English II Honors Summer Assignment by ujp66840


									English I Honors – Summer Reading Assignment


This course is a survey of World Literature. Your summer reading list contains one work
of fiction and two works of nonfiction, all of which explore the choices humans make
when their survival is threatened. The notes and questions below are intended to guide
your thinking, reading and writing for this assignment.

Red Scarf Girl is Ji-Li Jiang’s memoir about coming of age in China during the Cultural
Revolution. Before beginning the book, you should conduct some brief, basic research on
the events that occurred in China from 1966 – 1976. Find out who Mao Zedong was and
what his Chinese Communist Party did during this era. This pre-reading exercise is
intended to enhance your understanding of Ji-Li Jiang’s story and is highly
recommended. [Please bring in your research notes on the first day of class.] While you
are reading Jiang’s memoir, be sure to focus on how ordinary people respond when their
survival is threatened. Look for examples of courageous responses and cowardly
responses. Identify those who exhibit compassionate behavior or its antithesis. Discern
why people make the choices they do, and what their behavior tells us about them.

The Chocolate War is Robert Cormier’s young adult novel about a ninth-grade boy’s
struggle against powerful and corrupt forces in his high school. When protagonist Jerry
Renault resists the control of the school’s gang by boycotting a mandatory school
fundraiser, he becomes the target of intense ridicule and harassment. While you are
reading, compare the motives and methods of the characters. Analyze what happens when
Jerry takes a moralistic stance against the vindictive powers-that-be at his school.
Specifically, identify the steps he takes to survive in such a hostile environment. Decide
whether – in your opinion – Jerry makes any mistakes, or whether he performs as well as
could be expected under the circumstances. Finally, think deeply about the ending of the
story. Do you agree with Jerry’s final analysis of events? Why or why not?

Night is Elie Wiesel’s memoir about coming face-to-face with death in concentration
camps during the Holocaust. Wiesel describes how he adjusts from being a typical 15
year-old-boy to being a brutalized prisoner of the Nazis. He speaks hauntingly of his
struggle to survive while maintaining his dignity as a human being, even as his captors
descend into savagery. To prepare for reading the story, conduct some research on the
Holocaust during WWII. Look up basic facts about the concentration camps at Auschwitz
and Buchenwald. [These notes should be brief. Bring them to class on the first day.] As
you read, focus not only on how Wiesel survives, but how he retains his compassion and
upholds his moral code. Compare man’s inhumanity to man, as shown by the Nazis, to
Wiesel’s refusal to give up or in.
Writing Prompt:

The following questions are intended to guide your thinking process as you begin to
formulate your ideas for a thesis. Once you have contemplated them, compose a thesis
that provides a definitive answer.

           • In what ways do the main characters (in these three stories) respond when
           they are confronted with dehumanizing, life-threatening conditions?

           • What are their motives? Why do they choose one response over another?

           • How do they come to terms with what they have seen and done?

Remember, your thesis statement must explicitly state the topic (the main characters’
responses to dehumanizing, life-threatening conditions) AND the position you are taking
on that topic (you decide this). Your position must be defensible, which means you must
be able to prove its legitimacy. You will accomplish this by citing details from the stories
and providing your own analysis of how those details prove the thesis.


   •   Your essay must contain an introduction, three body paragraphs and a conclusion.
   •   Your thesis statement must be the last sentence in the introduction and should set
       up your paper for analysis, NOT basic plot summary.
   •   The body paragraphs must contain details from the text (either paraphrased or
       quoted directly) as well as your explanation of how those details prove the thesis.
   •   The essay must be a minimum of 2-3 pages in length. It must be word-processed
       in black ink on white paper and double-spaced. Use 12-pt. Times Roman or New
       Times Roman font only.
   •   Set up the document with 1” margins all around; insert a header with your last
       name and the page number on every page (including the first page). Align it at the
       top right-hand corner of each page.
   •   Include a title that previews your thesis. Do not use “Essay” as a title.
   •   Proofread! Revise and edit! Your paper should be error-free. Avoid all of the
       basic writing mistakes by staying away from personal pronouns (no “I” or “you”);
       weak, unclear and awkward sentences; commentary that does not relate directly to
       the thesis; and weak paragraph structure. Do not abbreviate or use slang/informal
       diction; this is a formal essay, not a conversation or text message!
   •   Write in the present tense. Literature is happening now.

