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Summer Reading 2017

Summer shouldn’t mean taking a break from learning, especially when it comes to reading! Studies show that most students experience a loss of reading skills over the summer months, but children who continue to read actually gain skills. During the summer, parents can help their children sustain reading skills, strengthen their vocabulary and reinforce the benefits of reading for enjoyment. Remember that children do need free time, away from structured academic learning. So the summer is the perfect time to relax and enjoy a good book!

For our Lower School families, we have put together a list of suggested books for parents to read to/with their child. These books are not required to be read or purchased. Students can read at least 5 of the suggested books over the summer and fill out the Summer Reading Log (located at the very end of this post) initialed by their parents. If a student reads 10 books they can earn 2 casual days! They simply have to return the log to their classroom teacher during the first week of school to earn the free casual days.

For our Upper School families, we allow our more mature readers the freedom to choose books for their summer reading in their genre of choice. Students should read a minimum of one book and come prepared to discuss their book–and possibly do a corresponding project–at the beginning of the 2017-18 school year. AP students will be contacted by their teachers about any required summer reading for class.

Please scroll down to see our suggested reading lists for all grade levels. Happy reading!

2nd & 3rd Grade Suggested List

Amber Brown Is Not a Crayon
Paula Danziger
Amber learns her best friend is moving to Alabama. This book begins a series about Amber Brown.
AR Level 3.7

The Boxcar Children Mysteries
Gertrude Chandler Warner
The resourceful Alden children survive without adult supervision and make a home for themselves in an abandoned boxcar.
AR 3rd and 4th grade level

Cam Jansen Series
David A. Adler
Cam solves crimes with the help of her best friend, Eric Shelton, and her amazing photographic memory in more than 30 cases to date. The Cam Jansen books are not only exciting mystery stories, but transitional readers, meant to help students move between easy-to-read picture and chapter books.
AR 3rd grade level

The Chocolate Touch
Patrick Skene Catling
Instead of gold, everything John Midas touched turns to precious chocolate.
AR Level 4.7
Honors 3rd grade class – Do not read!  We will read in class.

Clementine
Sara Pennypacker
When sorting through difficulties in her friendship with her neighbor Margaret, eight-year-old Clementine gains several unique hairstyles while also helping her father in his efforts to banish pigeons from the front of their apartment building.
AR Level 4.5

The Eagles are Back
Jean Craighead George
This illustrated book tells the true story of a boy who helped pull the American bald eagle back from the brink of extinction by encouraging a pair of eagles to adopt an egg from Alaska.
AR Level 3.7

Flat Stanley
Jeff Brown
After a bulletin board falls on Stanley while he’s sleeping, he finds that being flat has its advantages.
AR Level 4.0

Flora and Ulysses
Kate DiCamillo
Self-described cynic Flora Belle Buckman is not easily surprised but finding a flying, poetrywriting, superhero squirrel and meeting “profoundly strange” William Spiver puts a whole new spin on her life.
AR Level 4.3

The Giving Tree
Shel Silverstein
An apple tree shares all it has with a boy from the time he is very young until he is very old.
AR Level 2.6

A Handful of Stars
Cynthia Lord
Twelve-year-old Lily befriends Salma, a Hispanic girl whose family is in Maine for blueberry picking season, but as a local pageant approaches, the girls are confronted with the hard truths of prejudice and migrant life.
AR Level 4.4

Henry and Mudge
Cynthia Rylant
Henry, feeling lonely on a street without any other children, finds companionship and love in a big dog named Mudge.  This begins a long series of books about Henry and his dog Mudge.
AR Level 2.7

The Hit-Away Kid
Matt Christopher
Barry McGee, hit-away batter for the Peach Street Mudders, enjoys winning so much that he has a tendency to bend the rules, but then the dirty tactics of the pitcher on a rival team give him a new perspective on sports ethics.
AR Level 3.8

