Friday, May 11, 2012

AP Literature: Critical Reflections

54 comments:

Anonymous said...

Ryan Consentino
D Block

Going into the AP Exam, I felt as though I was well equipped to write the question 3 essay because we had reviewed the novels we read very thoroughly and prepared for the essay by writing a number of practice essays. I also felt well equipped for the multiple choice because of all of the practice and review we did with it. I felt well prepared for the prose section as well because we practiced analyzing excerpts and writing about them. I felt slightly less prepared for the poetry section because I feel as though we did not work as much on older poems.
I feel as though I will retain the skills of analysis that I learned this year and will be able to more easily be able to pick apart literature and be able to write successfully about novels.
This year, I feel as though I had a breakthrough on being able to analyze more successfully as beforehand I was not very good at picking out subtle things in writing. I am now able to analyze and dissect a novel with ease.
In the future, I think that more old poems should be reviewed in order to prepare students for all types of poetry. I think that the practice with all of the essays and the multiple choice was very helpful and I think continuing with that will be beneficial to future students. Overall, I feel as though I was well prepared for the exam and that the class was helpful for this exam and will be beneficial in the future.

Anonymous said...

I believe I was well equipped for the AP exam. We thoroughly went over each and every topic to sucess. My writing skills have certainly improved since the beginning of the year and I hope to use the same skills throughout my life. I do not recall having any breakthroughs during the year. I do not know if I actually had one, but I do know that every aspect of my writing skills have improved. I believe that the course plan was well done and a major help in preparation for the AP test. My only idealistic criticism is that some projects/assesments took too long to complete. The Kite Runner section in general took longer than expected and often preocupied too many class periods (TKR powerpoint).

Panos Nikolos

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Anonymous said...

I felt very well-equipped for the AP test, we did so many practice writing samples and multiple choice so there were no surprises on the test. I think all the practice helped me feel better about taking the test; I didn’t stress or worry because I knew what to expect. The one thing I know I will remember the most is format for writing a thesis state, we practiced writing so many times that I don’t think I could ever forget it. I feel as if I had a break through on the multiple choice section, at the beginning of the year I always stressed about multiple choice, but after we practiced and dissected the multiple choice sections I found it simpler and less nerve racking to actually take that section of the test. In the future I would keep all the thesis statement writing, but I would add more poetry because that is the section I felt I had been the least prepared for.

Christina Domaldo

Allie Capprini said...

I feel as though I was very well-equipped when taking the AP test because of all of the practice exams we took over the year. It also helped that we looked through all of the old prompts to better prepare me for what to expect. The biggest help to me on the test was the progressions that we wrote for The Kite Runner because I had basically already written my response for question three before I even saw it, this saved me a lot of time that I was able to put toward writing the other two essays. I think I will retain The Kite Runner the best after this year because of all the time we spent analyzing it, and especially due to the extensive writing for our progressions. I will also remember the writing style that we adapted this year and will most likely use it all through college. I had a breakthrough when it came to successfully composing a body paragraph efficiently and integrating quotes subtly. I also had a breakthrough at the beginning of the year when learning how to write thesis statements and how to find the deeper meaning of the poem or story. For the future, I would definitely have the students write progressions for both 1984 and The Kite Runner because those were very helpful when it came to answering question three. Also, I did not feel as though the power reads helped me much when it came to the AP test, but that may also be my own opinion. One last suggestion I have for next year is maybe practicing the multiple choice section because that was the part of the test I felt least prepared for.

Anonymous said...

I felt very well-equipped for the AP exam this year. In class we did a lot of examples of the different types of essays that were on the test and we took many practice multiple choice packets. I also think that going over different poems in class helped prepare me because you got to see how other people approached the responses in different ways. I think the fact that we wrote thesis statements throughout the year helped me with the writing on the essays. I will retain all of the information about the thesis statements and how to find a shift in poems. I will also retain the story of the Kite Runner because I believe that was the best book that we read all year. One of my breakthroughs was that I was uncomfortable with finding devices inside of poems and after this year, on the exam I found it pretty easy to find and talk about the devices within the responses. I think for the future there should be more emphasis on going over early modern English because the AP exam includes poems from that time period that are very hard to decipher. I think that at the beginning of the year along with Otherwise, you should include going over the prose by Gary Soto. It was very easy to distinguish between the devices and find multiple interpretations for a universal idea.
- Caisey Calabro

Anonymous said...

I felt well-equipped with how to construct thesis statements and the universal idea of excerpts. Basically gave me an outline of the whole essay. I was well-equipped for the exam because we worked a lot on the different perspectives of the exam. This made me confident of everything. I will never forget about the novel “The Kite Runner” because we worked on it for long time and it was very insightful. The multiple choice was the difficult aspect of the exam. I had trouble figuring out the right answer. I could get it to two answers but guessed on which one to choose. In the future, I feel like should do more on poetry with groups. The poetry is effective towards the exam. One idea that could happen is each student selects a poem on their own and analyzes it, after present it to the class. Every student would get the insight of each poem.

