Pennsylvania Homeschoolers

AP* Online Classes

Before this course, I thought geography was shading in the Roman Empire on a blank world map.  I have a completely different perspective on geography now, and I regularly analyze the world around me and current events from a geographical perspective.  My essays for other subjects have even taken a geographical spin, and I'm using all my new techie vocabulary!

AP English Literature

On-Line for the 2017-2018 School Year

Teacher: Lilianna Meldrum Serbicki

Email: LSerbickiAP@gmail.com


This course is currently OPEN FOR ENROLLMENT for the 2017-2018 school year.    

Tuition: $650 before July 1st, 2017; $675 beginning July 1st, 2017. 

To apply: 
CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD THE AP LITERATURE COURSE APPLICATION. Please complete the form and email it to lserbickiap@gmail.com. Please feel free to email me your questions at any time.

Suggested Grade Level: This course is open to 10th, 11th and 12th graders. 
 

Length of course:  This course begins Tuesday, August 29th, 2017 (that is the first date homework is posted) and extends through the AP exam in May of 2018.  Optional live meetings occur EVERY OTHER WEDNESDAY at 2PM EST and 3:10PM EST beginning Week 1 of class. 
 

Required Texts:

Fiction and Drama:
Macbeth 
by William Shakespeare (buy or rent any edition)
Frankenstein by Mary Shelley (buy or rent any edition)
Persuasion by Jane Austen (buy or rent any edition)
A Room with a View by E.M. Forster (buy or rent any edition)
Brave New World
by Aldous Huxley (buy or rent any edition)
To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee (buy or rent any edition)  

Short Stories:
“The Open Boat” by Stephen Crane (available online; I will provide)
“Bernice Bobs Her Hair” by F. Scott Fitzgerald (available online; I will provide)
“Everything that Rises Must Converge” by Flannery O’Connor (available online; I will provide)

Poetry:
Various poems by T.S. Eliot, William Shakespeare, Dylan Thomas, W. B. Yeats, John Donne, Emily Dickinson, and others (all available online).
 
Required Reference Texts:
5 Steps to a 5 AP English Literature. 2016 Edition by Estelle Rankin. ISBN-13: 978-0071846288. The 2015 or 2017 edition is also acceptable.
Scholarly articles, nonfiction pieces, and resources that I will provide.

SUGGESTED BUT OPTIONAL REFERENCE TEXTS 
Reading Like a Writer
 by Francine Prose (ISBN-13: 978-0060777050)
The Blue Book of Grammar and Punctuation: An Easy-to-Use Guide with Clear Rules and Real-World Examples
(ISBN-13: 978-1118785560)

SUGGESTED BUT OPTIONAL Summer Reading from our reference list:
Chapters 1-2 of Reading Like a Writer by Francine Prose
The Blue Book of Grammar and Punctuation: An Easy-to-Use Guide with Clear Rules and Real-World Examples  

COURSE DESCRIPTION:

This class is intended for 10th, 11th and 12th graders who possess a love of story and energetic discussion. While this course is designed to prepare students to successfully take the Advanced Placement English Literature exam, the material is structured to encourage an ongoing love of writing and in-depth textual analysis. The ability to thoughtfully evaluate what we read is one of the best skills to develop in high school and beyond! I believe the best way to develop writing structure and style is through the study of storytelling and narrative. Humanity connects and communicates through stories, characters, and imaginative worlds. The pieces chosen for this course reflect a wide variety of themes and styles; there is something here for a lover of any genre and style, from classic drama to biting satire to realism and beyond! I have chosen classic works of fiction from a variety of time periods and backgrounds to help students explore a three-dimensional, vibrant scope of humanity.   

My goals in AP English Literature are to:

  1. Guide students as they master a wide breadth of literary analysis concepts, vocabulary, and devices (such as figurative language, motif, symbolism, characterization, conflict, narrative perspective, tone, and more) that help us to interpret and enjoy the narratives we read.
  2. Help students to master the ability to write concise, well-structured, specific essay responses.
  3. Encourage students to pursue knowledge in an active manner.
  4. Create an interactive community of rich discussion and exchange of ideas. 

I work to achieve these goals through many activities, including but not limited to:

This class is designed to be rigorous and exciting, while still flexible.

Weekly assignments may include:

TECHNICAL DETAILS:

LIVE Course Meeting Time: OPTIONAL LIVE meetings via the WebEx Meeting Center will occur EVERY OTHER WEDNESDAY at 2PM EST and 3:10PM EST beginning Week 1 of class. They will be 50-55 minutes long. These meetings will consist of lecture material AND interactive discussion time with fellow students and myself. All course meetings are OPTIONAL and will be RECORDED for your listening convenience. Approximately 70% of my AP Literature students attend live meetings; the rest listen to lectures asynchronously (afterwards) to fit their schedule. Students who are unable to attend live lectures may also participate in group discussion on the course website forum. On weeks that I do not feature live meetings, I typically provide an in-depth prerecorded audio lecture students may listen to at their convenience. Flexibility is the goal of this course.

Hours of study each week:
8-10 hours, depending on the week and the amount of bonus material the student chooses to cover. This includes required reading, extra credit, group discussion, short essays and multiple choice questions.

Instructor Qualifications: 
Mrs. Serbicki is an experienced Advanced Placement English instructor with a professional background in writing, media, editing, and advertising. She is a 2009 graduate of Franciscan University of Steubenville with a BA in Communication Arts and a Minor in Philosophy. This upcoming school year will be her seventh year teaching high-level online courses; in addition to teaching AP Literature with PA Homeschoolers, she also currently teaches AP Language, Creative Writing, and SAT English Prep with Debra Bell's Aim Academy. She has many years of experience providing student tutoring in areas of writing and mechanics as well as experience in small print publication and editing. Her students (including all course and tutoring students) have won over 14 Silver Keys and 11 Gold Keys in the Scholastic Art and Writing Awards. The majority of her Literature students earn 4s or 5s on the AP Literature exam.    