Horrible Harry in Room 2B
Suzy Kline
Doug discovers that though being Harry’s best friend in Miss Mackle’s second grade class isn’t always easy, as Harry likes to do horrible things, it is often a lot of fun.  This begins a long series of books about Harry.
AR Level 3.2

Ivy and Bean
Annie Barrows
When seven-year-old Bean plays a mean trick on her sister, she finds unexpected support for her antics from Ivy, the new neighbor, who is less boring than Bean first suspected.
AR Level 3.2

Jake Drake, Class Clown
Andrew Clements
Miss Bruce is the new student teacher in Jake’s second-grade class, and she never smiles. Jake has a new mission in life, to be so funny that even Miss Bruce will laugh, but then things get out of hand.
AR Level 3.4

Magic Tree House Series
Mary Pope Osborne
Dinosaurs before Dark
This book is the first in a series.  It is a time-travel fantasy in which two children encounter dinosaurs in their tree house.
AR Level 2nd and 3rd grade

The One and Only Ivan
Katherine Applegate
When Ivan, a gorilla who has lived for years in a down-and-out circus-themed mall, meets Ruby, a baby elephant that has been added to the mall, he decides that he must find her a better life.
AR Level 3.6

Tale of a Fourth Grade Nothing
Judy Blume
Peter Hatcher has a terrible problem–his two-year-old little brother.
AR Level 3.3

True… Sort Of
Katherine Hannigan
Mischievous Delly makes an unlikely friend for loner Ferris, but both Delly and Ferris have troubles, and it is their friendship that leads them to salvation in their small hometown.
AR Level 3.4

The Watcher: Jane Goodall’s Life with the Chimps
Jeanette Winter
This illustrated biography of British primatologist Jane Goodall describes her childhood, the years she spent in the African forests observing chimpanzees, and her efforts to protect and preserve primates and their habitats.
AR Level 4.2

What If You Had Animal Teeth?
Sandra Markle
This is a fun book that depicts how a child would look and behave with the teeth of various animals. AR Level 4.9

4th & 5th Grade Suggested List

The 39 Clues Series
Various authors
The Cahills are the most powerful family the world has ever known. Grace Cahill, the matriarch of the family, left a challenge in her will for her surviving relatives. They can either take one million dollars or the first in a series of Clues that will reveal the source of the family’s power. It’s Cahill vs. Cahill in a race to beat the competition and be the first to assemble all 39 Clues.
AR Level 4th and 5th grade

Because of Mr. Terupt
Rob Buyea
Seven fifth-graders at Snow Hill School in Connecticut relate how their lives are changed for the better by rookie teacher Mr. Terupt.
AR Level 3.7

The BFG
Roald Dahl
Luckily for Sophie, the BFG (Big Friendly Giant), who carries her off is nothing like his giant neighbors who are headed for England to gobble children and must be stopped.
AR Level 4.8

The Boy in the Striped Pajamas
John Boyne
Bored and lonely after his family moves from Berlin to a place called “Out-With” in 1942, Bruno, the son of a Nazi officer, befriends a boy in striped pajamas who lives behind a wire fence.
AR Level 5.8

Defiance
Valerie Hobbs
While vacationing in the country, eleven-year-old Toby, a cancer patient, learns some important lessons about living and dying from an elderly poet and her cow.
AR Level 4.0

Eight Keys
Suzanne LaFleur
When twelve-year-old Elise, orphaned since age nine, becomes disheartened by middle school and its bullies, changing relationships, and higher expectations, keys to long-locked rooms and messages from her late father help her cope.
AR Level 3.8

Escape from Mr. Lemoncello’s Library
Chris Grabenstein
Twelve-year-old Kyle gets to stay overnight in the new town library, designed by his hero, the famous gamemaker Luigi Lemoncello, with other students but finds he must work with friends to solve puzzles in order to escape.
AR Level 4.5

Faith, Hope, and Ivy June
Phyllis Reynolds Naylor
During a student exchange program, seventh-graders Ivy June and Catherine share their lives, homes, and communities and find that although their lifestyles are total opposites, they have a lot in common.
AR Level 5.8

