Monday, July 8, 2013


From the Board of Education:

Students are required to read at least two books for summer reading. At least one of the selections must be a nonfiction book. Students must submit a one-page letter regarding one of the books (the assignment is explained on the next page). This assignment will be shared during the first week of class in September. Over the course of the first semester, teachers will work with their new students to revise summer assignments to participate in “Letters about Literature,” a national reading promotion by the Center for the Book in the Library of Congress. For more information on this initiative, please visit the following website:

Although booklists are offered, students are free to select summer reading books of their choice. In addition, students may purchase their own books or borrow books from the public library. The Maplewood and South Orange public libraries have been briefed on the assignment and are interested in participating in the book selection process. Ultimately, it is suggested that students who spend some time choosing their own book become more invested in the reading process itself. Booklists: For a vast array of booklists: Best fiction for young adults: For popular books and lists by genre:

Letter assignment:

After reading two books (one must be nonfiction), choose your favorite of the two and compose a one page letter to next year’s English teacher. Be prepared to share this assignment during the initial days of school. Be sure to include:
 The book title and author
 Explain why you would or would not recommend this book to a peer. Cite specific examples from the text (2-3) that confirm your opinion.
 Pose a question or wondering about the book. Is there something you would like to know more about as a result of this reading?

Students will have an opportunity to revise their letter after consulting with their new teacher. Ultimately the revised letter will be entered as a quiz grade in the first marking period. Later in the semester, students will prepare the letter for submission into the “Letters about Literature” Essay Contest.

Best wishes for an enjoyable summer filled with rich reading experiences!

In partnership,
Janine T. Gregory
English Language Arts Supervisor, Grades 6-12

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