Language & Composition

Mr. Eure | Brewster High School

Summer Salvo

This is the website for AP English Language and Composition. Over the next two months, I will introduce you to this course, my approach, and your peers. We’ll get to the summer assignment after we dispense with a few administrative tasks.

Register for this site by scrolling to the bottom of this page and following the obvious directions. Use your BHS Gmail accounts; if you haven’t ever accessed that Gmail account, use our Resources page to log in. Registering with a personal email address is fine, but you will have to switch over in the fall to your school account.

Because most of you are digital natives, the rest of the site layout will be obvious as it evolves over the summer; in fact, explaining to you how to navigate a website is almost condescending. I will only note that longer posts will be broken up into two sections: the opening section, which is visible on the front page of the site, and the bulk of the post, which you can access by clicking “Read more of this post.”

Be sure you’re familiar with the rest of the grammar of a post like this. Note the category and tags, which appear at the bottom; categories are broader (e.g.Assignments or Notes), whereas tags are more specific and often reference details or patterns (e.g., summer atrophy and beach reading). Categories are much more useful, organizationally speaking. Tags tend to be used for emphasis or humor.

As you read, click on any hyperlinks that you see. Hyperlinks will provide you with definitions, further research, and context, making them indispensable parts of every post. For instance, clicking on digital natives in paragraph three gives you the definition of the phrase, and clicking the abbreviation e.g. in paragraph four opens a new site that explains the difference between e.g. and i.e. (through the sometimes grammaticaster at The Oatmeal). Even in that last parenthetical, you have three links that offer

  1. a link to another post, this one about semicolons;
  2. the etymology of the word grammar, which includes the excellent word grammaticaster; and
  3. the main page of The Oatmeal, so that I’ve cited my source directly.

The point is this: You must read these entries very, very carefully, clicking on every link and working your way through whatever’s on the other side. Part of our metacognitive focus this year will be how you build atop this hypertextual substructure; you may as well start paying attention to it now. You’ll also, with any luck, learn a few things you didn’t expect.

That’s the end of introductions. Below you will find a copy of your summer assignment, plus copies of each of the texts you must read and respond to. Use this as your starting point:

Except for the last two, these texts are also available in this Google Docs folder. Atmosphere’s song is uploaded to YouTube, and Carr’s argument is dependent enough on his use of hyperlinks to give you only the original article from The Atlantic.

Over the next two weeks, I’ll add a few more introductory posts and resources, and then we’ll reconvene on July 1 to look at Didion’s “Notebook” essay.

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