Half Upon a Time
James Riley
Jack’s grandfather is pushing him to find a princess and get married, so when a young lady falls out of the sky wearing a shirt that says “Punk Princess” & is looking for her grandmother, who looks like the long-missing Snow White, Jack helps her. Book #1 in the series
AR Level 5.5

Hatchet
Gary Paulsen
After a plane crash, thirteen-year-old Brian spends 54 days in the wilderness, learning to survive initially with only the aid of a hatchet given to him by his mother, and learning also to survive his parents’ divorce.
AR Level 5.7

Heat
Mike Lupica
Pitching prodigy Michael Arroyo is on the run from social services after being banned from playing Little League baseball because rival coaches doubt he is only twelve years old, and he has no parents to offer them proof.
AR Level 5.3

The Hundred Dresses
Eleanor Estes
In winning a medal she is no longer there to receive, a little Polish girl teaches her classmates a lesson.
AR Level 5.4

The Invention of Hugo Cabret
Brian Selznick
When twelve-year-old Hugo, an orphan living and repairing clocks within the walls of a Paris train station in 1931, meets a mysterious toyseller and his goddaughter, his undercover life and his biggest secret are jeopardized.
AR Level 5.1

The Land of Stories – The Wishing Spell
Chris Colfer
Through the mysterious powers of a book, twins Alex and Conner leave their world behind and find themselves in a foreign land full of wonder and magic, where they come face-to-face with the fairytale characters they grew up reading about. Book #1 in the series
AR Level 5.0

The Last Kids on Earth
Max Brallier
After a monster apocalypse hits town, average thirteen-year-old Jack Sullivan builds a team of friends to help slay the eerily intelligent monster known as Blarg. Book #1 in the series
AR Level 4.3

The Lions of Little Rock
Kristin Levine
In 1958 in Little Rock, Arkansas, painfully shy twelve-year old Marlee sees her city and family divided over school integration.
AR Level 4.1

One for the Murphys
Lynda Mulally Hunt
Carley struggles with being open to love after she suffers a heartbreaking betrayal that forces her to move in with a foster family.
AR Level 3.4

Out of My Mind
Sharon Draper
Considered by many to be mentally retarded, a brilliant, impatient fifth-grader with cerebral palsy discovers a technological device that will allow her to speak for the first time.
AR Level 4.3

Pax
Sara Pennypacker
After being forced to give up his pet fox, Pax, a young boy named Peter decides to leave home and get his best friend back.
AR Level 5.3

The Romeo and Juliet Code
Phoebe Stone
During World War II, eleven-year-old Felicity is sent from London to Bottlebay, Maine, to live with her grandmother, aunt, uncle, and a reclusive boy who helps her decode mysterious letters that contain the truth about her missing parents.
AR Level 5.3

The Secret Language of Girls
Frances O’Roark Dowell
Marylin and Kate have been friends since nursery school, but when Marylin becomes a middle school cheerleader and Kate begins to develop other interests, their relationship is put to the test. Book #1 in the series
AR Level 5.2

Someone Named Eva
Joan M. Wolf
From her home in Czechoslovakia in 1942, eleven-year-old Milada is taken with other blond, blue-eyed children to a school in Poland to be trained as “proper Germans” for adoption by German families, but she remembers her true name and history.
AR Level 5.1

Ungifted
Gordon Korman
Due to an administrative mix-up, troublemaker Donovan Curtis is sent to the Academy of Scholastic Distinction, a special program for gifted and talented students, after pulling a major prank at middle school.
AR Level 5.2

Wonderstruck
Brian Selznick
Twelve-year old Ben, whose story is told in words, loses both his mother and his hearing, and leaves home to seek the father he never knew while Rose, whose story is told in pictures, is also compelled to search for the something missing in her life.
AR Level 5.4

