It is incredible, but Tracy Edwards from Pepperdine EDLT Cadre 15 and I have decided to work on a project to connect my students with her students. I am so thankful that her team has build this incredible website to be used (http://c21.iremix.me/users/sign_in). And it was so nice to talk to her about why connecting youths across the United States is such a great solution to the writing instruction. I can't wait to tell my students that they will become writing mentors to many 6th graders in Chicago. I know they will absolutely love it!
So here are some observations on your first stack of AP Poetry essays.
1. You MUST answer ALL PARTS of the prompt!
No matter how good your essays is, if you don't have all the parts answered, you won't get a high score. It asked you to write about allusion, figurative language, and tone. I need to see all three in your essay at some point.
2. No speculative statement such as "Shakespeare probably wrote x,y, and z, to possibly do 1,2, and 3."
No one is a mind reader. You don't know what the author was thinking. You know what he did and how that worked. So say, "Shakespeare used this Bible allusion to clearly illustrate the character's devastation after he has fallen from a higher position," not "Shakespeare probably use an allusion to possibly get the audience to feel sorry for the person who fell from grace." No one knows "why." We only know what and how.
3. Mention the words in the prompt such as allusion, figurative language and tone. Don't "allude" it.
The prompt asked you to write about the terms, so do so. Prompt also asked you to write about the character's "complex" response. So say so! Don't side step them.
4. Do not wait until your conclusion to talk about all the good stuff. Say it in the introduction.
You have been taught for years about how important it is to write a great thesis statement. These essays are no exceptions. You MUST include a strong thesis statement, which means you must include the answer to the prompt in the introduction paragraph. Stop waiting until the end of the essay to answer them.
5. Back up your ideas with actual quotes and "quote" them with the line numbers.
So you think Wolsey's hurt? Where did you see that? He is angry? How did you know that? What did he actually say? Where is that line?
6. Please annotate the prompt.
You don't have this done, you know what will happen to you next time. Enough said.
7. Wirte more!
You cannot expect to get a good score if you barely wrote barely 4 paragraphs. You need to write more. Period.
8. Be specific!
Stop saying, "his feelings." What kind of feelings? Not "a variety of strategies." Say which ones. Don't say "tone." Say "angry tone." Don't say "emotion." Say "his anger," or "his disgust." And don't say, "loaded words." What does that even mean? Use actual words that are in the piece. Please be clear on what you mean.
I am a mother, wife, and English teacher. I moved from Korean when I was 23 without speaking English. Now I teach English. I want to be an Educational-Neuroscientist when I grow up!