Shaker Junior High School

7th Grade Summer 2019 Reading Letter

Dear Parents and Students:

At Shaker Junior High School, we believe that reading during the vacation months contributes significantly to a student’s academic growth, and promotes a lifelong love of reading. As a result, we require that all 7th grade students read two books and complete the attached Summer Reading Project.

Students may choose books from the attached Recommended Summer Reading for Grade 7, or may substitute any other grade appropriate book. The attached list has been designed to provide for various reading levels and interests. We advise parents and students to discuss options together, and to select books wisely. Summer reading should be an enjoyable experience, and the books chosen should be appropriate for the student both in terms of content and level of difficulty.

The 7th grade book list can also be found on the SJHS Library web page. Until school lets out on June 26th, additional summer reading packets and index cards are available at the Main Office of Shaker Junior High School.

Any student experiencing difficulty with this assignment or having questions should contact me at 518-785-5511 extension 3368 or Dawn Lange, Principal for Houston and Norris Hall, at 518-785-1341 extension 4538.

Sincerely,

Pamela Burns

K-12 ELA Supervisor

pamburns@ncolonie.org

7th Grade Summer Reading Project

On the front of a 5”x 8” index card, supply the following information for the two books you read:

1. Title

2. Author

3. Genre

4. Setting (time and place)

5. Three main events

On the back of the card write a brief explanation of the theme (main idea, lesson learned) of your books that you could use as a “jumping off point” for an in-class writing piece.

Note: You should have one index card for each book (two total).

During the month of September, students will be using the information from their cards to develop an in class project that will be graded. The index cards will be due the first week of school.

Remember that at least two books must be read. You may choose from the attached list.

Index Card Sample Set-up

[front]

Your name:

1. Title:

2. Author:

3. Genre:

4. Setting (time & place)

5. Three main events:

[back]

Explanation of theme:

Recommended Summer Reading for 7th Graders

Alexander, Kwame. Rebound. Before Josh and Jordan Bell were streaking up and down the court, their father was learning his own moves. In this prequel to Newbery Medal winner The Crossover, Chuck Bell takes center stage, as readers get a glimpse of his childhood and how he became the jazz music worshipping, basketball star his sons look up to.

Anderson, Laurie-Halse. Chains. Isabel tells the story of her life as a slave. She was sold with her younger sister to a cruel loyalist family even though the girls were to be free upon the death of their former owner. Isabel has hopes of finding a way to freedom and becomes a spy for the rebels, but soon realizes that it’s difficult to trust anyone.

Benjamin, Ali. The Thing About Jellyfish. Twelve-year- old Suzy Swanson wades through her intense grief over the loss of her best friend by investigating the rare jellyfish she is convinced was responsible for her friend's death.

Bodeen, S. A. The Compound. Eli and his family have lived in the underground Compound for six years. The world they knew is gone, and they've become accustomed to their new life. Accustomed, but not happy. For Eli, no amount of luxury can stifle the dull routine of living in the same place, with only his two sisters, his father and mother, doing the same thing day after day after day. As problems with their carefully planned existence threaten to destroy their sanctuary— and their sanity—Eli can't help but wonder if he'd rather take his chances outside. Eli's father built the Compound to keep them safe. But are they safe—or sorry?

Bowling, Dusti. Insignificant Events in the Life of a Cactus. Aven Green loves to tell people that she lost her arms in an alligator wrestling match, or a wildfire in Tanzania, but the truth is she was born without them. And when her parents take a job running Stagecoach Pass, a rundown western theme park in Arizona, Aven moves with them across the country knowing that she’ll have to answer the question over and over again.

Bradley, Kimberly Brubaker. The War I Finally Won. As the frightening impact of World War II creeps closer and closer to her door, eleven-year-old Ada learns to manage life on the home front.

Bragg, Georgia. How They Croaked. Over the course of history, men and women have lived and died. In fact, getting sick and dying can be a big ugly mess, especially before the modern medical care that we all enjoy today. This book relays all the gory details of how nineteen world figures croaked.