Kim Lynch

Anonymous said...

Due to the amount of work that was completed in class and the preparation that lead up to the exam, I would say that I was well-prepared when the day of the test came. Equipped with a multiplicity of quotations from novels, question three options, time-management skills, and knowledge on the multiple facets of a thesis statement, I retained many aspects of the information which was presented throughout the year. I would say that I retained the most knowledge about The Kite Runner, including quotes, themes, shifts, and distinctions, preparing me to compose an in-depth question three analysis. While taking the test, although I did not have a profound breakthrough, I was comforted by my accumulated knowledge of poetry analysis techniques and detection of the universal idea which allowed me to swiftly articulate my thoughts in the limited time allotment. For the future, I would suggest that we spend more doing independent work instead of group projects, but having said that, I believe that completing the style, structure, character, and setting PowerPoints aided in the retention of distinctions and should be completed for each novel.
- Kristen Tenglin

Amanda Sullivan said...

In regards to the AP Literature Exam, I feel that I was very well-equipped for a question 3 esaay. Throughout the course of the year, we went in depth with the books we read, which certainly helped me prepare for a question 3. As for being ill-equipped, I feel that I could have prepared better for the multiple choice section of the exam. This year, I learned how to write adavanced thesis statements, and I believe that this will help me in college next year with my writing. One of my breakthroughs was becoming analytical. When I write an essay, every sentence includes analysis, and before this class, I used to include a lot of plot summary in my writing. You taught me how to be insightful in my writing, and I will definitely keep that with me through college. As much as I enjoyed writing essays in groups, I think for the future you should have students write more essays on their own. I think working in groups is definitely valuable for certain times, but I feel that more independent work will help prepare students better. Also, I think more analysis with difficult poetry will help students in the future. Otherwise, your class was very valuable and I am so glad I took it!

The Toominator said...

Dear Mr. Kefor,
Your class is amazing,and I am not lying because you have taught me so much and i would like to thank you a lot due to the fact that I have honestly never learned so much valuable information in one course, and, thanks to you, I now know how to write massive thesis statements and identify shifts even if they don't exist; You changed my life and have improved my writing so much that it even helps me in other classes although I hated the work you assigned us in the beginning, but then when I completed it, I realized that you did it for a reason, and it is because your assignments are actually worth doing, which is why I felt 100% well equipped for the questions 1,2,and 3 on the AP exam essays, but i do think that next year you should do a multiple choice ape drill because that is what students need the most help with on the exam, but I can say that I have completely retained each novel, story, and other thing you've made us read except for The Road because that book was terrible and I hate to admit, I could not finish it because it was boring and sounded like one giant run on sentence, but anyway, the major breakthrough I made this year was in my thesis statement writing, you are truly a genius and I am completely confident that you will go on to do great things because you are a great teacher and have great skills, which show when you make your work relevant to the class and beneficial to our little feeble brains, and in the future, change nothing, because you are amazing, and although i did not like you in the beginning because i thought you were scary, i have comne to discover that you are actually a panda-like man that cares for his students welbeing and pushes them to the beset of their abilities, so thank you so much Mr. Kefor, I will never forget you.

-Jackie Toomey

Anonymous said...

I felt very well prepared for the Q3 response. Although time consuming, the progressions really helped because it made us thoroughly analyze all aspects of the book, so I had plenty to talk about.
I did not feel well equipped for old poems at all. While I can identify devices, I still don’t have a clue how they function in poems and how they help achieve the universal ideas.
For the future, I would suggest altering the assignment we did for the first power read. I think it might be a good idea to make an outline of points we could make for each bucket, but searching for quotes and presenting them to each other was a waste of time. While I see the intent behind sharing our books, there is no way that anyone actually retained any of it.
Keeping “Otherwise” at the beginning of the year is a good plan because it is a stellar example of underlying depth and reinforced a point made in the summer reading that authors actually do these things on purpose. I really realized this year that most works contain a lot more meaning than first meets the eye and that these decisions are in fact intentional.
-Taryn K.

Peter L. said...

I think that the year has been alright, if not successful. We’ve covered things that have improved my writing, such as making distinctions between assertions in a paragraph and smoother quote integration. With the progressions, it surprised me how much I could keep finding, even after reading and rereading and analyzing “The Kite Runner” for so long, which was a good thing, I suppose. The focus on thesis statements was also pretty nice, but I don’t think that that we should have spent as much time as we did (the length of time spent on this section might just be my overestimation); instead, I think that more time should be spent on test, specifically Questions 1 and 2(That’s not to say we shouldn’t work on said question as much as we did, as I agree with the sentiment that it is one of the harder, if not the hardest, section on the test). The amount of focus on the multiple choice section was fine. Thanks for a great year Mr. Kefor. :)

Peter L. said...

