Wednesday, May 2, 2012

AP Test Multiple Choice Tips

  • Learn the test structure, time period for each section, and directions for each section. Knowing this information has two benefits for you. First, you will know ahead of time what you are expected to do, so you can practice. Second, knowing what kinds of tasks you will need to perform will relieve some of your test anxiety.
  • Learn the vocabulary of the subject matter. You will not be able to answer questions if you do not understand what the terms mean. The glossary at the back of your textbooks can be handy study guides.
  • Annotate the questions. Circle, bracket, underline, checkmark—in some way highlight the key words in the question. Use these to help you find the right answer choice.
  • Use the process of elimination when you are not sure about an answer.Even the College Board suggests that if you are not sure about an answer but can eliminate at least one answer choice as being wrong, guess. Use logic to work your way through the answer choices until, through the process of elimination, you can select one answer as your best "guess."
  • Guess if you have to. Part of pacing is moving on when you come to a question that stumps you. But if, when you come back to it, you still are not sure of the answer and hesitate to use the process of elimination, think of these facts: A wrong answer deducts a 1/4 point from your score. A right answer adds a point. You would need to guess wrong four times to lose a whole point.
  • Pace yourself; this is a major benefit of practicing for the test. You may be expected to answer 80 multiple-choice questions in 55 minutes and plan and write an essay in 35 minutes. Only by pacing yourself will you be able to come near to accomplishing these tasks. Work out a pacing schedule for yourself. Write it in your test booklet if you have to in order to remind yourself to work steadily and efficiently. It will help keep your anxiety level under control.
  • Don't be careless in marking or erasing answers on the answer sheet. In other words, blacken answer ovals completely and erase your changes completely. You have probably heard this every time you have taken a standardized test, but it is true. Multiple-choice tests are scored by machine and the machine is not programmed to deal with pencil marks, only blackened answer ovals.
  • If you skip answering a question, circle the question number in the test booklet, not on the answer sheet. The same reason applies; stray marks confuse the machine.
  • If you skip a question, be sure you skip the answer line for that question.

AP Test Essay Suggestions

  • Answering essay questions generally requires a good deal of training and practice. Students too often begin to write immediately, creating a string of disconnected, poorly planned thoughts. You need to learn to attack questions methodically and to plan your answers before putting pencil to paper.
  • Carefully analyze the question, thinking through what is being asked, and identify the elements that must be addressed in the response. Others require you to consider all the similarities between people or events, and then to think of all the ways they are different.
  • After you have determined what is involved in answering the question, consider what evidence you can incorporate into your response. Review the evidence you learned during the year that relates to the question and then decide how it fits into the analysis. Does it demonstrate a similarity or difference? Does it argue for or against the generalization that is being addressed?
  • Whenever you offer evidence to illustrate contrast or similarity, clearly state your intent. Then, with additional information or analysis, elaborate on the ways in which these pieces of evidence are similar or different. If there is evidence that refutes a statement, explain why it argues against the statement. Your answer should reflect an understanding of the subtleties of the questions.
  • Begin writing only after you have thought through the evidence you plan to use, and have determined what your thesis statement will be. Once you have done this, you will be in a position to answer the question analytically instead of in a rambling narrative. You will also know whether you are going to argue on a side that supports or refutes the statement, and whether similarities outweigh the differences.
  • Learn how to present your thesis statement: describe your overarching framework and then position your supporting evidence so that it is obviously directed to the question—not just a string of abstract generalizations. State your points as clearly as possible, not leaving it to the reader to infer what is meant or how something illustrates a point.
  • If you have done the analytical work required prior to writing, you should be able to demonstrate an understanding of the complexity of the question. You should be able to state your thesis, introduce the elements that support the thesis, and demonstrate the logic that led you to link the elements in support of the thesis. By applying these ideas you will construct an excellent essay.
  • While essay writing in general is a valuable exercise, you may wish to work specifically on free-response questions from previous AP Examinations. This will allow you to compare your own responses with those that have already been scored and evaluated by faculty consultants. Free-response questions are available through the Advanced Placement Program® in numerous formats.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Literary Terms Practice Test

  1. alliteration
  2. allusion
  3. anaphora
  4. antithesis
  5. assonance
  6. consonance
  7. diction
  8. hyperbole
  9. imagery
  10. metaphor
  11. oxymoron
  12. paradox
  13. personification
  14. pun
  15. rhyme
  16. simile
  17. symbol
  18. understatement
  19. verbal irony


_____1. Use of contradictory words in the same phrase

_____2.  Repetition of vowel sounds in a series of words

_____3.  Repetition of the same word or phrase at the beginning of lines, clauses, or sentences.

_____4. Repetition of initial consonant sounds

_____5. An indirect reference to a mythological, literary, or historical person, place, person or thing.

_____6. An image which stands for something larger than itself

_____7. placement of opposite ideas in similar grammatical structure

_____8. Comparison of two unlike objects without using the words like or as. The objects are compared by identifying them or by substituting one for the other.

_____9. Words or phrases a writer uses to represent persons, objects, actions, feelings, and ideas descriptively by appealing to the senses.

_____10. Repetition of sounds in two or more words or phrases that appear close to each other in a poem

_____11. A comparison of two unlike things using the words like or as

_____12. Repetition of a consonant sound within a series of words to produce a harmonious effect

_____13. A play on words based on the similarity of sound between two words with different meanings
_____14. Word choice intended to convey a certain effect.

_____15. A seemingly contradictory statement which proves true when you think about it
_____16. An intentional representation of something as less than it is

_____17. when there is a difference between what is said and what is meant

_____18. An intentional exaggeration of something for dramatic or comic effect

_____19. to give an inanimate object human qualities    

For each example below, identify what literary term it illustrates. Not all terms will be used.

