Summer Reading

Below are PDFs and a list of all reading lists available as of 05/28/2019. If your class' reading list is not here, please check back frequently as the lists will be updated periodically.

Summer Reading Lists (by Grade)

9th Grade (English I & Honors English I)

Freshmen Summer Reading Assignment 2019

English I Assignment: Students will read then complete a response journal for one of the novels listed below that must be typed and brought to class during the first week of classes in August 2019.

Coming of Age Novels

The House on Mango Street- Sandra Cisneros  It’s Kind of a Funny Story- Ned Vizzini+
The Catcher in the Rye- J.D. Salinger+ A Yellow Raft in Blue Water- Michael Dorris+
Ellen Foster –Kaye Gibbons Monster- Walter Dean Myers
The Hate U Give- Angie Thomas+   The Secret Life of Bees- Sue Monk Kidd
The Perks of Being a Wallflower-Stephen Chbosky+ Slam- Walter Dean Myers
She’s So Money- Cherry Cheva  Speak- Laurie Halse Anderson
Sleeping Freshmen Never Lie- David Lubar  Twisted- Laurie Halse Anderson
Stargirl- Jerry Spinelli Born Confused – Tanuja Desai Hidier
American Panda – Gloria Chao  Long Way Down – Jason Reynolds
Americanized: Rebel without a Green Card – Sara Saedi  Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe- Benjamin Alire Saenz+

Each book deals with a unique character facing a unique coming of age story. Do a little research into the books, look up the summaries to find out what the books are about. Many of these books (+) deal with mature themes, so discuss them with your parents before choosing.

You are going to complete several assignments related to this novel, one before school starts, and others throughout the first quarter of the school year, so you want to be familiar with the book.

The first assignment is a response journal. Response Journals should be divided in TWO columns; the left column should be labeled TEXT. The right column should be labeled RESPONSE.

  • Please notice in the TEXT column you cite verbatim/word-for-word/direct quote passages from the novel and include quotation marks and page numbers according to MLA format. 
  • Each response must be at least 60 words in length. The WORD COUNT must be listed in the journal response.
  • Response Journals are due the first week of classes in August 2019. Failure to do this assignment may result in failing the quarter

You are required to have at least ten (10) passages with corresponding responses. Be sure the ten passages are representative of the entire book. In other words, ten passages taken only from the first few chapters or even the last few chapters will not be acceptable. This document must be TYPED and PRINTED.

Example: [Students may vary the format but not the required content]

A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens

TEXT (5pts)

1. “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity; it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair, we had everything before us, we were all going direct to Heaven, we were all going direct the other way—in short, the period was so far like the present period, that some of its noisiest authorities insisted on its being received, for good or for evil, in the superlative degree of comparison only” (page 3).

RESPONSE (5pts)

1. What a puzzling opening line! The whole first paragraph is one sentence! Dickens’ first line of the novel is very catchy— “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times…”—that can relate to so many things… it is kind of like going to high school; it is great to get older, but at the same time the worst having to grow up. So, this book is about comparing two places? It sounds like the setting(s) of the book are very different, but the same. Who are the authorities that are directing the people to act the way they are?  (103 words)

  

Freshmen Summer Reading Assignment 2019

Honors English I Assignment: Students in Honors English I are asked to read one Coming of Age novel from the below list and be prepared to discuss it at the beginning of the year.

Coming of Age Novels

The House on Mango Street- Sandra Cisneros  It’s Kind of a Funny Story- Ned Vizzini+
The Catcher in the Rye- J.D. Salinger+ A Yellow Raft in Blue Water- Michael Dorris+
Ellen Foster –Kaye Gibbons Monster- Walter Dean Myers
The Hate U Give- Angie Thomas+   The Secret Life of Bees- Sue Monk Kidd
The Perks of Being a Wallflower-Stephen Chbosky+ Slam- Walter Dean Myers
She’s So Money- Cherry Cheva  Speak- Laurie Halse Anderson
Sleeping Freshmen Never Lie- David Lubar  Twisted- Laurie Halse Anderson
Stargirl- Jerry Spinelli Born Confused – Tanuja Desai Hidier
American Panda – Gloria Chao  Long Way Down – Jason Reynolds
Americanized: Rebel without a Green Card – Sara Saedi  Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe- Benjamin Alire Saenz+

Each book deals with a unique character facing a unique coming of age story. Do a little research into the books, look up the summaries to find out what the books are about. Many of these books (+) deal with mature themes, so discuss them with your parents before choosing.