I think that the year has been alright, if not successful. We’ve covered things that have improved my writing, such as making distinctions between assertions in a paragraph and smoother quote integration. With the progressions, it surprised me how much I could keep finding, even after reading and rereading and analyzing “The Kite Runner” for so long, which was a good thing, I suppose. The focus on thesis statements was also pretty nice, but I don’t think that that we should have spent as much time as we did (the length of time spent on this section might just be my overestimation); instead, I think that more time should be spent on test, specifically Questions 1 and 2(That’s not to say we shouldn’t work on said question as much as we did, as I agree with the sentiment that it is one of the harder, if not the hardest, section on the test). The amount of focus on the multiple choice section was fine. Thanks for a great year Mr. Kefor. 

Anonymous said...

Going into the AP test I felt I was well equipped with many devices and strategies that would help me test well. I feel I was best equipped for “Question 3.” The Ape- Drill activity that instructed us to compile a quote bank proved very useful for preparation and carry through on the test. I feel I was most ill equipped for the multiple choice section. When analyzing a piece, there are many different ways to look at it, but when given choices, there is only one way to look at the piece, the right way. I feel as if there was not enough practice learning to extract the one right answer they were looking for.
The thing that seemed to stick with me throughout this year was how to construct a thesis. I think using the poem “Otherwise” not only was a great introduction poem, but a great poem to use for the construction of the thesis.
A major breakthrough I feel I made this year was with analytical writing. The thesis structure, and your explanation of what to include in an analytical essay all came together and I was able to figure out how to construct an essay that flowed and wasn’t merely pieced together.
The content in the course was all planned out thoroughly and carefully. The order, in which concepts were taught, poetry, prose, question 3, is definitely something that worked and I think should be kept for next year. One thing I would like to see for the future would be more multiple choice practices with answers given.

Emily B.

Eric Forman said...

My Reflection
D Block

After entering into this class, I realized the focus of what we were learning when compared to last year, AP English Language, was definitely different. This class itself exposed my weakness more so than last year as it focused more on the obvious comprehension of many different works; having to illustrate the deeper meaning of poems, stories, etc, which completely discouraged me from believing I'd do well in the class.

However, I surprised myself and learned quickly how to analyze the different works by using what you taught me: Focusing on the title, reading the work (sometimes twice), and determining if the universal idea is discrete within it or overt. I learned to better read between the lines and get a worthy interpretation without spending too much time on the work. Yet, I do feel like I may have been ill-equipped with time management, despite the superfluous and various works we have worked on.

Yet, I feel like I can be a different type of writer if I choose to do so. I was never that good at writing structurally, since I am a more creative writer, but due to the assistance and teachings in your class, I can now successfully write a normal essay without it being grating.

I am thankful for this class and hope that my writing will on be enhanced with greater teachings throughout my college career. As I write more and more, I hope my love of it will increase amidst the obviously mundane literature that I must encounter.

Anonymous said...

For the AP English Literature exam I felt very prepared after all the hard work we have been doing all year. When I began writing the essays all I could hear was Mr. Kefor's voice in my head telling me how to approach everything, and whether or not my thesis statement was good. Although he inadvertently took over my conscience by insinuating an intriguing web of intricacies, it was definitely super helpful for test time. Over the course of the year I had a major breakthrough with my thesis statements and conclusions because of how much work we always had to do for them. For your future classes I think that you should tackle thesis statements the same exact way that you had this year, and I also think that a little more multiple choice practice couldn't hurt :)

Anonymous said...

Allie Zelinski

September 2011, the first day of AP English Literature. I didn't even know what to expect since I had struggled so much through last year's AP English Language. I was nervous to see what kind of crazy assingments I would have to cry over finshing. As the year went on I realized that I was learning and preparing for the test without freaking out too much about the work load. I felt like I was pretty ready for the AP test. I feel like the essays were my strong points. I did not feel that good about the multiple choice though. Even though we did a lot of work with the multiple choice practice I felt like it was always my weak point. One thing that I felt was not worth doing was the project we did to research the times of literature. I felt like it didn't really help me much in preparing for the test. I specifically could not recall the different dates and what the times were like to help me understand the poem or writing better. I really liked the flashcards we made for the quotes to prepare for the question three. I personally used the quotes that I was able to memorize to use in my essay. I think the progressions were tough and a lot of work but I think it was really good practice for the question three. I think I had a change in the way I write for the poems and prose parts too. I would definitely say that my writing for those two parts were my breakthroughs. I think for the future I would honestly keep a lot of the stuff we did this year. I think it helped me a lot. Although it was a lot of work and it was challenging at times I think it all helped me out in getting ready for the AP test. I am actually looking forward to getting my score this year because I think I did well on this test.

Anonymous said...

As much as I hate analyzing literature, I actually felt well prepared for this test. The progressions, as awful as they were, helped out a lot with question three. Having practiced question three dozens of times made it very easy to answer on the test. For question 1, however, I feel we did not go over a lot of older poetry and it was more difficult than I had anticipated. Definitely everything from this year helped. I feel like my thesis statements improved astronomically and I actually felt confident on writing conclusions which I have never really felt confident about. I still do not enjoy analyzing literature or poetry but I do feel I am better at it.
Stephen Hynes

Hayley Beaucage said...

