What skills will I need to demonstrate on Unit Test 1?

Remember, as you prepare for our first Unit Test, you will have to demonstrate the skills we have been practicing in class, not just the information you have learned. You will need to be familiar with the content of:

  • Native American Literature and The Oral Tradition as well as Creation Stories
  • Early Explorers and Excerpt from Conquistador ‘De Orbo Novo’
  • Chief Powhatan’s Address to Captain John Smith
  • Puritan Literature and The Puritan Culture
  • William Bradford’s ‘Plymouth Plantation’
  • Anne Bradstreet’s ‘T o My Dear and Loving Husband’
  • Mary Rowlandson’s ‘Narrative of the Captivity’


But you will also need to show me you can use the skills you’ve practiced with these texts:

  • Identifying archetypes
  • Identifying theme
  • Identifying tone, and pointing to words or phrases the set tone.
  • Understanding how a writer appeals to their audience with ethos, pathos and logos.
  • Understanding what effects reliability or bias.
  • Identifying examples of bias through an author’s language use.
  • Summarizing the plot or purpose of these historical texts.
  • Analyzing a text for literary devices
  • Explaining how those devices make a text more effective.
  • Citing textual evidence.
  • Writing constructed responses using the RACE method.
  • Diagramming sentences with adjectives, adverbs, direct objections and predicate nominatives.
  • Vocabulary from the texts in unit 1.

Be sure to review your notes, go back and watch the videos and posts on this site, and feel free to contact me via Remind 101 if you have questions while you review and study.



11th Grade American Literature Fall 2017

Anne Bradstreet Poetry Analysis and Video Notes

Please see the video below for the notes over Anne Bradstreet that you will need for class. Remember to keep in mind the differences between to emotional appeals in Bradstreet’s poetry and their effectiveness compared to Bradford’s appeals in Of Plymouth Plantation… you will need to discuss this on your unit test!

Watch the background video on Anne Bradstreet below:

As we analyze both ‘The Author to Her Book’ and ‘The My Dear and Loving Husband’, but sure to pay attention to how Bradstreet always manages to combine her expressions of humanity and worldliness with her pious beliefs. Also, be sure to know the significance behind many of her allusions!



11th Grade American Literature Fall 2017

Mary Rowlandson – Video Notes and Rhetorical Analysis


As we examine the captivity narrative of Mary Rowlandson, we must begin to consider how authors use rhetoric to attempt to successfully achieve their purpose with their target audiences.

As you read the text, be sure to consider what we’ve learned in class over bias and reliability. Analyze the text, looking for three key details:

  1. The importance of religion in Mary Rowlandson’s narrative.
  2. Evidence of her own bias in the representation of the Native Americans.
  3. Her internal conflict, either over her religious beliefs or her changing views of her captors.


Before you begin reading Rowlandson’s Captivity Narrative, take five minutes to watch the short video below on Mary Rowlandson and her experience:

As we begin to examine an author’s use of rhetoric to achieve a specific purpose remember that this will be a huge part of AP Language next semester! That means you need to practice the method of SOAPSTone Plus. Begin practicing the SOAPSTone Plus analysis method – you will use it from now until May, and Rhetorical Analysis is an entire section of the AP Language and Composition Exam!


After you have become comfortable with just finding the use of these rhetorical devices, you can begin analyzing texts in the Arch Method. This will streamline you note taking over your analysis, and can be a life saver during the timed Rhetorical Analysis essay on the AP Language and Composition Exam. Below you can find a sample of the Arch Method process, as well as an example of how to conduct the Arch Method Analysis with Mary Rowlandson’s “A Narrative of the Captivity”.

 Arch Method Arch Method Rowlandson

*Click on the images for an enlarged view.

Be sure to answer the constructed response prompt for Rowlandson’s text as well:

How does Rowlandson’s understanding of her captors develop during her ordeal? Pay close attention to how her use of imagery and diction indicate this change. Cite textual evidence in your response.

Please see the images below of your in-class analysis of Rowlandson’s narrative.


