The Word Eater
Mary Amato
Lerner Chanse, a new student at Cleveland Park Middle School, finds a worm that magically makes things disappear, and she hopes it will help her fit in, or get revenge, at her hated school.
AR Level 4.5

6th Grade Suggested List

All Fall Down
Ally Carter
Daredevil Army brat Grace, the granddaughter of the world’s most powerful ambassador, returns to the Embassy Row of her childhood summers to solve the mystery of her mother’s death.
AR Level 4.3

Hattie Big Sky
Kirby Larson
After inheriting her uncle’s homesteading claim in Montana, sixteen-year-old orphan Hattie Brooks travels from Iowa in 1917 to make a home for herself and encounters some unexpected problems related to the war being fought in Europe.
AR Level 4.4

Heaven Is for Real: A Little Boy’s Astounding Story of His Trip to Heaven and Back
Todd Burpo
Todd Burpo shares his son’s visions of heaven after a near-fatal illness, describing what Colton saw and learned about faith and love after listening to Colton’s stories of his time with Jesus.
AR Level 6.3

I Am Malala (Young Readers Edition)
Malala Yousafzai
Malala Yousafzai describes her fight for education for girls under Taliban rule, the support she received from her parents to pursue an education, and how the Taliban retaliated against her by trying to kill her.
AR Level 5.9

The Landry News
Andrew Clements
A fifth-grader starts a newspaper with an editorial that prompts her burnt-out classroom teacher to really begin teaching again, but he is later threatened with disciplinary action as a result.
AR Level 6.0

Milkweed
Jerry Spinelli
This book takes us to one of the most devastating settings imaginable — Nazi-occupied Warsaw of World War II — and tells a tale of heartbreak, hope, and survival through the bright eyes of a young orphan.
AR Level 3.6

The Mysterious Benedict Society
Trenton Lee Stewart
After passing a series of mind-bending tests, four children are selected for a secret mission that requires them to go undercover at the Learning Institute for the Very Enlightened, where the only rule is that there are no rules.
AR Level 5.6

Sixth Grade Glommers, Norks, and Me
Lisa Papademetriou
As she starts middle school, soccer-playing sixth-grader Allie Kimball worries about losing her best friend and being considered a “nerd” but ultimately makes important decisions about how to treat others and remain true to herself.
AR Level 4.2

Small as an Elephant
Jennifer Richard Jacobson
Abandoned by his mother in an Acadia National Park campground, eleven-year-old Jack tries to make his way back to Boston before anyone figures out what is going on, with only a small toy elephant for company.
AR Level 5.3

Soul Surfer
Bethany Hamilton
Bethany Hamilton, a 14-year-old aspiring professional surfer from Hawaii, lost her arm in a shark attack. With writer Sheryl Berk and Rick Bundschuh, a pastor whom the teen calls her spiritual advisor, she offers an upbeat chronicle of her life.
AR Level 6.0

Through My Eyes – Young Reader’s Edition
Tim Tebow
Tim Tebow traces his path to success, discussing his childhood as the son of Christian missionaries and how his faith combined with his drive to succeed have made him the person he is today.
AR Level 6.2

Titanic – Voices from the Disaster
Deborah Hopkinson
This book draws on stories from survivors and archival photographs to describe the history of the “Titanic.”
AR Level 7.4

Uprising
Margaret Peterson Haddix
In 1927, at the urging of twenty-one-year-old Harriet, Mrs. Livingston reluctantly recalls her experiences at the Triangle Shirtwaist factory, including miserable working conditions that led to a strike and the fire that took the lives of her friends.
AR Level 5.6

7th – 12th Grade

We encourage our more mature readers to choose summer reading books from their genre of choice. Students should read a minimum of one book and come prepared to discuss their book–and possibly do a corresponding project–at the beginning of the 2017-18 school year. Please note that a reading log is not required for Upper School students. AP students will be contacted by their teachers about any required summer reading for class.

Summer Reading Log

Book Title Parent Initials

(Turn in log sheet to classroom teacher during the first week of school)

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