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Summer Reading List

Chartiers Valley Recommended Reading List 

The following books are recommendations for incoming 3rd thru 9th grade students. This is not a mandatory assignment, but rather, strongly suggested to avoid summer loss of fluency, comprehension; and to promote a love of reading.  Students are encouraged to read independently when possible.

 

By maintaining an active literacy life over the summer, you ensure your child the best start to the next grade level.

 

Look for a full list of suggested titles for reading pleasure on the “Seize the Summer!” website.

 

Happy Reading!

 

Entering 3rd Grade

A-Z Mysteries, The Canary Caper (or any other book from the series) by Ron Roy

Level N

C is for Canary . . . Green Lawn has a pet problem! Dink’s neighbor can’t find her canary. Ruth Rose’s cat, Tiger, has also disappeared. Then the kids hear about two more missing critters. Is there a pet-napper in town? Dink, Josh, and Ruth Rose are on the case!

 

 

The Courage of Sarah Noble by Alice Dalgliesh

Level O

In 1707, young Sarah Noble and her father traveled through the wilderness to build a new home for their family. "Keep up your courage, Sarah Noble," her mother had said, but Sarah found that it was not always easy to feel brave inside. The dark woods were full of animals and Indians, too, and Sarah was only eight!  The true story of Sarah's journey is inspiring. And as she cares for her father and befriends her Indian neighbors, she learns that to be afraid and to be brave is the greatest courage of all.

 

 

Stone Fox by John Reynolds Gardnier and Greg Hargreaves

Level P

 Based on a Rocky Mountain legend, Stone Fox tells the story of Little Willy, who lives with his grandfather in Wyoming. When Grandfather falls ill, he is no longer able to work the farm, which is in danger of foreclosure. Little Willy is determined to win the National Dogsled Race—the prize money would save the farm and his grandfather. But he isn't the only one who desperately wants to win. Willy and his brave dog Searchlight must face off against experienced racers, including a Native American man named Stone Fox, who has never lost a race.

 

 

Entering 4th Grade

Tales of the Fourth Grade Nothing by Judy Blume

Level Q

Two is a crowd when Peter and his little brother, Fudge, are in the same room. Grown-ups think Fudge is absolutely adorable, but Peter and his pet turtle, Dribble, know the truth. From throwing temper tantrums to smearing mashed potatoes on the wall, Fudge causes mischief wherever he goes!

 

 

We’ll Never Forget You, Roberto Clemente by Trudie Engel

Level Q

The biography of this star hitter tells of his youth in Puerto Rico and his career with the Pittsburgh Pirates.

 

 

Sarah, Plain and Tall by Patricia MacLachlan

Level R

Set in the late nineteenth century and told from young Anna's point of view, Sarah, Plain and Tall tells the story of how Sarah Elisabeth Wheaton comes from Maine to the prairie to answer Papa's advertisement for a wife and mother. Before Sarah arrives, Anna and her younger brother, Caleb, wait and wonder. Will Sarah be nice? Will she sing? Will she stay?

 

 

Entering 5th Grade

Hatchet by Gary Paulsen

Level R

Thirteen-year-old Brian Robeson is on his way to visit his father when the single-engine plane in which he is flying crashes. Suddenly, Brian finds himself alone in the Canadian wilderness with nothing but a tattered Windbreaker and the hatchet his mother gave him as a present—and the dreadful secret that has been tearing him apart since his parent’s divorce. But now Brian has no time for anger, self pity, or despair—it will take all his know-how and determination, and more courage than he knew he possessed, to survive.

 

 

Rules by Cynthia Lord

Level R

Twelve-year-old Catherine just wants a normal life. Which is near impossible when you have a brother with autism and a family that revolves around his disability. She's spent years trying to teach David the rules from "a peach is not a funny-looking apple" to "keep your pants on in public"---in order to head off David's embarrassing behaviors.

But the summer Catherine meets Jason, a surprising, new sort-of friend, and Kristi, the next-door friend she's always wished for, it's her own shocking behavior that turns everything upside down and forces her to ask: What is normal?

 

 

The Missing Gator of Gumbo Limbo by Jean Craighead George

Level S

Twelve-year-old Catherine just wants a normal life. Which is near impossible when you have a brother with autism and a family that revolves around his disability. She's spent years trying to teach David the rules from "a peach is not a funny-looking apple" to "keep your pants on in public"---in order to head off David's embarrassing behaviors.