Honors English I students will ALSO choose one of the following classic coming of age novels to read and create a response journal, still focusing on the idea of coming of age. The response journal is due in August 2019

Novel choices:

A Tree Grows in Brooklyn: Betty Smith    Lord of the Flies by William Gerald Golding
Little Women by Louisa May Alcott A Tale of Two Cities, Great Expectations, or Oliver Twist by Charles Dickens

                                                            

Response Journal should be divided in TWO columns; the left column should be labeled TEXT. The right column should be labeled RESPONSE.

  • Please notice in the TEXT column you cite verbatim/word-for-word/direct quote passages from the novel and include quotation marks and page numbers according to MLA format. 
  • Each response must be at least 60 words in length. The WORD COUNT must be listed in the journal response.
  • Response Journals are due the first week of classes in August 2019. Failure to do this assignment may result in failing the quarter

You are required to have at least ten (10) passages with corresponding responses. Be sure the ten passages are representative of the entire book. In other words, ten passages taken only from the first few chapters or even the last few chapters will not be acceptable. This document must be TYPED and PRINTED.

Example: [Students may vary the format but not the required content] 

A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens

TEXT (5pts)

1. “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity; it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair, we had everything before us, we were all going direct to Heaven, we were all going direct the other way—in short, the period was so far like the present period, that some of its noisiest authorities insisted on its being received, for good or for evil, in the superlative degree of comparison only” (page 3).

RESPONSE (5pts)

1. What a puzzling opening line! The whole first paragraph is one sentence! Dickens’ first line of the novel is very catchy— “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times…”—that can relate to so many things… it is kind of like going to high school; it is great to get older, but at the same time the worst having to grow up. So, this book is about comparing two places? It sounds like the setting(s) of the book are very different, but the same. Who are the authorities that are directing the people to act the way they are?  (103 words)

 

10th Grade (English II & Honors English II)

English II Summer Reading Assignment

Novel: The Color of Water by James McBride

Instructions: After completing a reading of The Color of Water, you will present an expression of your own identity while comparing/contrasting your own identity elements of plot, action, characterization, or theme in The Color of Water. You can say things like, “I have not experienced the tension of racial diversity; however, when I first met a person from a uniquely different culture than myself, I reacted by…” Although you must reference the text, this is your own unique story to tell. You will explain who you are as a person and explain how you came into that identity. For example, if you are the cross country captain and that is how you identify yourself, explain how you came into that role: “In middle school, I played football and basketball. After multiple injuries, I started to think that I may need a break from full contact sports. My freshman year at St. Pius, I joined the cross country team as a joke and then realized I am fast and enjoy the rush of running.”

Criteria: Your identity descriptions must include the following essential information/criteria -

  • Who you are:
    • Physical Description
    • Likes
    • Dislikes
    • Talents
    • Dreams
    • Friends
    • Associations (groups you belong to, religious affiliation, sports, etc.)
  • How you came to be the person you are (reflections of cultural and personal influences)
  • One emotional response: such as a time when someone thought you were someone other than who you are and how you reacted.
  • One ironic response: an occasion when someone though you were someone other than who you really are and how you reacted.
  • One contrasting response: Describe someone antithetical (opposite) of you
  • One comparing response: Describe someone you look up to, model yourself after.
  • Description of you by another person (family member, friend, boss, neighbor, etc.)
  • Who will you be five years from now?
  • Three connections/meaningful references to The Color of Water in relation to identity.

 

ENGLISH II HONORS

SUMMER READING & WRITING ASSIGNMENT 

English II Honors students will read:

  1. The Color of Water by James McBride
  2. Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte

Students will complete a dialectical journal for The Color of Water. Dialectical Journals MUST be typed in times new roman/12 pt. font. This assignment is due on the first day of class, August 14, 2019.

