Summer Reading » Summer Reading 2019

Summer Reading 2019



We hope everyone has an enjoyable summer filled with fun and a few good books. To that end, please see the reading list below for the requirements for your Cavalier. Summer Reading is carefully selected by our talented ELA teachers for each grade level. Students can expect a formal assessment grade on Summer Reading no later than mid-September.  

Please choose an appropriate title based on your reading level (lexile), class placement, and interest from the list below. If you are unsure of your lexile level, please visit to take a very short assessment to gauge your lexile range. Lexile Levels are provided to help guide (not dictate a choice). Please know that with works of fiction, lexile levels often do not seem high enough; however, lexile level is not the only indicator of a complex text.

PARENTAL WARNING: Some of these titles may have content that families/parents may find inappropriate due to the nature of the book and who it is about, as well as its level.  Please be sure to research your chosen title before purchasing and reading.

Please scroll to the end for tips on annotating. Happy Reading!

Rising 6th grade Students: Please select ONE of the following titles to read, ANNOTATE, and enjoy!


Cheng, Jack-- See You in the Cosmos (1120L) ISBN: 978-0399186387

Hiaasen, Carl-- Hoot (760L) ISBN: 978-0375829161

Naylor, Phyllis Reynolds-- Shiloh (890L) ISBN: 978-0689835827

Philbrick, Rodman-- Freak the Mighty (1000L) ISBN: 978-0439286060

London, Jack-- The Call of the Wild (1080L) ISBN: 978-1503302945

Nonfiction/Informational Text:

Lemke, Donald--  Investigating The Scientific Method with Max Axiom (760L) ISBN: 978-1429617604

Jimenez, Francisco-- The Circuit: Stories of a Life of a Migrant Child (880L) ISBN: 978-0826317971

Pollen, Michael-- Omnivore’s Dilemma Young Reader’s Edition (930L) ISBN: 978-1101993835

Paulsen, Gary--  Woodsong (Lexile n/a) ISBN: 978-1416939399

O’Brien, Ann Sibley-- After Gandhi: One Hundred Years of Nonviolent Resistance (Lexile n/a)

ISBN: 978-1580891301

Rising 7th grade Students: Please select ONE of the following titles to read, ANNOTATE, and enjoy!


Alexie, Sherman-- War Dances (790L) ISBN: 978-0802144898

Cooper, Susan-- Over Sea, Under Stone: The Dark Is Rising sequence (920L) ISBN: 978-0689840357

Hijuelos, Oscar-- Dark Dude (980L) ISBN: 978-1416949459

Hurston, Zora Neale-- Mules and Men (1020L) ISBN: 978-0061350177

Myers, Walter Dean-- The Greatest: Muhammad Ali (Lexile n/a) ISBN: 978-0590543439

Park, Linda Sue-- Seesaw Girl (810L) ISBN: 978-0547248882

Soto, Gary-- Novio Boy (Lexile n/a) ISBN: 978-0152058630

Whelan, Gloria-- Homeless Bird (800L) ISBN: 978-0064408196

Nonfiction/Informational Text:

Dumas, Firoozeh-- Funny in Farsi: A Memoir of Growing Up Iranian in America (1030L) ISBN: 978-0812968378

Hickam, Homer-- Rocket Boys/October Sky (900L) ISBN: 978-0385333214

Jiang, Ji-Li-- Red Scarf Girl: A Memoir of the Cultural Revolution (780L) ISBN: 978-0061667718

Jimenez, Francisco-- Breaking Through (750L) ISBN: 978-0618342488

Kehret, Peg-- Small Steps: The Year I Got Polio (890L) ISBN: 978-0807574584

Keller, Helen-- The Story of My Life (1150L) ISBN: 978-1512092974

Paulsen, Gary-- Eastern Sun, Winter Moon: An Autobiographical Odyssey (1080L) ISBN: 978-0156002035

Santiago, Esmeralda-- When I Was Puerto Rican (1020L) ISBN: 978-0306814525

Rising 8th grade Students: Please select ONE of the following titles to read, ANNOTATE, and enjoy!

