North Lawndale College Prep Charter High School (773) 542.1490
1615 South Christiana, Chicago, Illinois 60623 Fax (773) 542.1492
1 May 2012
Dear 202-2013 English IV: Composition and Rhetoric Student,
We are excited about working with you next year, your senior year. We look forward to assisting you
reach your full academic potential.
In order to begin the school year successfully, you must complete the following three exercises. These
exercises will become your first graded assignments of the 2012-2013 school year; have them with you on
the first day of school.
1. Choose a short story at East of the Web Short Stories, http://www.eastoftheweb.com/short-
stories/indexframe.html. Print the story. Read the story. Please bring your copy with you on the
first days of school in August.
2. In your new 2012-2013 Critical Reading Journal (CRJ), on consecutive right-hand sides respond
to the following eight prompts (A-H) based on the short story you selected.
A. Every page, briefly summarize what has happened in the story. Include main characters and
B. After reading the entire story, describe one of the main characters and an important decision
he/she makes: what is the decision, why is it important, and how does the character change as
a result of the decision?
C. After reading the entire story, choose a short passage that you think represents the meaning of
the story (the B). Write the B in your CRJ. Then explain why you chose this particular
D. Describe the setting of the story. Why do you think the author chose this setting? What role
does the setting play in this story?
E. What is the most important moment in the story? Why?
F. Do you like the ending of the story? Why or why not? To you, is there more story to tell? To
you, what might happen if the story were to continue?
G. Has this story changed your opinion about anything? How and why?
H. What did you notice about the way the author uses language in the story? How does his/her
choice of language contribute to the story’s meaning?
3. Choose A or B, below
A. Select a film from any of these approved theaters — The Gene Siskel Film Center
(http://www.siskelfilmcenter.org/); Facets Multimedia
(http://www.facets.org/pages/cinematheque.php); The Music Box Theater
(http://www.musicboxtheatre.com/); or The Landmark Theatres
(http://www.landmarktheatres.com/Market/Chicago/Chicago_Frameset.htm). View and take
critical notes in the CRJ on the film of your choice. Pay close attention to the small things that
the director does to create his/her main idea. Staple the theater ticket stub to your CRJ pages.
B. Visit “The Modern Wing” of the Art Institute of Chicago, 111 South Michigan Avenue
(http://www.artic.edu/aic/collections/exhibitions/modernwing/overview). View and take
critical notes on one selected piece of visual art (you choose — a painting, sculpture, tapestry,
costume, mural, stained glass, etc.; be certain to write down the title, artist’s name, and year).
Examine the small things that the artist does to create his/her main idea. [Please note: The Art
Institute is free from the first and second Wednesday of every month; at other times, the fee
for adults is $18, the fee for children, students, and seniors is $12, and children under 14 are
free. You may take photographs if the selected piece is from the permanent collection and you
use existing light, on condition that the photographs are for personal, noncommercial use.
Flashes, tripods, and video cameras are prohibited.] Staple the museum ticket stub to your CRJ
4. Write Your Essay
Then, you are to create an essay that weaves together your most thoughtful synthesis of both
works of art — the short story and the film or the piece of modern visual art. Attach all drafts,
including your and others’ editing notes of the drafts. Your essay should be typed, double-
spaced, and in Times New Roman 12-point font. As with any assignment, your work must be
original — not plagiarized. In August, you will be asked to submit your essay to Turnitin.com.
(See the attached essay structure.)
Summer can be nature’s time for re-imagining ourselves. We encourage you to use this summer exercise
and the rest of your summer to do just that — to re-imagine yourself, your possibilities, as you enter one
of the critical times of your young life, Senior year.
With best wishes for your summer,
NLCP Senior Composition and Rhetoric Teachers
Summer Essay Structure
A1 The Short Story syntax 2 B
technique 1 2
A2 Your chosen film technique 2 2
technique 3 2
A2 Your chosen piece of art: 1 technique 2