Semester 2 Reflection

In the beginning of first semester, I remember feeling very unsure about my literary abilities. I scored very low on the AP Literature MC and my first couple of essays. Especially, for Q1 poetry prompts. I had an immense amount of trouble understanding the meaning of the poems, and remember going to Mrs. Brayko for help. Even then, I couldn’t analyse the poems she asked me to try to understand. After spending a lot of time being exposed to different poems from a variety of authors and TPCASTT’s, I have since gotten the ability to understand most type of poems. I felt confident going into the AP test and this has also translated into my in class writings. Furthermore, I feel like my writing abilities, specifically how to analyse essay passages, have improved immensely. After writing and re-writing many different essays, I now feel confident writing about any topic given.

I’m also proud of my reading skills. I have to admit that in Sophomore year I didn’t really read the books that were assigned. In Junior year I got better at this, but it is especially this year that I read every single book assigned. This is because I had the ability to choose the book that I wanted to read for the given unit. For example, I always wanted to read Shakespeare but was always too daunted to attempt to do so. Mostly because of how pre-20th century texts often confuse me. These books have enabled me to analyse Q2 prompts more accurately as well as the way I tackle my essays.

Overall, I feel like I’ve improved as a writer in every sense. My writing, reading, and analysis skills have gotten so much better. I can see the improvement not only in my rubric scores but how much more confident I feel.

Heart of the Matter Reflection

In my opinion, getting to the “heart of the matter” is delving into the deeper meaning of the novel, series, or play. They mostly discuss universal themes such as racism or moral dilemmas. It sheds light on what the authors deem important to them and in the time period they are focusing on. For example, in “Master Harold and the Boys” by Athol Fugard, Fugard focuses on racism in order to shed light on the issue in a unique way. In his case, he brought the perspectives of black servants who have a strong bond with their Master.

Literature can tackle both happy and dark topics in the “heart of the matter”. For instance, in “Death of a Salesman” by Arthur Miller, Biff has unconditional love for his father. He gives up his American dream in order to satisfy his father’s life long dream. Biff even does this despite knowing about the affair his father had.

Q1 In Class Writing

I have to say that I was really proud when I received the feedback from my essay. Especially since I have always struggled with the poetry passage analysis. This is mainly because I wasn’t able to properly analyse and comprehend the deeper meaning of the poem. In fact, I remember going to Mrs. Brayko for help first semester asking for help. Thus, I’m really happy with the progress I made. This is the highest score I’ve received in this class and I’m glad it’s in the essay prompt that I struggled with the most.


Q3 In Class Writing

I am really happy about my work for this essay, because I’ve written about “Night” by Elie Wiesel twice beforehand and this is the highest I’ve ever scored. In fact in the previous two times, I received a 4. In this essay, I received a high 7. I think it’s because of how many Q3 prompts I’ve practiced as well as feeling more comfortable with the prompt.

Below is the rubric and the comments:

U3 AP Q2 Revision

This rewrite was for the in class Q2 writing about a Hamlet passage. In this essay, I focused on refining my analysis of the metaphor about worms. I feel like this essay is a good indicator of how my writing has progressed for Q2 writing.

Link to rewrite:


Novel Lecture

For my novel lecture I discussed the play “Master Harold and the Boys” by Athol Fugard. My 3 selected themes were racism, dance, and character development. Mrs. Brayko randomly selected dance, and even though it was my weakest topic, I still felt like I did my best. I think I started out a bit nervous in the beginning, but that quickly faded. My classmates said that I sounded confident, so I’m really happy that my delivery ended up well.

Here are the comments from my peers:



My notecard for my lecture looked like this:


Novel Discussion Post

This assignment was given in order to reinforce/test for any learning targets that were not hit. I decided to use SC 7  and SC10.

In the discussion post, I compared and contrasted the plays “Master Harold and the Boys” and “Death of a Salesman”.


