Jean Kilbourne, The Gatekeepers: Inside the Admissions Process of a Premier College by Jacques Steinberg (additional selections possible) CR 6

  • Selections (may include, but not be limited to) CR 6 :

    • Adnan Khan, “Close Encounters with US Immigration”

    • Linda Chavez, “Everything Isn’t Racial Profiling”

    • Zara Gelsey, “The FBI Is Reading over Your Shoulder”

    • Viet Dinh, “How the USA Patriot Act Defends Democracy”

    • Sandra Cisneros, “Only Daughter”

    • Barbara Ehrenreich, “The Roots of War”

    • Maxine Hong Kingston, “No Name Woman”

    • Edward Said, “Clashing Civilizations?”

    • contemporary op-ed. pieces (think Time, The Nation, The National Review, Newsweek, The New Yorker)

Writing:

  • Letter to character in Great Gatsby CR 4, 10

  • Two in-class essays using prompts from the readings CR 2, 4, 5

  • Documented argumentative essay based on student's "Dream", in style of Martin Luther King's "I Have a Dream" (2-3 pages), using a minimum of five credible sources, cited in MLA format, proceeding through the writing stages of draft, teacher editing, revision and publication. CR 2, 4, 5, 6, 8, 9, 10

OR:

  • Documented argumentative essay based on book of choice (2-3 pages) using a minimum of four credible sources in addition to non-fiction book, cited in MLA format, proceeding through the writing stages of draft, teacher editing, revision and publication. CR 2, 5, 6, 8, 9, 10

  • Review for AP test

  • Editorials and other persuasive writing CR 6

  • College application essays CR 2, 10 (after AP Exam- tentative)

Activities:

  • Analysis of the following visual images: “Need is a Very Subjective Word”, advertisement; “Mickey’s Evolution During fifty Years”, drawing. CR 7

  • Practice multiple choice AP type exams

  • Vocabulary tests CR10

  • Tests on assigned readings

Books and Materials:

  • Kennedy, X.J., Dorothy M. Kennedy, and Jane Aaron, eds. The Bedford Reader. 9th ed.

  • Paperback books include, but are not limited to, those listed above under each unit (Where possible, these will be provided or available by downloading from the Internet; however, students may be required to obtain copies of books or essays from the public library or otherwise.)

  • Levine, Harold. Vocabulary for the College-Bound Student

  • Course Notebook (3 ring binder with a minimum of 4 dividers)

  • Pens, pencils, notebook paper, highlighters

  • Other book and/or materials as requested by the instructor

Similarly, it is recommended that students purchase copies of paperback books to annotate them.  If a book is furnished to a student for his or her use, the student is responsible for returning the book to me at the designated time in the same condition in which it was furnished to him or her. Students are definitely encouraged to purchase their own copy of the MLA Handbook. It is an essential reference book for any serious English student.


CLASSROOM PROCEDURES/GRADING POLICY
Entering class

You will enter quietly, go directly to your seat and start working on the “bell work’ assignment on the board. Blank “bell work” sheets are in a tray on the table between the door and the teacher’s desk.



  • If you have DEAR, you will open a book and start to read. You will begin bell work immediately following the announcements.

    • You are required to bring a book to school every day for DEAR.


Exiting class

Teacher dismisses the class, not the bell. All students must be in their seats in order to be dismissed.


How I get your attention

This is our silent signal/signal for attention. I will raise my hand and keep it raised. When you see my hand raised, please raise your hand and become quiet. If you see someone with their hand raised, look around. If my hand is raised, that is the signal that I need everyone’s attention. Raise your hand and become quiet, too. Soon we will all have our hands up and I can tell you what you need to know.


Questions/Comments in class

Participation in class is expected and encouraged. Raise your hand before speaking or asking a question.


Group Work:

You will divide into groups as assigned by the teacher and form groups quietly and quickly. You will participate in the group discussion and respect others’ viewpoints.


Turning in Papers/Supplies

Collect the papers at your table, then hand the collected material forward. Late/makeup work should be handed into the wire tray on my desk. Supplies (including blank bell work sheets) are located at the same table. You may feel free to get any supplies you need during the class as long as it is not disruptive to the class. This includes sharpening pencils.




Paper Heading

Your first and last name

The date

The period

Name of assignment
Attendance

Because this class moves quickly, it is very important for you to be in attendance every day. I cannot stress this enough: you cannot learn if you are not here. Please, attend class.


How I mark daily/weekly assignments

Assignments marked with a check receive full credit. Other credit is marked as a fraction (7/10, 18/20, etc.).


Bathroom Use

Before school, brunch, lunch, and passing periods are intended as times to use the rest room; I will only issue bathroom passes from ten minutes after the tardy bell to ten minutes before the release bell.


Keeping a portfolio

I highly suggest that you keep all of your assigned work for this class. There are anumber osreasons for this, including the fact that it is your responsibility to find and notify me of clerical errors in grading. You will maintain the portfolio and you are responsible for its contents.


BHS English/ELL Department

Grading Policy

This grading policy has been adopted by the BHS English/ELL Department and approved by the administration. All teachers in the department will enforce it.