Fiction Text:

Alvarez, Julia-- Before We Were Free (890L) ISBN: 978-0399555497

Anderson, Laurie Halse-- Fever 1793  (580L) ISBN: 978-0689848919

Coelho, Paulo-- The Alchemist  (910L) ISBN: 978-0062315007

Crutcher, Chris-- Whale Talk (1000L) ISBN: 978-0062687753

Lupica, Mike-- Hero (730L) ISBN: 978-0142419601

Paolini, Christopher-- Eragon (Inheritance) (710L) ISBN: 978-0375826696

Park, Linda Sue-- When My Name Was Keoko  (610L) ISBN: 978-0547722399

Paulsen, Gary-- Soldier’s Heart  (1000L) ISBN: 978-0440228387

Nonfiction/Informational Text:

Ayer, Eleanor-- Parallel Journeys  (1050L) ISBN: 978-0689832369

Bradley, James-- Flags of our Fathers  (950L) ISBN: 978-0553380293

Crutcher, Chris-- King of the Mild Frontier: An Ill-Advised Autobiography (1180L) ISBN: 978-0060502515

Dahl, Roald-- Boy: Tales of Childhood (1090L) ISBN: 978-0142413814

Fey, Tina-- Bossypants (950L) ISBN: 978-0316056878

Odom Jr., Leslie-- Failing Up (930L) ISBN: 978-1250139962

Park, Linda Sue-- A Long Walk to Water  (720L) ISBN: 978-0547577319

Engle, Margarita-- The Lightning Dreamer: Cuba’s Greatest Abolitionists  (Lexile n/a) ISBN: 978-0544541122

*If you have any questions, please feel free to email at anytime. For RISING 9th graders: Please check with your new high school about Summer Reading, as no titles were provided at the time of publication.

Annotations and SIGNPOSTS: What does this look like?

ALL Cavaliers students needs to annotate their Summer Reading title. For rising 7th and 8th graders, for your title, please apply strategies that your Language Arts teachers have taught you over the past two years.  For rising 6th graders and other interested students, please use the links and documents below.

When annotating, rising 7th and 8th grade students should follow the NOTICE, NAME, and EXPLAIN format described below:


Highlighting, underlining, or other text marking indicating important text.


Name the annotation. What is it? Is it a signpost? Is it a literary element?


Why is this text significant? Answer the signpost question. Connect the literary element to a larger idea from the text. (Ex. Strong language contributes to tone of…

Explain the immediate significance and the overall impact on the book as a whole.

Note: Depending on the length of the chapters in the selected book, students should have about 2-4 annotations per chapter.

Consider using the Big Three Questions from Beers and Probst as an entry for annotating a text, especially a work of nonfiction. Here is an electronic link to BIG THREE QUESTIONS (or you can copy/paste it into your browser): BIG THREE QUESTIONS

Consider marking the text for Signposts. Please see  “Signposts” documents for a reminder of what each signpost means and for its correlating symbol.

  • Here is an electronic link to the FICTION Signposts (or you can copy/paste it into your browser): FICTION Signpost Link

  • Here is an electronic link to the NONFICTION Signposts (or you can copy/paste it into your browser):

NONFICTION Signpost Link


An annotation is a note, comment, or concise statement of the key idea(s) in a text or a portion of a text. Annotations are commonly used in reading instruction and in research. Please see the sample pages of Sharon Draper’s Out of My Mind (see attachment below) for a model on annotating a text. Not every page needs to look like the model. Annotating is meant to slow readers down and engage them more deeply in reading comprehension and questioning the text. It is NOT about filling the page for quantity. The parent model linked on the school webpage is meant to showcase many types of annotations and Signposts. Students do NOT need to annotate every page in a book. Annotating is meant to be a personal and organic process that will aid in comprehension, not just a completion activity.

Please note that we have included a student model, also found on the school webpage, for annotations, as well. These pages were done by a past 6th grader in the spring.

Parents: For further reading on annotations, please enjoy Mortimer Adler’s short work “How to Mark a Book” at this link: "How to Mark a Book" text