The “dialectic” was the method Socrates used to teach his students how to be actively engaged in the struggle to derive meaning from an unfamiliar and challenging work.  In a dialectical journal, students divide their paper into two columns. One column is labeled TEXT; the other, RESPONSE.  As you read, identify certain passages that cause you to stop and respond to what you are reading.

Example         [Please do not vary the format or the required content]

__________________________________________________________________________________________

Life of Pi by Yann Martel

TEXT (2 points) RESPONSE (2 points)
“My suffering left me sad and gloomy. Academic study and the steady, mindful practice of religion slowly brought me back to life. I have kept up what some people would consider my strange religious practices.  After one year of high school, I attended the University of Toronto and took a double-major Bachelor’s degree.  My majors were religious studies and zoology” (Martel 3). What a puzzling opening line! What “suffering”? It makes me curious immediately. The narrator follows this statement with the solution to the problem of “suffering”: religion.  OK, as a devout Catholic, I understand the comfort of religion, but the narrator further confesses to “strange religious practices.”  I do not personally define my religious practices as “strange” so I am even more intrigued.  And after only one year of high school, college? The narrator must be brilliant. The final coup de grace is the combined majors of religious studies and zoology, such a bizarre combination!  The first chapter of a novel should provide the reader with the basics: introduce protagonist, establish setting and time, and grab reader’s attention with problem or conflict. OK, Yann Martel, you’ve got my attention… (128 words)
“My feelings can perhaps be imagined, but they can hardly be described.  To the gurgling beat of my greedy throat, pure, delicious, beautiful, crystalline water flowed into my system. Liquid life, it was” (Martel 142).

Pi is willing to risk a confrontation with Richard Parker for life-giving water for Pi’s parched, sick body. Martel’s description of pure water flowing into his system almost makes you taste it. I know after a four mile walk in Houston heat that first bottle of water tastes…like pure silk. It says something powerful about the nature of man that the will to live will drive one to face extreme danger, even death, for the chance to survive.

(78 words)

 

You will use this model to create your dialectical journal, and your teacher will use this model to evaluate your work.  Please notice in the TEXT column you cite verbatim/word-for-word/direct quote passages from the novel and include quotation marks and page numbers according to MLA format.  This document must be TYPED.

For the RESPONSE column, you have several ways to respond to a text:

  1. Raise questions about the beliefs and values implied in the text;
  2. Give your personal reactions to the passage;
  3. Discuss the words, ideas, or actions of the author or characters;
  4. Tell what it reminds you of from your own experience or from other literature you have read;
  5. Write about what it makes you think or feel;   
  6. Argue with or speak to the characters or author.

DO NOT simply summarize what you are reading. We want you to become an ACTIVE reader where you are responding to the text... NOT summarizing it.  

You are required to have at least twenty-five (25) passages with corresponding responses.  Be sure the twenty-five passages are representative of the entire book.  In other words, twenty-five passages taken only from the first few chapters or even the last few chapters will not be acceptable. 

Each text and response combination will be worth (4) points for a total of 100 points for this assignment which will count as a test grade. 

  • Points will be deducted on the TEXT side for failure to document accurately and completing according to the sample provided.
  • Points will be deducted on the response side for superficiality, vagueness, or incompleteness. 

Each response must be at least 60 words in length. The WORD COUNT must be listed in the journal response. 

Dialectical Journals are due the first day of class, August 14, 2019.  Failure to do this assignment may result in your dismissal from Honors English II.               

**Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte**:

There is no assignment for Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte; the writing assignment will be given to students when they return in August. It would be a great idea to annotate the text and take notes in the margins.

 

11th Grade (English III & English III Challenging American)

English III & English III Challenging Americans

Summer Reading and Writing Assignment

English III and English III Challenging Americans students will choose one of the following:

The Glass Castle by Jeanette Walls    **OR**

Same Kind of Different as Me by Ron Hall

Students will then complete a dialectical journal that must be typed and brought to class on the first day of school, August 14, 2019.