Looking back on the AP exam, I feel as though I was well-equipped in the majority of the areas on the test. I was 100% equipped on writing thesis statements for all the questions, due to practicing them so much during class. The only parts I feel I wasn’t well- equipped on was the multiple choice questions, in terms of I felt as though I may have fallen for the distracters. With the poem on the exam, I was a little lost because it was an older poem. So in class we always did that type of poem together, so facing it on my own was kind of a struggling process. In terms of retention, the one main thing I remember most from this class is the process of how to construct a proper thesis statement. The main thing that I learned in this class that will help me the most in the future I feel is constructing a major paper from smaller progressions. The progressions we did on The Kite Runner helped a lot when it came to the test, since we went so in depth on analyzing the book. I feel as though we maybe should have done that with the other books like 1984, maybe not so in depth as we did with The Kite Runner, but we should have gone a little bit deeper in analyzing the book. I could have used more work on writing conclusion statements, just because I feel as though my conclusions are the weakest points of my writing. For the future I would continue doing the progressions on the books, but try to do them with the other books as well. Mostly in class, I learned a lot about constructing thesis statements, organizing my writing, multiple choice, and the exam essays. I wouldn’t change much about this class besides focusing more on conclusions, and doing progressions on other books.

Scott Coleman said...

The group that went on wednesday had a great concept for their modernization. The play definitly was too long, but Amanda had a great southern accent. "Fry ma hide" was classic. I think mastery of the script could have been better.

Scott Coleman said...

I loved the school setting with the prom. It worked really well in parallel to Tartuffe. If they moved around more and acted with a little more feeling it would have been better. But the script was very well written.

Kendyl Cutler said...

Well obviously at first for our class we were honors, so I didn't expect to switch into AP like I did. It was a little stressfull, but it was helpful in the longrun. I got thesis statements down so good now. Since we wrote so many essays, they seem pretty easy to me. They don't take me as long to do as they use to. I liked all of the books that we read. They were all wicked good and the projects we had to do with them were helpful, even if The Kite Runner stuff was stressfull. I will definatly rememeber how to incorporate these things when I'm writing essays in college and wherever else I'll need them. I was well prepared for the exam, but while I was doing the exam I felt it was very hard. I try my best and I'm just hoping that I get a 3 or more.

Hannah Lavendier said...

Overall, I felt well prepared for the AP test, and, in turn, I have confidence that I passed with at least a score of 3. I was able to retain quotes from The Kite Runner which greatly benefitted me while writing my response to question 3. Additionally, I was able to quickly write a thesis statement since we practiced them so often in class. While answering the multiple choice I had the breakthrough that the multiple choice weren't as difficult as I anticipated. For next year, I suggest more out of class reading to create more time in class for other productive activities. I would continue the power reads- the second power read consisting of only the essay was more effective and reasonable than the first power read. All in all, the work that our class did this year successfully prepared us for all aspects of the AP exam.

Amanda S. said...

1. I felt that I was well-equipped to write the Question 3 prompt. This is because we prepared so well for the Kite Runner by having thorough discussions and writing progressions. The only think I felt really ill-equipped for was the prose prompt.

2. I remebered The Kite Runner really well due to the efficieny in which we went over it. In the future I hope to take my ability to write thesis statment and essays and use them in college.

3. I had a breakthrough on the poetry promt for question 1. I first read the poem and skipped it because it was too intimidating. When I came back to it, I had to read it legit 5 or 6 times, but then I got it! All of a sudden I realized what the poem was all about.

4. NO OFFENSE, but the Ape Drill did NOT help me at all. The only aspect that was the least bit helpful was writing the progressions for The Kite Runner because I was able to use that novel for Question 3. The thesis writing, quote memorization, and literary index cards did nothing for me. All it did was make me hate AP English. So for the future, I suggest keeping the Ape Drill much more limited.

Anonymous said...

Evan DaSilva, C Block

I never would have thought I would put myself through hell like I did over the past year in AP Literature. I learned a lot in this class, but it wasnt easy to handle at many moments. I felt that i was advanced:
1.) Thesis statements
2.) analysis of prose and literature
3.) Realizing my true potential

Things that I was not so advanced on:
1.) Time Management
2.) Poetic Analysis
3.) Taking you seriously

More time for power reads, less time with The Kite Runner!! Good Job in your first year captain

Anonymous said...

Throughout Mr.Kefor’s class there have been many things to surprise me. I have learned that to become a well equipped student you need to be ready for a heavy workload, and to dedicate a lot of time to achieve in AP Eng. Lit. Procrastinating is the enemy, and will kick you in the butt later. Your effort truly reflects your grade. A prepared student would read every day, take diligent notes, and make connections between their life and material daily, but not everyone is prepared. I have learned and retained many truths throughout the novels and poems read during the course. Real life is in every novel, even in works of fictions. In “The Kite Runner” Amir’s search for redemption mirrors many people’s search for personal salvation. A major breakthrough is that work is truly rewarding. Over the years I have appreciated a good job, but it is much more rewarding to see growth in yourself, which this class has, lead me to experience. The ideal for the future is to hold on the skills I have learned, and to enhance and increase my knowledge. -Meredith Davern

Emily said...