DeLaney, Joseph. The Last Apprentice: Revenge of the Witch. When Thomas is apprenticed to the local Spook, whose job is to fight evil spirits and witches, he expects a life of danger. However, the boy doesn’t realize just how soon he’ll face a powerful enemy alone, as Mother Malkin escapes her confinement while the Spook is away.

Dias, Marley. Marley Dias Gets It Done: And So Can You! Marley Dias, the powerhouse girl-wonder who started the #1000blackgirlbooks campaign, speaks to kids about her passion for making our world a better place, and how to make their dreams come true! In this accessible guide...Marley Dias explores activism, social justice, volunteerism, equity and inclusion, and using social media for good. Drawing from her experience, Marley shows kids how they can galvanize their strengths to make positive changes in their communities, while getting support from parents, teachers, and friends to turn dreams into reality. Focusing on the importance of literacy and diversity, Marley offers suggestions on book selection, and delivers hands-on strategies for becoming a lifelong reader.

Dowell, Frances O’Roarke. Dovey Coe. When accused of murder in her North Carolina mountain town in 1928, Dovey Coe, a strong-willed girl, comes to a new understanding of others.

Ellis, Ann Dee. You May Already Be A Winner. Twelve- year-old Olivia endeavors to care for her younger sister, possibly make a new friend in the quirky and secretive Bart, and keep hope alive for her, her family, and her community of idiosyncratic neighbors at Sunny Pines Trailer Park.

Flanagan, John. The Outcasts. Hal, Stig, and the other outcasts don’t have the size and strength of the Skandians, but when they face off against the Wolves and the Sharks in an ultimate race for survival, they hope that their courage and cunning are enough to help them win in a game that everyone seems to think is a matter of life and death.

Gilman, David. The Devil’s Breath. Tom Gordon, whose job is to expose environmental crime, is missing and presumed dead. Now his son, Max, must leave England and go to the wilds of Namibia to search for him. Max is aided in his search by Sayid, his boarding school friend and a computer whiz; a female pilot; and a Bushman boy.

Hautman, Pete. Slider. Hoping to win a cash prize in a pizza eating contest after racking up a tab on his mother's credit card, David must juggle his competitive eating training with the responsibility of looking after his autistic younger brother.

Hubbard, Kristen. Race The Night. Eider might be living at the end of the world, but that won't stop her from searching for the things that could make it all begin again--especially after Teacher announces a mysterious new type of lessons that turn her life upside down.

Lupica, Mike. QB 1. Jake is the freshman quarterback on his high school football team. He is also the son of a legendary NFL quarterback and the younger brother of Wyatt, who led his team to the State Championship last season. All of this leaves Jake in a big shadow and under a lot of pressure. Inspired by the real-life Manning family of quarterbacks.

Also by Lupica: Travel Team. When talented but short Danny doesn't make the prestigious 7th grade travel team, he and his dad, a former NBA player, form their own travel team.

McCoola, Marika. Baba Yaga’s Assistant. Most children think twice before braving a haunted wood filled with terrifying beasties to match wits with a witch, but not Masha. Her beloved grandma taught her many useful things: that stories are useful, that magic is fickle, and that nothing is too difficult or too dirty to clean. The fearsome witch of folklore needs an assistant, and Masha needs an adventure.

Ness, Patrick. A Monster Calls. At seven minutes past midnight, Conor wakes to find a monster outside his bedroom window. But it isn’t the monster Conor’s been expecting. The monster in his backyard is different. It’s ancient, wild, and it wants something from Conor. It wants the truth. Patrick Ness has spun a haunting and darkly funny novel of mischief, loss, and monsters both real and imagined.

Ostertag, Molly Knox. The Witch Boy. In thirteen-year- old Aster's family, all the girls are raised to be witches, while boys grow up to be shapeshifters. Anyone who dares cross those lines is exiled. Unfortunately for Aster, he still hasn't shifted ... and he's still fascinated by witchery, no matter how forbidden it might be. When a mysterious danger threatens the other boys, Aster knows he can help -- as a witch. It will take the encouragement of a new friend, the non-magical and non-conforming Charlie, to convince Aster to try practicing his skills. And it will require even more courage to save his family ... and be truly himself.