Student Reviews of Mrs. Serbicki's classes (you may also read more student reviews through the link at the bottom of this page):

"Mrs. Serbicki's AP Literature and Composition course was one of the best courses I have ever taken! It fully prepared me for the AP exam. I felt very comfortable while taking the test, and finished every part before the time allotted had passed....The in-class discussions and the feedback from the other students was also helpful, since everyone is offering their opinions and views, making it easier to gain a broad appreciation and understanding for each piece of literature."
 - Student, 2015-2016


"This class was extremely helpful both in preparing me for the AP Literature exam and in helping cultivate my further interest in literature—especially poetry. My writing skills improved greatly, and I have become a much more efficient writer than I was when I began the course. To put that in perspective, the first essay assignment we were given took me several days to write. By the time I took the exam, I was able to write a much better essay in under 40 minutes. Additionally, I grew a deeper appreciation for poetry as I learned how it was structured and how to analyze the different themes contained within poems. My favorite assignment was the midterm essay, as comparing two novels gave me a much deeper appreciation for both and finishing the long essay was extremely rewarding when it was finally finished. Communications with other students were helpful and often enlightening as well, and the point system for discussions helped ensure that I benefitted from that. I would say that this course is for persistent students who like a challenge. At first it will seem daunting but as you learn the ropes it becomes more and more natural, while still retaining a high standard of quality for the work you turn in."
- Student, 2015-2016


"I felt very confident and prepared on exam day.  Each assignment was so valuable in preparing me for the test, and while it was difficult for me to complete timed essays at the beginning of the year, I finished them with plenty of extra time on the day of the exam...I really enjoyed every assignment in this class.  I loved every work that we read, and the various extra credit assignments were extremely valuable.  For example, the weekly vocabulary prompts helped me to retain all the definitions of the terms.  Also, I liked the weekly discussion questions.  They really helped me to analyze and comprehend the texts we were reading, and it was interesting to read my classmates answers and see their interpretations. If I had to choose a favorite assignment though, it would probably be the dinner party.  It was a really fun way to review the works we had read throughout the class and to interact with other students...Mrs. Serbicki is a fabulous teacher.  She is very encouraging, helpful, and organized.  I always knew what was due each week.  The assignments were always very clear, and if I ever had any questions, Mrs. Serbicki was always quick to answer them. If you are willing to work hard, I know that this course will be not only enjoyable, but also beneficial.  This is, by far, my favorite class I have taken throughout high school!  Now that it is over, I wish I could do it all over again."
- Student, 2014-2015


“I absolutely loved Mrs. Serbicki’s AP English Literature course. It was such an amazing class, and I enjoyed it so much. Mrs. Serbicki is always very helpful and willing to answer questions. This course prepared me extremely well for the AP exam. Mrs. Serbicki teaches everything you need to know to score well. I received my score last month, and got a 5. Everything I used to prepare for the exam was from this class. If you take this course, you will be prepared for the exam. On average, I spent about 1-1.5 hours a day on this class. The workload was not overwhelming and I enjoyed doing it. I loved the novels we read and Mrs. Serbicki is great at leading discussions about them.”
- Student, 2013-2014 


"Mrs. Serbicki made herself available to answer any questions we students might have, and yet she also gave us the opportunity to mingle with other students online and during class lectures.  The discussions I had with my fellow students were fantastic ways to understand specific concepts as well as to introduce new ideas and perspectives found in the works of literature we read." 
-Student, 2013-2014


"
This has possibly been the best course I have ever taken. While I have a personal predilection for the subject of literature, Mrs. Serbicki not only encouraged my interest but also helped me to expand my literary taste and improve my analytical skills. She skillfully balanced the reading of high-quality works, the writing of essays on challenging but thought-provoking topics, and the discussion of insightful questions, with a few creative projects thrown in for good measure. I found a new outlet, rigorous and demanding but never frustrating or dull, for my favorite work of reading, writing, and reading some more!

     I felt confident and comfortable taking the AP Exam, and though I have not yet received my scores, I know that whatever success I receive owes a lot to Mrs. Serbicki's well-paced practice regimen and amazingly detailed critiques of my writing. For me, the most valuable assignments were simply writing the essays, both timed and untimed. I received a lot of valuable practice and training not only in developing my thoughts about a work into a clear analysis, but also in expressing those thoughts precisely and attractively with a good prose style. However, webboard discussion was also extremely valuable, and often helped me clarify my thoughts in the writing of the answers and in sharing discussions with my classmates (whom I will miss)."
- Student, 2012-2013

“My favorite assignments in this class were fiction responses.  There was an extra credit opportunity to write from a minor character’s point of view, which I loved so much I completed it three times.  I also chose to rewrite a scene from Macbeth instead of writing an essay.  Personally, I find fiction to be more difficult to write than an essay because there is not set formula; however, I love the creativity of fiction and how much power you feel while writing it. The other students in my class were wonderful.  A variety of opinions and ideas came out of our discussions.  I had a blast reading their work and debating with them.  They forced me to defend and expand my analysis of the various works we read. They all helped me grow both as a reader and as a writer.  I wish I was going to take English with all of them again next year. “ 
- Student, 2012-2013 

 

Click on images below to read class showcase entries about this class.

Click here to open or download an application to this class (Microsoft Word document)

Click here to read class reviews from past participants
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