Semester Exam Study Guide – Periods 2,4,6

Winter Semester Exam Study Guide/American Lit. (2nd, 4th, 6th)

Ms. Breaux


Test is: multiple choice, matching, quote identification, essay.


What you need at home to study:

Elements of Language (yellow textbook), Literature textbook, Unit 1 and 2 semester folder with all handouts, study guide, vocabulary index cards, additional grammar practice handouts


Review in class on Monday, 12/15 and Tues., 12/16


How should I study?

  • Study all quizzes and CORRECT the mistakes you made
  • Study Unit 1 Test corrections
  • Study The Crucible study guide and multiple choice/matching test
  • Practice additional grammatical exercise in your Elements of Writing book and practice the ones we did in class because the test questions will be very similar. No tricks, no surprises.
  • Go to and register to use their free site. Enter all lit. terms and vocabulary words and have fun playing games to learn your vocabulary words.
  • Practice finding: imagery, allusions, symbolism, tone in the origin myths/narratives/poetry we read.
  • Practice these reading strategies – DO NOT RE-READ AND RE-READ the literature. INTERACT with your text: make a time-line of the plot events, write out possible test questions on post-it annotations and then the answer, write down example quotations from the myths/poetry/narratives we read in class and then apply your literary terms to these quotes on flashcards and quiz yourself to see if you can identify them.


What does it cover?

This test covers all material 8/20-12/5/08

·         literature (origin myths, explorer myths, Puritan Poetry)

·         grammar (from warm-ups)

·         Poetry analysis (from warm-ups)

·         literary terms (in post-it annotations in your literature book)

·         vocabulary (from The Crucible only)

·         The Crucible – character development, plot knowledge, theme knowledge, symbol knowledge, how to write  thematic and character analysis essays


What should I bring with me?

  • A pen for your essay, a pencil for your scantron, 2-3 sheets of loose-leaf paper, your INDEX CARD (4X6) that has any information from this study guide that you wish. You will turn in your index card with your exam. If anyone’s index card is copied from another student, both index cards will be confiscated and a referral will be written for each of you. In other words, DO YOUR OWN WORK!!!




·         “The Earth on the Turtle’s Back”

·         “When the Grizzlies Walked Upright”

·         From “Of Plymouth Plantation”/Bradford

·         From “The Interesting Narrative of Olaudah Equiano”

·         “To My Dear and Loving Husband”/Bradstreet and “Huswifery”/Taylor

·         Know how to interpret and analyze a poem – from your warm-ups

·         Arthur Miller/McCarthyism/The Crucible



  • They’re/there/their
  • Independent vs. dependent clauses
  • How to correct a fragment when a dependent clause comes first
  • Nouns (definitions, how to recognize and identify): concrete/abstract, collective, compound.
  • How a collective noun functions and what kind of verb you use with it.
  • Singular vs. plural verbs and subjects
  • Pronouns (definitions, how to recognize and identify): relative, demonstrative, reflexive, intensive, interrogative, personal, indefinite
  • Know how to identify these pronouns in a sentence
  • Know what an antecedent is


Literary Terms

Symbol, allusion, tone, imagery, narrative (first, second person), slave narrative, Puritan Plain Style  — know the definitions and be able to identify these in a sample work of literature.


Essay Writing

Review all writing handouts – especially the one that explains how to write a character analysis. You will be asked multiple choice questions on how to write an essay – Thesis statement? Topic sentence? Body paragraphs? How to write an intro. paragraph. You will also be asked about MLA style – headings, and parenthetical citations.


Independent Reading

Be familiar with themes in your independent novels. Choose one novel and pick the major theme. Write a thematic statement and outline an essay for this theme.


What is the format? This exam is comprehensive. It is 100 multiple choice questions and 1 full-length 5-6 paragraph essay that will respond to either: poetry, an excerpt from a play that you must read, or a question about your independent novel. 



For students that came from other schools/classes – You need to see me with a list of the major works of literature (short stories/novels/plays) that you read in your other classes by the end of class Mon., 12/15.  Your exam will cover prior works from your previous English class as well as any work that you were here for in this class. Do note, that each question for the material covered while you were in this class will count more than your current classmates, since you may have fewer questions on the complete exam.




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