As stressful as this class was, it was helpful in general for all my reading and writing skills. I definitely improved on my thesis writing which I was always confused about before. I can also write five paragraph essays really fast which will of course be helpful in the future. I would have liked to go through The Kite Runner a little quicker because I feel like it was too over analyzed. The progressions were sort of ridiculous in some aspects and I feel as though they would be more useful in small doses. I did feel as though the class was great though, and I was ready for the exam when the time came. Despite the abundance of work, I respected the class a lot because I respect the work you do as a teacher. Your enthusiasm about the assignments made it bearable for me to complete. You are a great teacher and I feel as though you have done an excellent job this year.
Emily Boockoff

Chengqi Gao said...

I didn't know what to expect, but I wasn't too worried. Turned out fine. The class was fun. At times there was a lot of work to be done. AP test was better than I expected. I feel as if we spent more classtime doing poetry than other works of literature. I liked the Kite Runner, the movie was good.

David A. said...

Due to the amount of work leading up to the AP exam, I felt as though I was well-prepared for the test. I felt very confident while writing my poetry and question three essays; however, I felt as though we did not do as much to prepare for the prose section. It was still very easy to decipher, I just wish we had worked on that section more. Although I felt as though I struggled with the multiple choice section, I think we definitely did enough to prepare for it. There is no way to study for that section; it is just difficult in general. Overall, I think the preparation before the test, including the Ape Drill, were very helpful.

Ashley B. said...

In terms of preparation, I did feel very prepared for the AP English test. I was confident in most aspects of the exam but there are a few things that I would have liked more practice with. Firstly, I felt as though I would have liked more independent multiple choice work. I understand the rationale behind the group multiple choice work but on the test you only have yourself to work through the question with. I also feel as though the amount of prose we analyzed was a bit lacking not only in quantity but also in diversity. The prose that we analyzed in preparation for the test was very setting or style driven and the prompt on the exam was character driven. And lastly, after writing the first poetry prompt I felt rather drained. Some type of stamina exercise would be good so future students will not run out of steam after one essay. Other than that, your course did a wonderful job of preparing me for thew AP exam.

Hannah C. said...

Going into this year, I was a bit nervous but by the time I took the exam I wasn't worried at all. I felt very well prepared for question 3 especially. The Kite Runner was perfect for pretty much any question 3 prompts so you should absolutely continue to focus on it! I think maybe you should focus on older poetry and sonnets more? I was a bit uneasy when we got the sonnet for question one. Maybe also do a bit more of individual multiple choice and how exactly to form a conclusion. I loved that we got to do the power reads! It was great to learn about other people's books and being able to read pretty much whatever we wanted.

sarapish said...

Mr. Kefor,

First off, you helped bring the course to life with your enthusiasm and quirkiness which I appreciate.

I felt rather prepared for the exam. Recommendations I would have for future years are to invest more time in older poetry, working on multiple choice individually, and writing three essays in succession.

I thought the powerreads were really helpful, I would suggest that because these books are novels that we will read and use on the AP exam we should be able to use books from the past that are of literary merit and that we loved.

Please keep your thesis process the same but try to focus on paragraphs, distinctions and how to write a good conclusion. We basically never discussed how to conclude our essays.


Keep the work load as it was because while it was DEFINITELY stressful it was always worthwhile and helpful.

Thank you for a wonderful year!

Anonymous said...

Chris Robinson

Although stressful for the majority of the time, the class was still at times. I was able to increase my writing skills in analyzing, which is something I look highly upon now, especially since it has helped me in Poetry of Song class. Writing was definately my biggest breakthrough of this year as well. The only problem I had was with multiple choice. Even though we went over some stuff in class, I wasn't totally able to grasp everything.

Anonymous said...

Dan Kehoe
A Block
During my stint as an AP English student in you class I encountered many new techniques that have helped me improve my writing. The constant thesis writing definitely translated to a good jump start to the essays on the AP exam. For most part I felt well-equipped for the exam, except on conclusions, I was unsure on how to wrap up my essays and I felt we never spent very much time on them.In leaving this class I will walk out a better analyzer and an improved writer in terms of vocabulary, structure and content. I plan on using my breakthrough of transitions where I was able to lead into new paragraphs to make my wwriting flow better. These techniques I have obtained will help me through college and my future endeavors.

Anonymous said...

Dan Kehoe A BLock

Also, in the future, start out easy and with a lot of thesis statements like this year. The one thing I would change is to work on the conclusions more. It would make everyone's writing complete because the amount of work we did with the thesis and body paragraphs helped greatly, and with a good conclusion, the essay would be perfected.

Anonymous said...