The “dialectic” was the method Socrates used to teach his students how to be actively engaged in the struggle to derive meaning from an unfamiliar and challenging work.  In a dialectical journal, students divide their paper into two columns. One column is labeled TEXT; the other, RESPONSE.  As you read, identify certain passages that cause you to stop and respond to what you are reading.

Example         [Students may vary the format but not the required content]

__________________________________________________________________________________________

Life of Pi by Yann Martel

TEXT (2 points) RESPONSE (2 points)
“My suffering left me sad and gloomy. Academic study and the steady, mindful practice of religion slowly brought me back to life. I have kept up what some people would consider my strange religious practices.  After one year of high school, I attended the University of Toronto and took a double-major Bachelor’s degree.  My majors were religious studies and zoology” (Martel 3). What a puzzling opening line! What “suffering”? It makes me curious immediately. The narrator follows this statement with the solution to the problem of “suffering”: religion.  OK, as a devout Catholic, I understand the comfort of religion, but the narrator further confesses to “strange religious practices.”  I do not personally define my religious practices as “strange” so I am even more intrigued.  And after only one year of high school, college? The narrator must be brilliant. The final coup de grace is the combined majors of religious studies and zoology, such a bizarre combination!  The first chapter of a novel should provide the reader with the basics: introduce protagonist, establish setting and time, and grab reader’s attention with problem or conflict. OK, Yann Martel, you’ve got my attention… (128 words)
“My feelings can perhaps be imagined, but they can hardly be described.  To the gurgling beat of my greedy throat, pure, delicious, beautiful, crystalline water flowed into my system. Liquid life, it was” (Martel 142).

Pi is willing to risk a confrontation with Richard Parker for life-giving water for Pi’s parched, sick body. Martel’s description of pure water flowing into his system almost makes you taste it. I know after a four mile walk in Houston heat that first bottle of water tastes…like pure silk. It says something powerful about the nature of man that the will to live will drive one to face extreme danger, even death, for the chance to survive.

(78 words)

 

You will use this model to create your dialectical journal, and your teacher will use this model to evaluate your work.  Please notice in the TEXT column you cite verbatim/word-for-word/direct quote passages from the novel and include quotation marks and page numbers according to MLA format.  This document must be TYPED and PRINTED.

For the RESPONSE column, you have several ways to respond to a text:

  1. Raise questions about the beliefs and values implied in the text;
  2. Give your personal reactions to the passage;
  3. Discuss the words, ideas, or actions of the author or characters;
  4. Tell what it reminds you of from your own experience or from other literature you have read;
  5. Write about what it makes you think or feel;   
  6. Argue with or speak to the characters or author.

Please DO NOT simply summarize what you are reading. We want you to become an ACTIVE reader where you are responding to the text.

You are required to have at least twenty-five (25) passages with corresponding responses.  Be sure the twenty-five passages are representative of the entire book.  In other words, twenty-five passages taken only from the first few chapters or even the last few chapters will not be acceptable. 

Each text and response combination will be worth (4) points for a total of 100 points for this assignment which will count as a test grade. 

  • Points will be deducted on the TEXT side for failure to document accurately and completing according to the sample provided.
  • Points will be deducted on the response side for superficiality, vagueness, or incompleteness. 

Each response must be at least 60 words in length. The WORD COUNT must be listed in the journal response. 

Dialectical Journals are due the first day of class, August 2019.  Failure to do this assignment may result in failing the quarter.

 

AP English III

Summer Reading and Writing Assignments 

AP English III students will read the following:

  1. A Lesson Before Dying by Ernest J Gaines
  2. Outliers: The Story of Success by Malcolm Gladwell
  3. Moneyball: The Art of Winning an Unfair Game by Michael Lewis

Writing Assignment A Lesson Before Dying:

Set up a two column Word document. Find at least 5 quotations that use different registers of speech or writing. For each quotation, explain how the diction and register choices help to shape the character of the person you quoted. See the example below.

Quotation: please cite in MLA form.