Grading Scale:

  • A 92.5 and above

  • A- 89.5 – 92.4

  • B+ 87.5 – 89.4

  • B 82.5 – 87.4

  • B- 79.5 – 82.4

  • C+ 77.5 – 79.4

  • C 72.5 – 77.4

  • C- 69.5 – 72.4

  • D+ 67.5 – 69.4

  • D 62.5 – 67.4

  • D- 59.5 – 62.4

  • F 59.4 and below

Grades are based on overall percentages accumulated throughout the semester, not the average of the two quarter grades.


Credits:

Per school policy, students who earn a D- or better will receive five credits per semester. Those who earn an F will receive no credits. Students who receive a grade of C- or above in an AP class will receive an extra grade point.


Categories:

  • Daily assignments – homework, classroom work: 40%

  • Major assignments – essays, reports, projects: 30%

  • Quizzes, tests, exams: 20%

  • Participation – classroom discussions, activities, preparedness, cooperation: 10%


Late work:

Assignments are due at the beginning of the period or when collected. Assignments turned in late will receive partial credit as follows:



  • Daily assignments – 50% of earned credit for up to a maximum of five school days late, no credit for assignments more than five school days late.

  • Major assignments – 90% of earned credit for work submitted one school day late, 50% of earned credit for work turned in two to five school days late, no credit for assignments more than five school days late.

  • No late work will be accepted for credit after the last school day of the semester.

  • Per the student handbook, students who miss class for scheduled school activities (e.g., sports, field trips) must meet the same assignment deadlines as other students.


Make-up work:

  • Make-up work for a cleared absence of up to five school days, including tests, receives full credit for up to five school days after a student’s return to class.

  • When a student has a cleared absence longer than five school days, she/he is allowed one school day per day of absence to make up work for full credit.

  • Make-up work receives no credit until an absence is cleared with the attendance office.

  • Assignments missed because of truancy (attendance code R) may not be made up for credit.

Students who know that they must be absent for periods longer than five school days are encouraged to contact the attendance office in advance to request independent study.


Cheating:

All students must always do their own work. Students involved in cheating on assignments or exams will receive no credit for assignments or exams on which cheating has occurred. Research papers and some other major essays and reports will be submitted to www.turnitin.com to be checked for plagiarism. When www.turnitin.com indicates that a student has plagiarized an assignment, it will receive reduced credit or no credit.


Extra credit:

Students are given ample opportunities for achieving success through completion of regular assignments, tests, and other activities. Students may request extra credit work only when all regular work has been completed in a timely manner.


Revised 5/6/09

Rubric for Response to Writing Prompt (based on CAHSEE)

4 The essay—

•provides a meaningful thesis that is responsive to the writing task.

thoroughly supports the thesis and main ideas with specific details and examples.

•demonstrates a consistent tone and focus and illustrates a purposeful control of organization.

•demonstrates a clear sense of audience.

•provides a variety of sentence types and uses precise, descriptive language.

•contains few, if any, errors in the conventions* of the English language. (Errors are generally first-draft in nature.)

A Persuasive Composition:

•states and maintains a position, authoritatively defends that position with precise and relevant evidence, and convincingly addresses the reader’s concerns, biases, and expectations.



3 The essay—

•provides a thesis that is responsive to the writing task. •supports the thesis and main ideas with details and examples.

•demonstrates a consistent tone and focus and illustrates a control of organization.

•demonstrates a general sense of audience.

•provides a variety of sentence types and uses some descriptive language. •may contain some errors in the conventions* of the English language. (Errors do not interfere with the reader’s understanding of the essay.)

A Persuasive Composition:

•states and maintains a position, generally defends that position with precise and relevant evidence, and addresses the reader’s concerns, biases, and expectations.



2 The essay—

•provides a thesis or main idea that is related to the writing task. •supports the thesis or main ideas with limited details and/or examples.

•demonstrates an inconsistent tone and focus and illustrates little, if any, control of organization.

•demonstrates little or no sense of audience. •provides few, if any, sentence types and basic, predictable language.

•may contain several errors in the conventions* of the English language. (Errors may interfere with the reader’s understanding of the essay.)

A Persuasive Composition:

•defends a position with little evidence and may address the reader’s concerns, biases, and expectations.



1 The essay

may provide a weak thesis or main idea that is related to the writing task. •fails to support the thesis or main ideas with details and/or examples.

•demonstrates a lack of tone and focus and illustrates no control of organization. •may demonstrate no sense of audience.

•may provide no sentence variety and uses limited vocabulary.

•may contain serious errors in the conventions* of the English language. (Errors interfere with the reader’s understanding of the essay.)

A Persuasive Composition:

fails to defend a position with any evidence and fails to address the reader’s concerns, biases, and expectations.



non-scorable: The code “NS” will appear on the student answer document for responses that are written in a language other than English, off-topic, illegible, unintelligible, or otherwise non-responsive to the writing task.
*Conventions of the English language refer to grammar, punctuation, spelling, capitalization, and usage. This guide describes the attributes of student writing at each score point. Each paper receives the score that best fits the overall evidence provided by the student in response to the prompt. However, papers that do not meet the standard for conventions at a 4 or a 3 score point receive a score that is at most one point lower.
Adapted from http://www.cde.ca.gov/ta/tg/hs/documents/teacherelaapp.pdf. accessed 8/20/2009





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