I felt like I was very well-equipped for writing thesis statements. We wrote a million of them so I was bound to getting better in that aspect of writing. I felt ill-equipped for writing the question 1 prompt; I dont know why but I just was.I will try to hold onto writing a good thesis and writing good analytical sentences. I had a breakthrough in really understanding the book The Kite Runner due to all the progressions we wrote. I will try to write very analytical sentences in the future.


Brian Loud

Brianna Barrows said...

When you first prompted the class with the idea of making our honors class an AP class, I wasn’t too enthusiastic about it, but it soon grew on me. I soon came to realization that maybe this college level course would benefit me in the end and now that I’ve gone through many 40 minute prep essays and multiple choice samples, I say I truly did benefit from them. Even through the procrastination of all the assignments we got assigned and the overwhelmed stress that grew upon me, the lengthy, hard projects helped prepare me for the three hour long test. As treacherous as the APE Drill was and seemed, it benefited me with helping me remember quotes that I used on the exam and how to go about answering each question. The selected books you chose for us to read got me well-equipped to write a full detailed response for question 3, more directed to The Kite Runner, and give me the satisfaction of getting a good grade. After all the preparation and hard work for the AP exam, I feel as though I was fully prepared and knew what to expect when the test was brought before me.

Brianna Barrows said...

When you first prompted the class with the idea of making our honors class an AP class, I wasn’t too enthusiastic about it, but it soon grew on me. I soon came to realization that maybe this college level course would benefit me in the end and now that I’ve gone through many 40 minute prep essays and multiple choice samples, I say I truly did benefit from them. Even through the procrastination of all the assignments we got assigned and the overwhelmed stress that grew upon me, the lengthy, hard projects helped prepare me for the three hour long test. As treacherous as the APE Drill was and seemed, it benefited me with helping me remember quotes that I used on the exam and how to go about answering each question. The selected books you chose for us to read got me well-equipped to write a full detailed response for question 3, more directed to The Kite Runner, and give me the satisfaction of getting a good grade. After all the preparation and hard work for the AP exam, I feel as though I was fully prepared and knew what to expect when the test was brought before me.

Anonymous said...

Originally we were honors and I was a little nervous switching to
AP because it would be my first AP class. English is not my strong point so I had a bit of trouble. I was definitely well equipped with writing a thesis statement, which I can do very quickly now. However, I felt ill-equipped for the multiple choice and that I could have prepared myself more. I will always remember how to produce a thesis statement because of the many that we practiced. My breakthrough was being able to write an analytical essay rather than just basically summarizing. The progressions about The Kite Runner really helped me on question three and being able to analyze the book. I would definitely work more with multiple choice and breaking down the questions to identify the distinctions. Some assignments were too much and took a lot of time. Overall, I felt that I was well prepared for the exam.

Kristen MacGray

cmb24 said...

Overall, I found this class to be one of the most beneficial classes to take, not only do you get the experience of taking an AP exam but the tools taught throughout the course, prepare you for what is to come in years down the road. One thing I felt fully-equipped for was the poem and the prose open responses, not only did I know how to write a full blown thesis that structured my entire essay, but we did them enough throughout the year to know how to analyze pieces of writing in a timely fashion. Something I will retain for years to come is just the overall writing aspect of the course, becoming a good writer is key in any field of work, so to have a course that fulfills those tasks, and gets kids prepared for their futures, noting is more beneficial.

I at times felt overwhelmed and stressed due to the amount of work that was given throughout this course, but in the end I found it to all be extremely helpful and I know it is materials that I will use and build off of, for the rest of my life

Anonymous said...

Stephen Burrill
I believe that I am well equipped to analyze and write essays on various topics such as poetry and novels. I am well equipped to create strong thesis statements that make it easy to transition into writing a five paragraph essay. On the other hand, I am not well equipped for creating conclusions, because I feel as if my conclusions are often weak and non-supportive. I also am not equipped to “power through” an analysis when I don’t understand it the first time I read through it. When I read something and don’t understand it at first I get discouraged and immediately believe that I cannot crack the deeper meaning. In terms of retention, I will continue to carry the ability of creating effective thesis statements. This ability will further help me create better essays and help me find the golden nuggets of insight. I will also be able to connect different types of literature together. The ability to connect a book to music and other literature is a very valuable and I will continue to carry these skills on throughout college. I had a breakthrough this year, and that breakthrough was that I could finally create an efficient thesis statement. Before this year, I had no idea how to properly construct a thesis, and during the beginning of the year I used to take twenty minutes just trying to find the right adjective to describe my device. Now that I have had a years worth of thesis writing I believe I am able to create splendid thesis statements. I also learned how to create a well written analysis. For the future, I have an intriguing idea that could either fail miserably, or work to perfection. In terms of working with poetry, Instead of going from easy poetry to increasingly harder, I would just stick with easy poetry all year. This is not to simply make life easier; there is in fact some deep thinking behind this. My belief is as follows: the people that are good at analyzing poetry and writing essays will get great grades regardless of whether or not you increase the difficulty of the poetry. My focus is more on the kids that may not be as equipped to tackle the poetry section. So I believe that if you give the kids easy poetry all year, you will give them a false sense of success. The kid’s egos will be so large that they believe they can tackle any amount of poetry. In fact, perhaps you would like to lie to the children and tell them that this poetry they are doing is impossible and hard, even if its pretty basic. This false sense of hope will allow the kids to believe that they can do it, and I believe that the mind is often what gets in the way of qualifying scores. Kids often think they cant do it so they mentally defeat themselves before they even start. If you give them false hope I believe you may see a slight increase in success, but that’s just my crazy thinking.