Analysis of 100 words or more. Please use Formal Standard Written Academic English (FSWAE.)

“I don’t want them to kill no hog” (13).

Miss Emma asks Grant, early in the novel, to spend time with Jefferson, whom the court has sentenced to death. Her diction indicates that she lacks formal education in its double negative “don’t” and “no hog.” The same phrase indicates that she understands that the justice system wants to execute a human being, and that she disapproves of the punishment for Jefferson. The use of dialect allows Gaines to present Miss Emma as both uneducated and deeply intelligent. As with any text, the author’s choice of register reveals character. In this specific case, Miss Emma presents herself as a forceful woman. Grant may think he does not want to give in to her request, but he will not refuse Miss Emma’s wishes easily. WC: 119

 

Writing Assignment for Outliers:

The last line of the introduction serves effectively as a thesis for the entire text. It reads, “I want to do for our understanding of success what Stewart Wolf did for our understanding of health” (11).

I want you to show how Gladwell constructs his arguments to support the above thesis. Again, use a two column document, and show what quotations move forward the thesis. You must use at least 5 quotations per chapter. Note use of Aristotelean appeals to logos, ethos, or pathos. Note use of rhetorical devices such as parallelism, repetitive devices, figures of speech, and persuasive devices. My interest is that you are able to deconstruct an argument, and each of Gladwell’s chapters serves as an argument working towards proving his thesis.

So, you must:

  1. Read the entire work, including the introduction.
  2. Choose 3 chapters from “Part One: Opportunity,” and you must find 5 quotations from each of these 3 chapters for the left column, cited in MLA form. (That is 15 quotations for “Part One.”)
  3. Choose 2 chapters from “Part Two: Legacy,” and you must find 5 quotations from each of these 2 chapters for the left column, cited in MLA form. (That is 10 quotations for “Part Two.”)
  4. I’m looking for only a sentence or two of explanation for each technique of argument that you list in the second column.

Example:

Quotation from “The Matthew Effect”

Technique of Argumentation

“Success in hockey is based on individual merit—and both of these words are important (17).

Ethos: as a society, we like to believe we reward individual merit and hard work. As a method of setting up his argument, Gladwell calls on what he believes are shared ethical ideas.

“Or are they?” (17).

Gladwell follows the previous idea with a rhetorical question to ask his readers to examine his argument that what society perceives as individual merit may not, in fact, show merit, but rather something else.

 

Writing Assignment for Moneyball:

As you read Moneyball, keep in mind the ideas about the use of data in both Outliers and Moneyball. When school starts, our first writing assignment will have to do with how the concept of big data has influenced society in the past two decades. You may want to annotate the text for ease in finding references to data use for the writing we will do to start the year.

12th Grade (AP English IV, English IV, Shakespeare, & Dual Credit)

Summer Reading Assignments

AP English Literature and Composition

Instructions: This summer, you will read two books, complete a writing assignment over one (see book #2, below) and prepare for a timed writing over the other. 

Book #1 Options: Dystopian Novels

Choose one of the following novels and be prepared to discuss as a class and take a quiz.

The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood  Oryx and Crake by Margaret Atwood
Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury Parable of the Sower by Octavia Butler 
The Dog Stars by Peter Heller  Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro
A Scanner Darkly by Phillip K. Dick Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep by Phillip K. Dick
Brave New World by Aldous Huxley Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel
The Road by Cormac McCarthy Nineteen Eighty-Four by George Orwell
Slaughterhouse-Five by Kurt Vonnegut  

When you return to class in the fall, you will take a timed writing over your dystopian novel. You will need to prepare to write in depth and specifically about characters, events, and how your novel qualifies as a dystopian novel.

Book #2: How to Read Literature Like a Professor: A Lively and Entertaining to Reading Between the Lines, Revised Edition, Thomas C Foster (2014). 

Writing Assignments for
How to Read Literature Like a Professor by Thomas C. Foster

(Adapted from Donna Anglin)

Introduction: How’d He Do That?

How do memory, symbol, and pattern affect the reading of literature? How does the recognition of patterns make it easier to read complicated literature? Discuss a time when your appreciation of a literary work was enhanced by understanding symbol or pattern.

