Hamilton’s English Department works to develop student’s skills in the following areas:
- Reading Literature from novels to short stories, poems, plays, and essays.
- Reading Informational Text in current events and research texts
- Writing, including composing and revising narratives, analyses, argumentative essays, and expository pieces
- Speaking and Listening during discussions and presentations
- Language, including academic terms and vocabulary
According to the College Board, AP Seminar is a foundational course that engages students in cross-curricular conversations that explore the complexities of academic and real-world topics and issues by analyzing divergent perspectives. Using an inquiry framework, students practice reading and analyzing articles, research studies, and foundational, literary, and philosophical texts; listening to and viewing speeches, podcasts, and personal accounts; and experiencing artistic works and performances. Students learn to synthesize information from multiple sources, develop their own perspectives in written essays, and design and deliver oral and visual presentations, both individually and as part of a team. Ultimately, the course aims to equip students with the power to analyze and evaluate information with accuracy and precision in order to craft and communicate evidence-based arguments (The College Board).
AP Seminar is the first part of the AP Capstone diploma program from the College Board that equips students with the independent research, collaborative teamwork, and communication skills that are increasingly valued by colleges. The big ideas and learning objectives in the AP Capstone program reflect the core academic skills needed for college, career, and life readiness identified by leading educational organizations (The College Board).
AP Research is a student-driven course in which students pursue their own areas of interest and inquiry. Throughout the year, students develop an original research question and design and conduct a study to answer this question. AP Research is the second course in the AP Capstone program after AP Seminar and is required for students looking to earn an AP Capstone Diploma. The AP test for this course is an academic research paper and presentation in which students introduce their question and situate it in previous research as well as explain and justify their study’s method and results. This course is for students who have big questions about their world and are interested in finding their own answers.
AP Language and Composition
AP Language and Composition is a class that will prepare you for nearly every other class you will take in later life. It teaches you how to be a critical thinker and reader, and how to communicate your thoughts and reasons in writing and speaking. We will primarily read non-fiction, focusing on tying the past to current events. This is a college-level course, and you will practice writing on demand, under a time limit, reading and understanding other’s arguments, and prepare to take the AP test in May. More importantly, it will prepare you for the rigorous writing and reading that other courses will assume you already know how to do.