JustinFalkeComicSpirit said...

I thought the group that went today did a very good job on modernizing the play. The characterization was spot on and very good. Each character played their role very well. I liked the edgy language that was used throughout the course of the play. I found it to be very funny. It made the play more lively as well. All and all, the play was great. Good job guys!

Katie Durst said...

Dear Mr. Kefor,
Overall, I found that this class has definitely increased my skills in reading and writing, as it made me well equipped for the AP English Exam. Thanks to you, I now know how to write more organized and analyzed essays and thesis statements, without spending too much time on writing one. The multiple choice practices have increased my chances on doing well on the AP exam, and helped me in getting them done faster, without spending too much time on one question. I usually spend way too much time on reading and writing because it naturally takes me longer to grasp and analyze than other students. I’ll admit, I was pretty nervous when our Honors class switched to AP, but I feel more confident on how well I did on the exam than I did at the beginning of the year. I enjoyed the books we read this year and felt that they are all extremely useful for each of the Question #3 prompts of the exam. I absolutely loved The Kite Runner, and I liked 1984, but I really wasn’t a fan of The Road, nor did I even finish reading it. And I’ll admit that I wasn’t a fan of the massive work load, especially for the APE Drill, but I realize that this has definitely prepared me for college, as I know the work will be just as tough. My skills in writing have been beyond excellence since you started teaching us how to write thesis statements. No matter how much I hated writing essays every day, it made me more relaxed as far as preparing for the exam. The mock exam was also a huge help because I was able to understand what I was doing wrong, and I figured out how much time to spend on each question. For next year, I would definitely practice more on the multiple choice section, such as taking multiple choice tests for each of the books, rather than just writing essays. I would also focus on analyzing poetry. I definitely spent more time on Question #1 of the essay than I did with the rest of them, because the poem took me longer to analyze. My point is I appreciate how much you have taught us so that each of us would me more equipped for the exam, no matter how stressed I was with this class. Thank you so much for all that you did over the course of the year, as I know this will strongly support me in college, and even the rest of my life.
-Katie Durst :D

Anonymous said...

Danielle MacDermott
C Block

I felt well prepared for the AP Exam because I learned how to structure my essays better than I use to. I like how Mr.Kefor taught us how to structure our thesis statements because it makes me feel more well equipped to write the rest of my essay. I feel like my week point was the multiple choice because I struggled getting the idea of the text and choosing an answer. I believe that the tools I learned this year have made me grow as a writer and better prepared me for the future.

Anonymous said...

Looking back on the AP test, I think that this class prepared me very well for the test. You touched upon each aspect of the test and tried very hard to come up with creative assignments to reinforce the skills we needed to pass the test.
We practiced multiple choice, and the different prompts, prose and poetry, but more imprtantly, you gave us the basics we needed. At the beginning of the year, we did more than learn how to create a thesis statement, we attacked them. We slowly built up the skills we needed to be great writers, and be successful on the test. This class has taught me to be a more efficient writer and much more.
To address any critiques, I would say that more concrete due dates would help everyone. When the due dates were blurry, we'd slack off, I know that isn't your fault, but I think it would be beneficial for your students. But as to course material, I think you covered the skills we needed for the test. You even timed us on the prompts, which help tremendously, because it put us in the test scenario.
Overall, I think you did a great job building this course and tailoring this course to give us the skills we needed to succeed.

Anonymous said...

alex gallant
c-block

going into the ap exam, i felt a little nervous about the essays, but once I saw what the essays were, i felt more comfortable with them because of all of the practice with essays we have done all year. i also felt like i was well-prepared for the multiple choice, I didn't feel like there were any questions that were very hard. overall i felt like all of the practice we did in class paid off in the ap exam.

Melanie Huynh said...

Despite the subtle animosity that I have felt towards you throughout the year, I can honestly say you prepared me very well for the exam. Enduring all the practice exams and Ape Drill made me want to fling myself out a window, but I’ll admit that it helped me…sorta. If I could make a suggestion, I would have liked to take a class or two to really focus on how to identify universal ideas in poems. Perhaps you could have given us a list of common universal ideas for different time periods or had us compile ones ourselves as an assignment. Another suggestion would be to not force the progressions so much. Although it was helpful, perhaps you could make it a little less extensive. Nevertheless, you are a good teacher and very reasonable when approached appropriately.