Chapter 1 -- Every Trip Is a Quest (Except When It’s Not)

List the five aspects of the QUEST and then apply them to something you have read (or viewed) in the form used on pages 3-5.

Chapter 2 -- Nice to Eat with You: Acts of Communion
Choose a meal from a literary work and apply the ideas of Chapter 2 to this literary depiction.

Chapter 3: --Nice to Eat You: Acts of Vampires

What are the essentials of the Vampire story? Apply this to a literary work you have read or viewed.

Chapter 4 -- If It’s Square, It’s a Sonnet

Select three sonnets and show which form they are. Discuss how their content reflects the form. (Submit copies of the sonnets, marked to show your analysis).

Chapter 5 --Now, Where Have I Seen Her Before?

Define intertextuality. Discuss three examples that have helped you in reading specific works.

Chapter 6 -- When in Doubt, It’s from Shakespeare...

Discuss a work that you are familiar with that alludes to or reflects Shakespeare. Show how the author uses this connection thematically. Read pages 44-46 carefully. In these pages, Foster shows how Fugard reflects Shakespeare through both plot and theme. In your discussion, focus on theme.

Chapter 7 -- ...Or the Bible

Read “Araby” (available online). Discuss Biblical allusions that Foster does not mention. Look at the example of the “two great jars.” Be creative and imaginative in these connections.

Chapter 8 -- Hanseldee and Greteldum

Think of a work of literature that reflects a fairy tale. Discuss the parallels. Does it create irony or deepen appreciation?

Chapter 9 -- It’s Greek to Me

Write a free verse poem derived or inspired by characters or situations from Greek mythology. Be prepared to share your poem with the class. Note that there are extensive links to classical mythology on my Classics page.

Chapter 10 -- It’s More Than Just Rain or Snow

Discuss the importance of weather in a specific literary work, not in terms of plot.

Interlude -- Does He Mean That

Chapter 11 --...More Than It’s Gonna Hurt You: Concerning Violence

Present examples of the two kinds of violence found in literature. Show how the effects are different.

Chapter 12 -- Is That a Symbol?

Use the process described on page 106 and investigate the symbolism of the fence in “Araby.” (Mangan’s sister stands behind it.)

Chapter 13 -- It’s All Political

Assume that Foster is right and “it is all political.” Use his criteria to show that one of the major works assigned to you as a freshman is political.

Chapter 14 -- Yes, She’s a Christ Figure, Too

Apply the criteria on page 119 to a major character in a significant literary work. Try to choose a character that will have many matches. This is a particularly apt tool for analyzing film -- for example, Star Wars, Cool Hand Luke, Excalibur, Malcolm X, Braveheart, Spartacus, Gladiator and Ben-Hur.

Chapter 15 -- Flights of Fancy

Select a literary work in which flight signifies escape or freedom. Explain in detail.

Chapter 16 -- It’s All About Sex...

Chapter 17 -- ...Except the Sex

OK…the sex chapters. The key idea from this chapter is that “scenes in which sex is coded rather than explicit can work at multiple levels and sometimes be more intense that literal depictions” (141). In other words, sex is often suggested with much more art and effort than it is described, and, if the author is doing his job, it reflects and creates theme or character. Choose a novel or movie in which sex is suggested, but not described, and discuss how the relationship is suggested and how this implication affects the theme or develops characterization.

Chapter 18 -- If She Comes Up, It’s Baptism

Think of a “baptism scene” from a significant literary work. How was the character different after the experience? Discuss.

Chapter 19 -- Geography Matters…

Discuss at least four different aspects of a specific literary work that Foster would classify under “geography.”

Chapter 20 -- ...So Does Season

Find a poem that mentions a specific season. Then discuss how the poet uses the season in a meaningful, traditional, or unusual way. (Submit a copy of the poem with your analysis.)

Interlude -- One Story

Write your own definition for archetype. Then identify an archetypal story and apply it to a literary work with which you are familiar.