Swanson, James. Chasing Lincoln’s Killer. Tracks John Wilkes Booth and his conspirators from Lincoln's assassination to their escape over land and water to the climactic shootout leading to Booth's death.

Sweet, Melissa. Some Writer! : The Story of E. B. White. An illustrated biography of author E.B. White, the author of Charlotte’s Web.

Townsend, Jessica. The Trials of Morrigan Crow (Nevermoor book 1). Born on an unlucky day that leaves her cursed to die on her eleventh birthday, a young girl named Morrigan Crow hopes to avoid her fate by earning a position in the Wundrous Society and thereby securing a safe home in a magical land called Nevermoor. But first she must compete against hundreds of other children in four very dangerous trials.

Vance, Alexander. The Heartbreak Messenger. Quentin offers a simple but valuable communication service; he delivers break-up messages. For a small fee, he will deliver such a message to your soon-to-be ex. But as he interacts with the message recipients, it doesn't take him long to start questioning his new business. Quentin discovers the game of love and the emotions that go with it are as complicated as they come.

Watson, Renee. Piecing Me Together. Tired of being singled out at her mostly-white private school as someone who needs support, high school junior Jade would rather participate in the school's amazing Study Abroad program than join Women to Women, a mentorship program for at-risk girls.

Yea, Kat. The Way To Bea. Recently estranged from her best friend and weeks away from shifting from only child to big sister, seventh grader Beatrix Lee consoles herself by writing haiku in invisible ink and hiding the poems, but one day she finds a reply--is it the librarian with all the answers, the editor of the school paper who admits to admiring her poetry, an old friend feeling remorse, or the boy obsessed with visiting the local labyrinth?

Not on the list, but I want to read:

Book synopses from: Follett Destiny, Goodreads, and the mind of Mrs. Armbruster bit.ly/SJHSLib

8th Grade Summer 2019 Reading Letter

Dear Parents and Students:

In North Colonie, we believe that reading during the vacation months contributes significantly to a student’s academic growth. As a result, we require that all 8th grade students read two books and complete the attached Summer Reading Project.

Students may choose books from the attached Recommended Summer Reading for Grade 8, or may substitute any other grade-appropriate book. The attached list has been designed to provide for various reading levels and interests. We advise parents and students to talk about summer reading options, and to select books wisely. Summer reading should be an enjoyable experience, and the books chosen should be appropriate for the student both in terms of content and level of difficulty.

The 8th grade book list can also be found on the SJHS Library web page. Additional summer reading packets and index cards are available at the Main Office of Shaker Junior High School until the end of the school year.

Any student experiencing difficulty with this assignment or having questions should contact me at 518-785-5511 extension 3368, or Dawn Lange, Principal for Houston and Norris Hall, at 518-785-1341 extension 4538.

Sincerely,

Pamela Burns

K12 ELA Supervisor

pamburns@ncolonie.org

8th Grade Summer Reading Project

On the front of a 5" x 8" index card, supply the following information for the two books you read:

1. Title

2. Author

3. Genre

4. Setting (time and place)

5. Three main events

On the back of the card, write a brief explanation of the theme (main idea, lesson learned) of your books that you could use as a “jumping off point” for an in-class writing piece.

Note: You should have one index card for each book (two total).

During the month of September, students will be using the information from their cards to develop an in-class project that will be graded. The index cards will be due the first week of school.

Remember that at least two books must be read. You may choose from the attached list.

Index Card Sample Set-up

[front]

Your name:

1. Title:

2. Author:

3. Genre:

4. Setting (time & place)

5. Three main events:

[back]

Write a brief explanation of the theme (main idea, lesson learned).

Example text:

In The Thief of Always, one of the most important themes is not to take for granted all of the good things in our lives. Harvey is bored and unhappy living life with his parents and dealing with boring teachers. When he finds the Holiday House, he thinks he has found fun and good times for every moment of his life. However, he realizes he lost thirty-one years to time spent at the Holiday House. Once he escapes, Harvey tries hard to right the situation, all the while learning just how good his life was before he met Mr. Hood.