  1. alliteration
  2. allusion
  3. anaphora
  4. antithesis
  5. metaphor
  6. paradox
  7. personification
  8. pun
  9. simile
  10. understatement
  11. verbal irony
_____20. “Life is a broken-winged bird/That cannot fly”

_____21. He'd never gone hunting but decided to give it a shot.

_____22. “I must be cruel to be kind.”

_____23. “Some tinfoil was sticking in a knothole in the fence just above my eye level, winking at me in the afternoon sun.”

_____24. “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times.”

_____25. Peter Piper picked a peck of pickled peppers.

Click on the link below for answers

Monday, April 23, 2012

My Plan For The AP Test:

- Study 30 literary elements per week

- Review vocabulary from last semester and previous years

- Do 3 practice essays per week

- Do 3 practice multiple choice tests per week

- Organize a study session the weekend before the test to get last minute practice and help from peers

Friday, April 20, 2012

Annotated Lecture Notes: Part II

-Lady Macbeth- evil, manipulative, non-maternal
                      - barren, childless
                      - thinks she's emotionless but ultimately has guilt
                      - dominant, masculine

-Macbeth fells guilt after killing Duncan
(killing to make himself feel better?)
-Only cares about himself, not the future of the country of other people
                        - addicted to killing (like alcohol, drugs, or sex)
                        - makes him feel better

-Macbeth hasn't lost his moral sense
                       - he still knows and understand what is right and wrong
                       - "Come, see the night scarf up... that bond that keeps me pale"
                       - prays to take away human feeling
                       - wants to make his own mind comfortable, doesn't care that what he is doing is wrong

 -Macbeth is dehumanized
                       - man member of the community
                       - turns into a human killing machine
                       - doesn't seem to care that his wife has died " She should have died hereafter"
-Macbeth is not in denial
                       - understand what he is doing is wrong
                       - takes responsibility for his actions
                       - doesn't blame his wrong doing on the witches or his wife
                       - feels guilty, but still ok with being a killer because it  makes him feel better

-Witches are one of the main reasons for all of Macbeth's killing
                        - provided Macbeth with an ideal view of the future that he was compelled to fulfill
                        - told Macbeth the Banquo was going to get power, causing him to kill him
                        - Manipulated Macbeth to the point that he was no longer human and killed

Soliloquy Recitation- Recorded by Cali Ferrari

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Annotated Lecture Notes: Part I

Macbeth Characterization:

- Tragic Hero: he has a critical flaw that contributes to his own demise
- At the beginning he has a lot going on for me, well though of by peers
- By the end he is isolated and completely destroyed
- The loss of everything signifies his demand
- He did it all to himself, the architect of his own demise

- And oftentimes, to win us to our harm, 
The instruments of darkness tell us truths, 
Win us with honest trifles, to betray's 
In deepest consequence. 
--Banquo, Act I, scene iii
- If chance will have me king, why, chance may crown me.
--Macbeth, Act I, scene iii

Murder of Duncan:

- Why does Macbeth start his career by killing Duncan?
- His ambition is driven by the want to become king
- Macbeth doesn’t question appearance of the witches, they are responding to his desires
- Wants to be a king but its fighting w/ the idea of murder and public opinion
- He knows there is going to be a price to pay, he is not in denial or and idiot
- Is this a dagger which I see before me, 
The handle toward my hand? Come, let me clutch thee; 
I have thee not, and yet I see thee still. 
Art thou not, fatal vision, sensible 
To feeling as to sight? or art thou but 
A dagger of the mind, a false creation, 
Proceeding from the heat-oppressed brain? 
I see thee yet, in form as palpable 
As this which now I draw. 
--Macbeth, Act II, scene i

Lady Macbeth:

- Keeps the evil fire flaming in Macbeth
- She’s and evil impulse and foul destruction
- No conscious, goes against her role as a woman, wife, and mother
- She animus (masculine) while Macbeth is anima (feminine)
- We can’t blame her for Macbeth he chose his actions
- After their plan of killing Duncan is complete she is consumed with regret
- She falls apart and finally kills herself
- She thought she could distance herself from the guilt of the murders but she wasn’t evil enough for that

- I have given suck, and know 
How tender 'tis to love the babe that milks me: 
I would, while it was smiling in my face, 
Have pluck'd my nipple from his boneless gums, 
And dash'd the brains out, had I so sworn 
As you have done to this. 
--Lady Macbeth, Act I, scene vii
- Screw your courage to the sticking-place.
--Lady Macbeth, Act I, scene vii

- Nought's had, all's spent 
Where our desire is got without content. 
'Tis safer to be that which we destroy 
Than, by destruction, dwell in doubtful joy. 
--Lady Macbeth, Act III, scene ii

Macbeth as King:

- After he killed Duncan he gave up on being good
- He becomes a mass murderer
- He has an evil determination to not let anything or anyone stop him from having power, this is his only heroic quality even if its not admirable
- When he becomes king he is overwhelmed with fear
- Irony: his evil has made him terrified of his own self
- Macbeths and Lady Macbeths relationship falls apart after Duncan’s murder, before planned Duncan’s murder together, after he comes up w/ his own plans

- I have almost forgot the taste of fears; 
The time has been, my senses would have cool'd 
To hear a night-shriek; and my fell of hair 
Would at a dismal treatise rouse and stir 
As life were in't: I have supp'd full with horrors; 
Direness, familiar to my slaughterous thoughts 
Cannot once start me. 
--Macbeth, Act V, scene v
- Life's but a walking shadow, a poor player 
That struts and frets his hour upon the stage, 
And then is heard no more. It is a tale 
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, 
Signifying nothing. 
--Macbeth, Act V, scene v