Chapter 21 -- Marked for Greatness

Figure out Harry Potter’s scar. If you aren’t familiar with Harry Potter, select another character with a physical imperfection and analyze its implications for characterization.

Chapter 22 -- He’s Blind for a Reason, You Know

Chapter 23 -- It’s Never Just Heart Disease...

Chapter 24 -- ...And Rarely Just Illness

Recall two characters who died of a disease in a literary work. Consider how these deaths reflect the “principles governing the use of disease in literature” (215-217). Discuss the effectiveness of the death as related to plot, theme, or symbolism.

Chapter 25 -- Don’t Read with Your Eyes

After reading Chapter 25, choose a scene or episode from a novel, play or epic written before the twentieth century. Contrast how it could be viewed by a reader from the twenty-first century with how it might be viewed by a contemporary reader. Focus on specific assumptions that the author makes, assumptions that would not make it in this century.

Chapter 26 -- Is He Serious? And Other Ironies

Select an ironic literary work and explain the multivocal nature of the irony in the work.

Chapter 27 -- A Test Case

Read “The Garden Party” by Katherine Mansfield, the short story starting on page 245. Complete the exercise on pages 265-266, following the directions exactly. Then compare your writing with the three examples. How did you do? What does the essay that follows comparing Laura with Persephone add to your appreciation of Mansfield’s story?

Envoi

Choose a motif not discussed in this book (as the horse reference on page 280) and note its appearance in three or four different works. What does this idea seem to signify?

English IV, Shakespeare, Dual Credit English

This summer you will read two books, complete a dialectical journal over one, and prepare for a quiz over the other.

Book #1 Options: Dystopian Novels

Choose one of the following novels and be prepared to discuss as a class and take a quiz.

The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood  Oryx and Crake by Margaret Atwood
Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury Parable of the Sower by Octavia Butler 
The Dog Stars by Peter Heller  Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro
A Scanner Darkly by Phillip K. Dick Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep by Phillip K. Dick
Brave New World by Aldous Huxley Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel
The Road by Cormac McCarthy Nineteen Eighty-Four by George Orwell
Slaughterhouse-Five by Kurt Vonnegut  

When you return to class in the fall, you will take a quiz over your dystopian novel, in the form of a writing assignment. You will need to prepare to write in depth and specifically about characters, events, and how your novel qualifies as a dystopian novel.

Book #2- Self-selected Non-fiction Book

For this novel, you have the opportunity to read about something that you are interested in. While the topic is up to you, there are some guidelines to follow:

  1. Book must be non-fiction. Non-fiction literature is based in fact. Per the Cambridge Dictionary, non-fiction is “writing that is about real events and facts, rather than stories that have been invented” (2019). These might include biography, autobiography, memoir, true crime, informative, and history.
  2. Book must be at least 200 pages in length
  3. Book must be for an adult audience, rather than written for a younger audience (Young Adult, Teen, etc.) For example, if you choose to read I Am Malala, there are two versions, I Am Malala, and I Am Malala Young Readers Edition, you would choose the first, rather than the second version.
  4. Make good choices about subject and author. You will have to discuss this book with your teacher.
  5. Self-Help doesn’t qualify as non-fiction. Neither do instructional manuals, how-to guides, religious texts, home decorating, travel, home improvement, historical fiction (based on time period doesn’t count!), Guinness Book of World Records and other trivia and fun facts books, or cookbooks.
  6. While some graphic novels definitely fall into the category of memoir/autobiography, fictionalized versions (for example Maus) do not qualify because they are more fiction than non-fiction. Graphic novels as a genre are tricky, so be careful!

Amazon and your local library are both great resources to help you find a book that you will be interested in reading. Searching by broad or specific topics can help, or you can talk to a librarian.