Recommended Summer Reading for 8th Graders

Aronson, Marc. Trapped: How the world rescued 33 miners from 2,000 feet below the Chilean Desert. True telling of how people from all over the globe pooled knowledge and resources to rescue 33 men trapped below the earth.

Cain, Susan. Quiet Power, the secret strengths of introverts. A guide for kids and teens. Based on her best selling adult book, Cain blends her story with those of teens to show that being introverted can be a strength and a help to others.

Card, Orson Scott. Ender’s Game. Genetically engineered warriors and genius generals are necessary for Earth to fight off an alien onslaught. By playing the game, can Ender Wiggin lead Earth to victory?

Carter, Ally. I’d Tell You I Love You, But Then I’d Have To Kill You. At the Gallagher School for Girls young ladies learn languages, math and...spy skills. This first book in the Gallagher Girls series introduces Cammie and her friends, as they try to figure out how a spy-n-training can fall in love.

Crowe, Chris. Mississippi Trial 1955. The true story of the murder of Emmett Till is woven into this novel that looks at how one boy deals with the violence of racism in the early days of the civil rights movement.

Donnelly, Jennifer. A Northern Light. Mattie desperately wants to go to Barnard College. Unfortunately, she needs to help run the family farm and hold her job at the hotel for needed money. A murder at the hotel forces her to think of the future and what she wants for herself. (Loosely based on an actual murder case in upstate New York.)

Farmer, Nancy. House of the Scorpion. Matt, a human clone, finds the courage to escape his future as spare parts for his patron, a powerful drug lord. National Book Award winner.

Finkel, Michael. The Stranger in the Woods. For 27 years Christopher Knight lived as a hermit in the woods of Maine, scavenging/stealing to stay alive. The author details how he survived as well as why he chose this path for his life.

Horowitz, Anthony. Stormbreaker. Alex knows his uncle’s death wasn’t an accident. He can’t let it go. When he discovers what really happened, he wished he had as he is pulled into a dangerous web of espionage. (The first book in the Alex Rider series.)

Kidd, Sue Monk. Secret Life of Bees. Lily Owen shot and killed her mother. Or so everyone says. While struggling to find clues to solve her own mystery, Lily witnesses the struggle for freedom during the 1960’s Civil Rights Movement.

Krakauer, Jon. Into Thin Air. Riveting account of a catastrophic expedition up Mount Everest by Outside journalist and climber Jon Krakauer. The expedition, led by expert guides, left seven people dead.

Lewis, Congressman John and Andrew Aydin. March. Volumes 1-3. The memoir of John Lewis, former son of a sharecropper current US Congressman. He recounts his journey through the civil rights movement as he attends the inauguration of President Obama in award winning, graphic novel format.

Marsh, Katherine. Nowhere Boy. Max, an American boy living in Belgium, discovers a Syrian refugee in the basement of the his family’s rented home. Ahmed has lost his family during the war and escape. He and Max must navigate through difficult times, not only because of the ongoing European refugee crisis, but also when a terrorist bombing occurs in the city. Courage is required of both boys as they deal with the prejudices and fears that surround them.

Martel, Yann. Life of Pi. Shipwrecked on his way from India to Canada, 16-year-old Pi fantastically recounts how he and the surviving members of his father’s zoo animals survived 227 days at sea.

Mazer, Harry. A Boy At War: A Novel Of Pearl Harbor. The son of a naval officer must choose between his father’s wishes for a promotion and befriending a Japanese- American boy following Japan’s attack. McKinley, Robin. Hero and the Crown. Daughter of the Damaran king and a northern witch, Aerin struggles to fulfill her destiny and earn the respect of her people.

Gidwitz, Adam. The Inquisitor’s Tale. Medieval travelers visiting various local inns tell tales about three magic children (most-wanted by the king) and their canine protector.

Hiranandani, Veera. The Night Diary. Nisha uses her new diary as a way to feel close to her deceased mother, writing about her day-to-day life, relationships and feelings. The dangers she faces reflect the real-life events of Indian and Pakistan independence from Great Britain in1947.

