In this activity, students will read and reflect on the different types of writing they might encounter on the AP® Language & Composition Exam. First, they will match the mode/medium of writing to a definition and to how this might look at the AP Lang Exam. From there, students will do a “deep-dive” into one mode/medium and prompt, brainstorming subjects, conventions, and possible connections to the rhetorical situation. This lesson will help expose students to different types of prompts/passages they might see on the exam, recognize conventions of these  mediums, and practice deconstructing the different prompts. Not only does this activity help with exposure to prompts and passages they might encounter, it also can help students think and respond quickly. Teachers might ask students to choose one of the prompts/passages that they can respond to in future lessons or as a summative assessment. 

Skills Covered

RHS-1.A: situation of a text collectively refers to the exigence, purpose, audience, context, and message.

CLE-1.Y: Effectively entering into an ongoing conversation about a subject means engaging the positions that have already been considered and argued about.

REO-1.G: Methods of development are common approaches writers frequently use to develop and organize the reasoning of their arguments. A method of development provides an audience with the means to trace a writer’s reasoning in an argument.


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Lauren Peterson (Master of Arts, Education) has been teaching AP® English Language and Composition in a number of states for more than ten years, most recently at Highlands High School in Fort Thomas, Kentucky, where she is also the schoolwide literacy leader. Before this position, Lauren served as a curriculum and instructional coach in Duval County, Florida. Lauren worked for College Board on a pilot curriculum designed to both remediate common AP® English Language challenges and also prepare students for Microsoft Office Specialist Certification. As an independent consultant for the National Math and Science Initiative, Lauren has written diverse curricula used by students across the country as well as training materials for beginning and experienced AP® English Language teachers. Lauren served as an AP® English Language Reader and continues to work as an AP® English Language trainer for new and experienced teachers.