To support AP English Literature teachers, this course will focus on strategies for teaching students to analyze novels, short stories, plays, and poetry, and to respond effectively to the AP English Literature exam’s essay and multiple choice questions.
In addition to discussing critical lenses— such as biblical allusions, archetypes, existential philosophy, and the quest for individual identity—through which students can learn to examine and find meaning in what they read, we will discuss strategies to help students recognize and explain the effects of devices professional writers use to convey meaning in poetry and prose. We will also discuss strategies to encourage students to incorporate such devices in their own writing as they evaluate and revise their compositions. Our approach will be less about what to teach and more about how to teach students to read, analyze, and write effectively, confidently, and independently.
Norma Wilkerson taught AP English Language and Composition and AP English Literature and Composition for 35 years at Fort Worth Country Day School in Fort Worth, Texas, where she was chair of the English Department. She holds a B.A. and an M.A. in English from the University of Texas at Arlington. A consultant for the College Board since 1994, she read the AP English Language Test for nine years and served on the AP English Language Test Development Committee. After retiring in May 2011, Norma continues to work as a College Board Consultant, to mentor AP English Language and Literature teachers, to work with AP English Language and Literature students, and to substitute, short and long term, for friends and fellow AP English teachers who let her teach.