But the summer Catherine meets Jason, a surprising, new sort-of friend, and Kristi, the next-door friend she's always wished for, it's her own shocking behavior that turns everything upside down and forces her to ask: What is normal?

 

 

Entering 6th Grade

  1. Write a weekly journal of activities you enjoyed doing this summer. Include sensory details. Practice grammar usage, identify and highlight verbs, adjectives, and pronouns!
  2. https://www.ixl.com   Language Arts Practice Website
  3. https://www.noredink.com/ Grammar practice
  4. TDA Practice: three paragraph journal entry--include intro, body, and conclusion. Also include an article that is related to you personally (text to self connection).  Quote the evidence from the article and explain how you can relate personally. 
  5. Vocabulary practice-- choose three words that you have never heard before in your life, then include them in your daily journal, but remember to conjugate them properly!
  6. Join a Library summer Reading Club. Example, Scott Library
  7. Choose at least two of the three 5th-6th grade independent novels.
    1. The Wonder, Emma Donoghue
    2. Walk Two Moons, Sharon Creech
    3. The Book Thief, Markus Zusak


 

Entering 7th Grade

Eleven by Tom Rogers

Alex Douglas always wanted to be a hero. But nothing heroic ever happened to Alex. Nothing, that is, until his eleventh birthday. When Alex rescues a stray dog as a birthday gift to himself, he doesn't think his life can get much better. Radar, his new dog, pretty much feels the same way. But this day has bigger things in store for both of them.

 

This is a story about bullies and heroes. About tragedy and hope. About enemies with two legs and friends with four, and pesky little sisters and cranky old men, and an unexpected lesson in kindness delivered with a slice of pizza. This is Eleven: the journey of a boy turning eleven on 9/11.

 

 

Bomb: Race to Build—and Steal—the World’s Most Dangerous Weapon by Steve Sheinkin

In December of 1938, a chemist in a German laboratory made a shocking discovery: When placed next to radioactive material, a Uranium atom split in two. That simple discovery launched a scientific race that spanned 3 continents. In Great Britain and the United States, Soviet spies worked their way into the scientific community; in Norway, a commando force slipped behind enemy lines to attack German heavy-water manufacturing; and deep in the desert, one brilliant group of scientists was hidden away at a remote site at Los Alamos. This is the story of the plotting, the risk-taking, the deceit, and genius that created the world's most formidable weapon. This is the story of the atomic bomb.

 

 

The Boy on Top of the Mountain by John Boyne

From the author of The Boy in the Striped Pajamas comes another extraordinary story of World War II and innocence in the face of evil.

When Pierrot becomes an orphan, he must leave his home in Paris for a new life with his aunt Beatrix, a servant in a wealthy Austrian household. But this is no ordinary time, for it is 1935 and the Second World War is fast approaching; and this is no ordinary house, for this is the Berghof, the home of Adolf Hitler.

Pierrot is quickly taken under Hitler's wing and thrown into an increasingly dangerous new world: a world of terror, secrets, and betrayal from which he may never be able to escape. This title has Common Core connections

 

 

Drowned City Hurricane Katrina and New Orleans by Don Brown

On August 29, 2005, Hurricane Katrina's monstrous winds and surging water overwhelmed the protective levees around low-lying New Orleans, Louisiana. Eighty percent of the city flooded, in some places under twenty feet of water. Property damages across the Gulf Coast topped $100 billion. One thousand eight hundred and thirty-three people lost their lives. The riveting tale of this historic storm and the drowning of an American city is one of selflessness, heroism, and courage—and also of incompetence, racism, and criminality.

  

  

Entering 8th Grade

The House of Scorpion by Nancy Farmer

Matteo Alacrán was not born; he was harvested.

His DNA came from El Patrón, lord of a country called Opium--a strip of poppy fields lying between the United States and what was once called Mexico. Matt's first cell split and divided inside a petri dish. Then he was placed in the womb of a cow, where he continued the miraculous journey from embryo to fetus to baby. He is a boy now, but most consider him a monster--except for El Patrón. El Patrón loves Matt as he loves himself, because Matt is himself.