Here are some suggested non-fiction options that your senior English teachers enjoyed, if you’re not sure what sorts of books might qualify:

Here are some suggested non-fiction options that we enjoyed, if you’re not sure what sorts of novels might qualify:

Autobiography/ Memoir/Biography: True Crime/Informative/History:
Becoming by Michelle Obama    Killers of the Flower Moon by David Grann
The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot   Guns, Germs and Steel by Jared Diamond
Persepolis (1+2) by Marjane Satrapi   Devil in the White City by Erik Larson
Into the Wild by Jon Krakauer   In the Garden of Beasts by Erik Larson
The Year of Magical Thinking by Joan Didion   Stiff by Mary Roach
Boy on Ice: the Life and Death of Derek Boogaard by John Branch Complications: A Surgeon’s Notes on an Imperfect Science by Atul Gawande
Educated by Tara Westover    
Hillbilly Elegy: A Memoir of a Family and Culture in Crisis
                by J.D. Vance
 

Choosing your book is merely the first step. As you read your book, you will respond to it.

The graded assignments for this book includes a dialectical journal and a 2 paragraph reflection.

Dialectical Journal Instructions:

You will use the model to create your dialectical journal, and your teacher will use this model to evaluate your work.  Please notice in the TEXT column you cite verbatim/word-for-word/direct quote passages from the novel and include quotation marks and page numbers according to MLA format.  This document must be TYPED.

For the RESPONSE column, you have several ways to respond to a text:

  1. Raise questions about the beliefs and values implied in the text;
  2. Give your personal reactions to the passage;
  3. Discuss the words, ideas, or actions of the author or characters;
  4. Tell what it reminds you of from your own experience or from other literature you have read;
  5. Write about what it makes you think or feel;   
  6. Argue with or speak to the characters or author.

DO NOT simply summarize what you are reading. We want you to become an ACTIVE reader where you are responding to the text... NOT summarizing it.  

You are required to have at least twenty-five (25) passages with corresponding responses.  Be sure the twenty-five passages are representative of the entire book.  In other words, twenty-five passages taken only from the first few chapters or even the last few chapters will not be acceptable. 

Each text and response combination will be worth (4) points for a total of 100 points for this assignment which will count as a major grade. 

  • Points will be deducted on the TEXT side for failure to document accurately and completely according to the sample provided.
  • Points will be deducted on the response side for superficiality, vagueness, or incompleteness. 

Each response must be at least 60 words in length. The WORD COUNT must be listed in the journal response. 

Dialectical Journals are due the first day of class, August 14, 2019.

Life of Pi by Yann Martel

TEXT (2 points) RESPONSE (2 points)
“My suffering left me sad and gloomy. Academic study and the steady, mindful practice of religion slowly brought me back to life. I have kept up what some people would consider my strange religious practices.  After one year of high school, I attended the University of Toronto and took a double-major Bachelor’s degree.  My majors were religious studies and zoology” (Martel 3). What a puzzling opening line! What “suffering”? It makes me curious immediately. The narrator follows this statement with the solution to the problem of “suffering”: religion.  OK, as a devout Catholic, I understand the comfort of religion, but the narrator further confesses to “strange religious practices.”  I do not personally define my religious practices as “strange” so I am even more intrigued.  And after only one year of high school, college? The narrator must be brilliant. The final coup de grace is the combined majors of religious studies and zoology, such a bizarre combination!  The first chapter of a novel should provide the reader with the basics: introduce protagonist, establish setting and time, and grab reader’s attention with problem or conflict. OK, Yann Martel, you’ve got my attention… (128 words)
“My feelings can perhaps be imagined, but they can hardly be described.  To the gurgling beat of my greedy throat, pure, delicious, beautiful, crystalline water flowed into my system. Liquid life, it was” (Martel 142).

Pi is willing to risk a confrontation with Richard Parker for life-giving water for Pi’s parched, sick body. Martel’s description of pure water flowing into his system almost makes you taste it. I know after a four mile walk in Houston heat that first bottle of water tastes…like pure silk. It says something powerful about the nature of man that the will to live will drive one to face extreme danger, even death, for the chance to survive.

(78 words)

 

Final Piece: Reflection

Your goal by the time you finish your non-fiction book is to figure out how the author shows the reader that this event/ person/subject is significant. Reflect in 1-2 paragraphs how the author accomplishes this goal. How did the author make this interesting to you? Additionally, reflect on why you chose this book.