11th Grade American Literature Fall 2017

Diagramming Sentences – Adjective and Adverbs

Before you can effectively write using the English language, or even analyze how others use writing effectively, you need to be familiar with the basic parts and components of the English language. I know grammar isn’t your favorite subject to study and learn (hey, it isn’t my favorite either), BUT knowing and being able to identify these smaller component of your own language will allow you to write more effectively and assess and improve your own writing as the year progresses.

This week we will be examining how to correctly diagram adjectives and adverbs. Remember, you must pay attention to whether the adjective or adverb describes the verb or subject or direct object of a sentence, or if the adverb is modifying an adjective to determine where you should place it in your diagram.

Please watch the video below if you need an example, or didn’t get the notes from class.

You will be diagramming the sentences below as examples:

  1. Two fat birds chirped.
  2. That cute baby has been laughing.
  3. Will my mother sing?
  4. The lovely, scented candle burned brightly.
  5. Very politely, Henry bowed.
  6. The little red bird flew rather gracefully.
  7. Where did that fat cat go?
  8. Who is eating so noisily?
  9. Can my chicken stay here?
  10. Stop rudely slurping that soup!
11th Grade American Literature Fall 2017

Of Plymouth Plantation – Close Reading and Notes

Are you biased? It’s not a trick question. Practically everyone is biased in some way. If you support UGA you are probably biased against Auburn, if you support Alabama you are probably biased against LSU. You can show bias when talking about different bands, books, television programmes, politics, even the weather.

So what does it mean? Basically, bias means having an unfair or unbalanced opinion. Since historical literary documents are where people express their opinions, it means that we have to be very careful to watch out for bias.

For an in-depth guide on how to assess bias in primary and secondary source documents to add to your notes from today’s lecture, click the link below:

Guidelines for Assessing Reliability in Primary and Secondary Sources

As we continue to discuss Puritanism and analyze William Bradford’s “Of Plymouth Plantation”, be sure to remember the differences between true Aristotelian Rhetoric and Rhetoric of the Puritan mindset:

While analyzing Bradford’s bias and reliability in his recollections, you will need to consider how he employs rhetoric, who his audience was, the purpose he wanted to achieve, as well as the circumstances regarding the text. Also, be sure to look up the additional vocabulary that will prove helpful. Below you will find the notes from your GREAT (though quiet!) class discussion today should you need them for your notes:


If you need to review the video from today’s lesson and update your notes, please view it below.

Additionally you can find the syntax and diction handout linked below, should you lose yours!

William Bradford’s Syntax and Diction Analysis


11th Grade American Literature Fall 2017

Video Notes – Early American Literature – The Puritans

Students – As we move away from the oral tradition of the Native Americans and begin to examine the literature of the Puritans, take a moment to watch the brief video at the link below. You should be gathering your background notes on the period from this video.

Remember that the readings from ‘CommonLit’ are still considered a part of the texts you can be tested on – it is your responsibility to print a copy of these readings out on your own time if you need a copy to review later (I HIGHLY RECOMMEND printing our digital readings out…you guys tend to have a harder time remembering the texts that you read online!).

Remember to continue to consider our essential questions for this unit as we move forward – you will be expected to write a reflection on one of these questions in your journal, and I will expect you to be able to reference the readings and make connections between them!

  • How did we become a ‘nation’?
  • Which experiences in living in a new land nurture the individual and the community?
  • How does the land make a difference to experience?
  • What ‘freedom’ mean?
11th Grade American Literature Fall 2017

Primary Source Outside Readings

Primary source documents are those which were written or created during the time period being studied – not at a later date, or 2nd hand accounts.

As we are tasked with studying the entirety of American literary history in roughly 17 weeks, there will obviously (and to my great dismay) be MANY things we do not get to read together. To try and address this without over-burdening you with entire novels to read outside of class, I have put together a packet of primary source documents for each of the units we will be covering. Sometimes I may assign readings from this packet, but often I will simply provide it to you so that you can continue your studies of American literary history on your own. These texts will also provide you with a great deal of historical context for the other readings we will be completing in class.

I will be providing discussion questions each unit based on readings in this packet, posted to our Google Classroom, and a response and discussion with your classmates over these questions can potentially earn you 5 bonus points on your unit test.

Honors American Literature Primary Source Packets:

Explorers and Early Settlers


11th Grade American Literature Fall 2017