AP Literature and Composition

Floyd E. Kellam High School

Advanced Placement Literature and Composition

2022 Summer Resources ~ Mrs. Kathy Welch 

Email:  [email protected]


Hi, Future AP Literature Students!

Welcome to AP Literature and Composition!  What follows is a list of activities that comprise your Summer Resources.  While this is an OPTIONAL activity, it may give you a flavor for what’s to come and make your senior year a little less overwhelming. Read it over, and if you have any questions, contact me by email. I am really excited to be working with you next fall. :)


One thing I want to say before you continue - - I want to encourage you to read on your own this summer. Read the newspaper (in hand or online); read magazines; read books you enjoy; read poetry; read at the beach; read on your break from work; read before you go to sleep.  I promise you that if you read, good things will happen!  Your vocabulary will increase and become more sophisticated; you will recognize allusions and idioms more readily; and your writing will improve immeasurably.  So do it!  Read!

Read Tim O’Brien’s novel, The Things They Carried

I have a number of these available for you to borrow. If you don’t get one, you can get it from the library, borrow one, buy one on Amazon, OR wait until September 7th.  Everyone will get the novel at that time.

In order to introduce you to the kind of reading we will do, I would like you to begin thinking about the idea of literature as a made thing.  By this I mean that the writers of great fiction do more than tell a story by simply relaying information about characters and events.  They deliberately guide us through fictional representations of worlds, making choices about how to tell their story in order to highlight certain aspects of our own human experience, and present us with the questions that are most important to us as human beings.

Keeping this made thing in mind, we will explore a work of fiction based on the experiences of one writer who served in the Vietnam War.  Tim O’Brien’s The Things They Carried is a unique collection of fictional episodes based on his characters’ experiences before, during, and after the war.  While each episode can be read and experienced separately, together they form this powerful contemporary novel.

As you read, look for things that puzzle you, disturb you, or resonate with you.  If you decide to buy the book, mark it directly. Ask questions in the margins; underline things that interest you. Look for patterns. If you are using one of Kellam’s books and don’t plan on purchasing it, use post-its or create a running response log. Read actively and enjoy the book.  

Finally, rest and relax!  Enjoy your break!  It’s nearly SENIOR year!