Melanie Huynh said...

Despite the subtle animosity that I have felt towards you throughout the year, I can honestly say you prepared me very well for the exam. Enduring all the practice exams and Ape Drill made me want to fling myself out a window, but I’ll admit that it helped me…sorta. If I could make a suggestion, I would have liked to take a class or two to really focus on how to identify universal ideas in poems. Perhaps you could have given us a list of common universal ideas for different time periods or had us compile ones ourselves as an assignment. Another suggestion would be to not force the progressions so much. Although it was helpful, perhaps you could make it a little less extensive. Nevertheless, you are a good teacher and very reasonable when approached appropriately.

Anonymous said...

Brittany Harnedy
C Block


After taking the AP exam, I am very thankful for all of the assessments and multiple choice practice that you made us complete in class in a given amount of time. I felt over prepared, if that's possible, going into the exam and did not need to rush any of my answers or responses. I was able to successfully finish 3 essays within only 2 hours and felt confident about the quality of my writing. Question 1, although more difficult to analyze than the others, I also felt well equipped to write. I feel as though the few old poems we have analyzed was enough to help me write a good essay. For Question 3 I ended up having too much to write about due to all of the preparation in class, but I was able to pick and choose the most important parts of my analysis.

Throughout the year, I feel as though my breakthrough has been finding the universal idea and analyzing deeper.

In the future, I think the Ape drill should not be given all at one time. It ended up not being that horrible and time consuming of an assignment but giving a whole month worth of work at one time is overwhelming and stressed many people out.

Cassie H. said...

This course honestly wasn't as overwhelming as I expected it to be. It was a breath of fresh air after AP English Langauge. I felt well prepared for the exam, although in class, I didn't even notice that I was learning, and strengthening my writing and analysis. No assignment we did was unreasonable, and for each one we had an appropriate lengh of time to complete it. I first felt intimidated by immidiately being timed in my assessments, but I grew more comfortable and prepared for it. All that we learned and discussed in class was applicable to the AP test and to the future, and I feel more comfortable going to college after taking this course, regardless of whether or not I pass the exam.

Anonymous said...

AP English was way more stressful than I wanted or expected for my senior year of English. On one hand, I feel like it will be really helpful for me in the future especially with writing in college. But on the other hand, I still probably would've rather stayed in the honors level class. This class did help me with time management with writing, something I've been slow at in the past. During the AP exam, I finished all of the essays with time to spar. I felt a break through with thesis statements this year. The past two years of English have not been very good, they've been almost too easy, and we did not review thesis statements in either. After this class, I feel comfortable going to college and I feel like I will be able to handle much of the writing.

Amanda Murphy

Anonymous said...

Matt Kelley
C-Block

I was nervous going from a level 1 English into in AP English but taking your class has made me confident in my essay writing. I didn't enjoy everything you gave us as practice, but it did help a lot. I fell like I definitely got a three or above on my AP exam. Your class also helped do real well in some of my English electives.My favorite part of the year was reading 1984; that is by far the best book I have ever read. I plan to read it many times again and hopefully write future college reports about it. After writing so many universal ideas and using "sexy" quotes; I now have a completely different viewpoint of books and poetry and I understand them a lot better. Thank you for all of the experience and the great year.

Anonymous said...

Erin Chancey
C Block

Going into the AP Exam, I felt as though I was really prepared for it. We have been doing open responses and multiple choice packets all year so I was not worried at all going into the test. Before this year, I hated poetry. I could not analyze a poem to save my life and now I feel more comfortable with poetry and feel as though I'm even good at it now. During the AP test when I got to the poetry section I was almost excited because I knew I would be able to analyze it well. Also, I am now able to write an exceptional thesis statement where before I was completely unable to do so entirely. Throughout the year I've become better and better at identifying shifts, establishing the main idea of a piece of writing, and analyzing at a whole new level. Overall, I think this class has been extremely beneficial for all my classes and I fel more prepared for college level writing and I'm not worried about writing papers in college anymore.

Anonymous said...

Joel Sitte
C-Block
This year in English class prepared me not only for the AP Exam but also prepared me to face the ever approaching challenge that is college. No longer do I concern myself with what I will do for the 10+ page papers. I attribute my ease of mind to the Progressions essay assignment. I now know how to approach these monumental tasks with a minimum of stress. I would suggest, however, that you rethink the deadline structure to prevent procrastination. Furthermore, consider eliminating the sentence requirement, but have a “total length requirement”. Have people work to achieve between 8 and 10 pages. It is not too much but it is enough to reinforce the habits needed for college.
I feel as though I can analyze works of art of all forms more effectively because of this class. I applaud you and your ability to instruct. Thank you for a great Year Mr. Kefor. I now leave you with this traditional Gaelic blessing. I find it most appropriate for the parting of ways.
May the road rise up to meet you.
May the wind be always at your back.
May the sun shine warm upon your face;
the rains fall soft upon your fields and until we meet again,
may God hold you in the palm of His hand.