Discussion post:

Master Harold and the Boys by Athol Fugard and Death of a Salesman by Arthur Miller are both plays with very different themes. However, they both intensely focus on how their moral values affect the way that they treat family. In Master Harold and the Boys, although the servants, Sam and Willy, are not biologically related to their young Master Hally, but their bond is so strong that it could be comparable to such. This is portrayed by the anecdotes that they recount in their conversations; for instance, when Hally was young, he would prefer to go to the servants barracks rather than play with the other white boys. Sam and Willy are his fatherly figures, especially since Hally’s father is an alcoholic and rarely takes up his parental duties. Their relationship is so strong, in fact, that Sam is willing to defy his young Master by telling him what he believes is wrong and right. Sam attempts to transfer his moral compass to his ‘child’ by telling Hally not to speak badly about his father. Meanwhile, in Death of a Salesman, Willy Loman is very materialistic and only cares about how his sons, Happy and Biff, are doing financially. Biff is the Willy’s foil because he has little to no interest in money and values his freedom and nurturing his interests more. This is seen through his conversations with Happy, where he details how he wants to escape society and build his own ranch. In the end, for both plays, the characters’ moral values is what destroys their relationships. For Master Harold and the Boys, Sam oversteps his boundaries by sticking to his morals and trying to make Hally have the same values as him. This is because in this time in England, blacks were still considered inferior to whites, so this act was considered unspeakable during that time. Hally, already conditioned to his society, explodes in outrage, eventually causing him to say something extremely racist remarks: thus permanently ruining a part of their relationship. In Death of a Salesman, Willy’s monetary values causes an insurmountable drift between him and Biff. Although Biff tries to close that gap, it fails because Willy is not satisfied with effort. He is only satisfied with results, which is becoming rich. Willy’s worldview combined with him hearing and seeing hallucinations of the woman he had an affair with leads to his death. Overall, these two plays have similar topics of morality and family, but wildly contrasting messages behind them. 

Video Supplemental Document

The documents/evidence submitted is meant to explain how we got to our analysis for the short story “You’re Ugly Too.”

Here is the link to our outline of our script as well as the planning process on the last couple of pages:

Refer to my previous post about Dragon Tales for my reflection.


R & G Passage and Reflection

For this assignment, my classmates and I chose a scene to act out from the play “Rosencrantz and Gildenstern”.

This was my reflection of the experience:

Acting is something that makes me feel uncomfortable, mostly because of my inexperience. However, this experience was particularly insightful because everyone went all in for their scenes, making me want to do the same. I think I contributed to the ensemble by using my phone to time us to ensure that we weren’t speaking for too long. In addition, I encouraged my group members to speak naturally and with less pauses in between our lines. This is because our scene was quite humorous so making it sound natural and quick added to the comedic effect.

I think I helped add meaning to the scene by making my tone confused, because a large part of Rosencrantz and Gildenstern is how nothing makes sense. They are confusing themselves so I wanted to portray that through my acting.



Emulation/Original Poem

For this poem, I tried to emulate “His Coy Mistress” by using the same structure. In addition, I also connected a theme to the topic of time. In this case, I talked about running out of time to watch the TV show, Game of Thrones. I enjoyed using lots of imagery and descriptive words, which is different from my usual writing style.

My poem went as follows:

Had we but world enough and time,

This coyness, Game of Thrones, were no crime.

We would sit down, and think which way

To watch, and pass our long tired day.

Thou by Khal Drogo’s side

Shouldst eggs find; I by the north

Of Lannister would complain. I would

Love the Starks before the red wedding,

And you should, if you please, bend the knee.

My love for HBO should grow

Vaster than empires and more slow;

An hundred years should go to praise

Thine plot, and on thy bloody gaze;

One hour to adore each episode,

But two hours for the last;

Patience at least to every part,

And the last trying should show your heart.

For, Martin, you deserve this state,

Nor would I love at lower rate.

       But at my back I always hear

Time’s wingèd chariot hurrying near;

And yonder all before us lie

Deserts of vast eternity.

Thy plot shall no more be found;

Nor, in thy marble vault, shall sound

My echoing longing; then worms shall try

That long-preserved secret,

And Martin’s honour turned to dust,

And into ashes all my questions;

The grave’s a fine and private place,

But none, I think, do there watch TV.

       Now therefore, while the youthful hue

Sits on thy skin like morning dew,

And while thy willing soul transpires

At every pore with instant fires,

Now let us watch us while we may,

And now, like hungry hyenas,

Rather at once our time devour

Than languish in his slow-chapped power.

Let us sit all our strength and all

Our anticipation up into one ball,

And tear our pleasures with rough strife

Through the twists and turns:

Thus, though we cannot make our sun

Stand still, yet we will chase the throne.