Murphy, Jim. Invincible Microbe: Tuberculosis and the Never-ending Search for a Cure. A “biography” of this deadly disease as it plagued the human race. Also by Murphy: Truce-The Day the Soldiers Stopped Fighting. WWI soldiers defy their commanders and declare a truce for Christmas Day.

Myers, Walter Dean. Harlem Summer. A fictional look at the 1920’s is shown in an effort to impress a famous neighborhood jazzman Mark takes a shady job delivering what turns out to be bootleg liquor. Or try Sunrise Over Fallujah about Operation Iraqi Freedom.

Nelson, Peter. Left For Dead. The sinking of the USS Indianapolis was one of the worst naval disasters in U. S. history. This is the story of the ship, their wronged captain, her brave sailors, and a young man’s crusade to right an injustice.

Pla, Sally J. Someday Birds. Charlie’s family sets off cross- country to visit his father, who is being treated for brain trauma after an IED in Afghanistan hit his vehicle. While he longs to see his father, his autism makes him extremely uncomfortable outside his regular routine. As tourist sites and national parks are visited, he concentrates on his journal and list of birds he and his dad hope to see someday.

Preus, Margi. Shadow on the Mountain. Set in Norway during WWII, this is the story of 14-year-old Espen who loses his best friend to the Nazi cause while he chooses to fight with the Resistance. An exciting adventure story based on real events.

Reynolds, Jason. As Brave As You. Two brothers travel to backwoods Virginia to visit their grandfather for the first time. Not only are they shocked by the lack of modern conveniences (no TV no Internet), but family secrets once buried, find their way to the surface.

Riordan, Rick. The Sword of Summer. The first in the Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard series. Orphaned and homeless, Magnus is always one step ahead of the law and an uncle with dangerous secrets. When it is revealed that he is the son of a mythical Norse god and is then killed by a fire giant, Magnus becomes part of an ancient quest to stop the end of the world.

Saeed, Aisha. Amal Unbound. Longing for an education, but indentured to a local wealthy family, Amal finds small ways to fulfill her dreams by hiding books and befriending a local teacher.

Sanderson, Brandon. Firefight and Calamity (books 2 and 3 of the Reckoners series). In Firefight, David begins to question the need for total destruction of the Epics and looks for the redemption of one he may have feelings for. Calamity sets up the conclusion of the series with David trying to discover Prof’s fear- the only way he can end the destruction.

Schmidt, Gary. Okay for Now. Moving to a new town doesn’t mean starting over. Doug still has to deal with his abusive father, a bad reputation, and his brother, an injured Vietnam veteran. An unlikely friendship and a quiet place provide the safe haven he needs. If you like this, try The Wednesday Wars.

Schroder, Monika. The Dog in the Wood. World War II is over, and things should be better. Unfortunately, Fritz learns first hand that even though his fighting is done, life may never be normal again.

Sheinkin, Steve. Bomb: The Race to Build and Steal the World’s Most Dangerous Weapon. This reads like a great spy novel, but it’s all true! Follow the story of the making and attempts to steal the atomic bomb.

Sloane, Holly Goldberg. Counting by 7’s. Family and friends, that’s what Willow is trying to find. Her adoptive parents are supportive, but her high IQ seems to be an obstacle to friendship. The death of her parents and the kindness of one true friend help her move on from tragedy to a new life of possibilities.

Smelcer, John. The Trap. Respect for his tribal elders delays Johnny’s search for his missing grandfather. With time running out for the elder, who has been caught in his own hunting trap, his grandson sets off into the frozen Alaskan winter to find him.

Sonnenblick, Jordan. Drums, Girls, and Dangerous Pie. Steven is leading a pretty typical life for an 8th grade drummer until his little brother is diagnosed with leukemia. Amidst the tragedy, he discovers that life, with love and friendship, goes on.

Tharp, Tim. Knights of the Hill Country. Football is everything. Or is it? High school star linebacker and senior Hampton Greene finally begins to question his life and discovers that he might be interested in more.

Woodson, Jacqueline. Brown Girl Dreaming. This National Book Award winner in verse is a memoir of Woodson’s childhood with her family in the South and NYC.

E-books are available all summer via the SJHS Library website for OVERDRIVE/SORA login information. Remember to visit your public library, too.