First Day of Class English III AP

Personal Background

My name is Mr. Hernandez and I will be your child’s English III AP teacher this year. I am teaching English AP because I believe in my abilities to develop your child’s capacity for critical and analytical thinking skills. Since I was child, I showed a natural propensity for English. I started reading at a young age and have been drowning myself in books (fiction when I was in high school and non-fiction when I was in college) ever since. My senior year of high school I made a 4 out of 5 on the English Literature and Composition AP Exam without taking English IV AP (the class to the corresponding exam; the exam and the course are much more difficult than English III AP and its corresponding exam). I am very passionate about what I teach because the skills that I teach (being an avid reader to become informed and analytical and critical thinking) are crucial to democracy and the roots of social change.

Contact Information

The best way to contact me would be through email at teacher@gmail.com. If you want to meet me face to face my conference period is 9:00am-10:00am. I am also available after school for tutoring Tuesday and Wednesday afternoons from 2:00pm-4:00pm.

Classroom Atmosphere

Class discussion is a very important aspect of class, so it important that the classroom environment is an atmosphere in which the students feel comfortable to present their arguments. I have the rules displayed on the wall that need to be followed to maintain friendly discussions. Part of what they will be learning is rhetoric (the art of speaking/writing persuasively and effectively) so not only do they need to respect each others' viewpoints but they also need to collaborate with one another. They will occasionally be put into small groups and I will see to it that when they get into small groups to work on their assignments pertaining to our unit of topic they will see different people each time they get into groups. This allows for students to get to know the entire classroom and the more they know each other the more they will be comfortable working together and be more likely to participate in class.

Unit 1 Rhetorical Analysis

Our first unit of study will be rhetorical analysis. In its simplest form rhetorical analysis asks what rhetorical strategies (i.e. diction, tone, figurative language) does the author utilize to convey his/her message and how do the rhetorical strategies convey his/her message. First we will work on the most basic part of rhetorical analysis: what message is the author trying to convey? We will practice determining the author’s message by reading several articles over diverse topics and genres so they can get a feel for building their skills at deciphering the underlying message of writers so they can be comfortable looking for any message. Before we go into rhetorical strategies they will have to memorize 30 different rhetorical strategies which they will be quizzed on the second week of school on Friday. Once they are familiar with the different types of rhetorical strategies as well as become comfortable with recognizing the messages of different genres of writing then we will get to the second part of rhetorical analysis: what rhetorical strategies does the author use to convey his message and how do they convey his message. We will read and annotate different excerpts from plays, speeches, literature, and articles so they can hone their analytical thinking skills. Then they will demonstrate that they can apply their analytical thinking skills through timed writings. They will have 10 minutes to read a passage and the prompt and 40 minutes to write a rhetorical analysis essay following the prompt.