 

As Matt struggles to understand his existence, he is threatened by a sinister cast of characters, including El Patrón's power-hungry family, and he is surrounded by a dangerous army of bodyguards. Escape is the only chance Matt has to survive. But escape from the Alacrán Estate is no guarantee of freedom, because Matt is marked by his difference in ways he doesn't even suspect.

 

 

A Long Way Gone: Memoirs of a Boy Soldier by Ishmeal Beah

What is war like through the eyes of a child soldier? How does one become a killer? How does one stop? Child soldiers have been profiled by journalists, and novelists have struggled to imagine their lives. But until now, there has not been a first-person account from someone who came through this hell and survived.

 

In A Long Way Gone, Beah, now twenty-five years old, tells a riveting story: how at the age of twelve, he fled attacking rebels and wandered a land rendered unrecognizable by violence. By thirteen, he'd been picked up by the government army, and Beah, at heart a gentle boy, found that he was capable of truly terrible acts.

 

 

Brown Girl Dreaming by Jacqueline Woodson

Raised in South Carolina and New York, Woodson always felt halfway home in each place. In vivid poems, she shares what it was like to grow up as an African American in the 1960s and 1970s, living with the remnants of Jim Crow and her growing awareness of the Civil Rights movement. Touching and powerful, each poem is both accessible and emotionally charged, each line a glimpse into a child’s soul as she searches for her place in the world. Woodson’s eloquent poetry also reflects the joy of finding her voice through writing stories, despite the fact that she struggled with reading as a child. Her love of stories inspired her and stayed with her, creating the first sparks of the gifted writer she was to become.

 

 

March Series by John Lewis and Andrew Aydin

Congressman John Lewis (GA-5) is an American icon, one of the key figures of the civil rights movement. His commitment to justice and nonviolence has taken him from an Alabama sharecropper's farm to the halls of Congress, from a segregated schoolroom to the 1963 March on Washington, and from receiving beatings from state troopers to receiving the Medal of Freedom from the first African-American president.

 

March is a vivid first-hand account of John Lewis' lifelong struggle for civil and human rights, meditating in the modern age on the distance traveled since the days of Jim Crow and segregation.

 

 

Entering 9th Grade

Red Scarf Girl: A Memoir of the Cultural Revolution by Ji-Li Lang

Moving, honest, and deeply personal, Red Scarf Girl is the incredible true story of one girl’s courage and determination during one of the most terrifying eras of the twentieth century.

It's 1966, and twelve-year-old Ji-li Jiang has everything a girl could want: brains, popularity, and a bright future in Communist China. But it's also the year that China's leader, Mao Ze-dong, launches the Cultural Revolution—and Ji-li's world begins to fall apart. Over the next few years, people who were once her friends and neighbors turn on her and her family, forcing them to live in constant terror of arrest. And when Ji-li's father is finally imprisoned, she faces the most difficult dilemma of her life.

 

 

Fever 1793 by Laurie Halse Anderson

During the summer of 1793, Mattie Cook lives above the family coffee shop with her widowed mother and grandfather. Mattie spends her days avoiding chores and making plans to turn the family business into the finest Philadelphia has ever seen. But then the fever breaks out.

 

Disease sweeps the streets, destroying everything in its path and turning Mattie's world upside down. At her feverish mother's insistence, Mattie flees the city with her grandfather. But she soon discovers that the sickness is everywhere, and Mattie must learn quickly how to survive in a city turned frantic with disease.

 

 

The Complete Persepolis by Marjane Satrapi

Persepolis is the story of Satrapi's unforgettable childhood and coming of age within a large and loving family in Tehran during the Islamic Revolution; of the contradictions between private life and public life in a country plagued by political upheaval; of her high school years in Vienna facing the trials of adolescence far from her family; of her homecoming--both sweet and terrible; and, finally, of her self-imposed exile from her beloved homeland. It is the chronicle of a girlhood and adolescence at once outrageous and familiar, a young life entwined with the history of her country yet filled with the universal trials and joys of growing up.

 

Entering 10th-12th Grade

AP Research (Capstone): Students will read, annotate and analyze Part 1 and 2 of The Craft of Research (103 pgs).   Then the students will respond to organized spreadsheets pertaining to their specific research topic ideas utilizing Google Docs.

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2030 Swallow Hill Road
Pittsburgh, PA 15220
Phone:412-429-2201