Your essay and research notes will be collected on the FIRST DAY OF CLASS…no
exceptions! If you have questions, please feel free to contact me over the summer via
email: mrsbiagio@gmail.com.

Happy reading and writing! I look forward to meeting you in September.

Mrs. Biagio ☺
English II Honors Summer Assignment

A Utopia is an ideal place; sometimes a visionary but often impractical system of social
or political perfection. A Dystopia is a place or state with bad or imperfect conditions; it
is the opposite of a utopia. Using what you know about Utopia/Dystopia, create a thesis
and write a paper that clearly addresses the following:

In all three books, the characters are searching for perfection, a Utopia. They are
searching for an ideal. In the two novels this ideal is represented in a future world and in
the non fiction piece, it is a place free from the materialistic constraints of society. What
parallels can be drawn between the books that link them thematically and speak to
the authors’ individual and collective opinions on the search for perfection? Please
make sure that you spend your time analyzing the texts in search of both common beliefs
despite stylistic differences, as well as thematic and idealistic contrasts. PLEASE
AVOID PLOT SUMMARY!! The only time plot has a place is if it needed to directly
support analysis.

Requirements for the essay:

       •   Must be a minimum of 5-6 pages TYPED
       •   Must have an introduction with a clear thesis and a conclusion
       •   Must use at least two quotations from each book to prove your point and
           support your thesis
       •   Must be written in the present tense – when you write about literature you
           always use the present tense.

PLEASE make an effort to avoid common mistakes like word choice errors and
confusing or awkward sentences. You will receive 2 grades for this paper, a content
grade worth a test grade and a mechanics/structure grade also worth a test grade.

If you have questions, please feel free to contact me via email:

This paper will be collected ON THE FIRST DAY OF CLASS…no exceptions!!

Mrs. Walsh
English III Honors – Summer Reading Assignment

English III is a study of American Literature. The books chosen for the summer reading
assignment offer a cross section of American life – some real and some fictional. All of
these books revolve around the ideal of the American Dream. Keeping this in mind, use
the three novels to answer the following:

America is the “great experiment” in providing “life, liberty and the pursuit of
happiness.” It is a promise that was made by our forefathers to every American citizen.
However, many citizens might see the American dream as something elusive and often
unattainable. Does the American Dream exist? Is it really a “dream” or is it a
“nightmare?” Use the three books to explore these questions, making sure to link the
novels in a common way as well as contrast each author’s individual perspective. Your
thesis statement should provide a definitive answer to the above questions and set your
paper up for theoretical analysis, and NOT for basic plot summary.

   • Minimum 6-8 typed pages
   • Direct quotations from each of the novels, cited in the correct MLA format
   • A works cited page
   • Your paper should be void of all of the basic writing mistakes – stay away from
       personal pronouns, weak and awkward statements, weak paragraph structure, etc.

This paper will be collected on the FIRST DAY OF CLASS…no exceptions!

If you have questions, please feel free to contact me over the summer via email:

Good Luck!! ☺
Mrs. Walsh

Summer Reading Assignment – English Composition – Mr. Irilli
Students will read The Prince by Niccolo Machiavelli

Students are encouraged to also annotate (underline and take notes in the
margins). This is a common practice in any college or university.
It will be expected in this course as well, so get used to it. However, I realize
that you may be borrowing the book so this assignment is not a required part of your

Students must construct a 4-6 page double spaced typed outline (A sentence outline is
preferred for this particular assignment). The outline (based upon your reading/notes/etc)
should be standard MLA style with Roman Numerals, Capital Letters, and Numbers etc.
Also, include a brief paragraph synopsis at the top. The synopsis should include the
literary work’s main purpose and style.
The outline will count as points towards your first marking period average.
It may also be used to write your first major paper in the course.

*Outline is due on the first day of school and will be collected. You will then be able
to use it for your Summer Reading Essay (This paper will be assigned the second week of

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