Upper School Summer Reading 2014

Please refer to the grids below to find assignments by department and course.

All summer reading assignments should be completed by the first day of school.  If you have any questions, please email each department chair as listed below.

There is no required summer reading or work for classes offered in the arts.

English Course Summer Readings

Contact Mr. Joe Cote, English Department Chair, with questions about English class summer reading assignments.

Course Reading / Assignment

9th Grade English

Goddess of Yesterday, by Caroline B. Cooney, Laurel Leaf,
ISBN: 0440229308

A written response of two pages should focus on the protagonist’s journey to Troy and her experience of the principal characters associated with that great ancient city. The response should also consider her connection to the Greek pantheon and the resourcefulness she demonstrates when Troy is besieged by the forces of Menelaus.

English II

Read Beowulf (Signet Classic). A written response of two pages should focus on the culture of rewards presented in the epic poem. Specifically, use textual evidence to discuss how both tangible riches and intangible glory are bestowed upon Beowulf after each battle. 

 

English III

The Things They Carried     O’Brien     Penguin Books     ISBN 014014773X

In the story Sweetheart of the Song Tra Bong, Mitchell Sanders says the following about Rat Kiley’s story-telling:

Whenever he told the story, Rat had a tendency to stop now and then, interrupting the flow, inserting little clarifications or bits of analysis and personal opinion. It was a bad habit, Mitchell Sanders said, because all that matters is the raw material, the stuff itself, and you can't clutter it up with your own half-baked commentary. That just breaks the spell. It destroys the magic. What you have to do, Sanders said, is trust your own story. Get the hell out of the way and let it tell itself. (O'Brien 116)

A written response of two pages should focus on the following:           

How does the dispute between Rat and Sanders reflect O'Brien's approach to story-telling in the narrative as a whole? Be specific.

Writing as Readers (Adv)

One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest by Ken Kesey

Choose a particular theme, element, motif, conflict, symbol, extended metaphor, or juxtaposition that interests you and seems important to Kesey's novel. You might even choose one particular scene that is essential to the action and conflict of the book. Or, you might consider sociological elements such as gender roles, emasculation, race, social power, counter-culture, insanity, labels, etc. Choose something in the book that interests you.

For the first day of school, write a one-page informal response paper on your chosen topic. This should not be a rough draft of an essay. Try to make it be more observational and reactionary than argument-driven. You should, however, try to choose a topic rich enough that it would benefit from closer study.

In the early weeks of the school year, you will be developing and writing a full-length analysis on particular elements of the writing style of One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest. This response paper is the first step in that process. It will garner feedback from Mr. Harris and from a peer that you will use to expand it to a formal assignment.~

Other Gods and Other Monsters (Adv)

True West by Sam Shepard Samuel French ISBN 0573 61728 7

A written response of two pages should focus on the following:

The first act of Shepard’s True West should recall Miller’s Death of a Salesman in that it proceeds along realistic lines and examines Austin and Lee in the context of heredity and environment. As the act draws to a close, the brothers seem poised to “evolve,” both individually and in terms of their relationship. However, the second act quickly diverges from this pattern and descends into increasingly “absurd” situations that lead ultimately to a stalemate. How does the conflict in form in Shepard’s play perfectly reflect the antagonistic relationship of its principal characters?

Strange Plays (Adv)

A Doll's House by Henrik Ibsen, Samuel French
ISBN 10: 0573608148, ISBN 13: 978-0573608148 

A written response of two pages should focus on Nora’s movement from ignorance to knowledge. In particular, students should consider how the protagonist’s attitude toward her husband changes over the course of the play. Students should also consider how Nora’s relationship with her husband recalls the unhealthy relationship between Biff and Willy Loman.

French Course Summer Readings

Contact Mr. Louis Cohen, Modern Languages Department Chair, with questions about French class summer readings.

Course Reading / Assignment
All French Courses

Suggested Readings

ONLY ADVANCED COURSES have REQUIRED WORK (see below for Topics in French Language & Culture).  The following are merely SUGGESTIONS for interested students.

Appropriate for any French language students:  The Three Musketeers, The Count of Monte Cristo, or The Man in the Iron Mask by Alexandre Dumas. Furthermore, The French Way, by Ross Steele, offers and engaging and amusing look at the French culture, character, and language.

Rising juniors and seniors may consider such classic works in translation as Madame Bovary by Flaubert, The Red and the Black by Stendhal, or Germinal by Zola.

The following are suggested for students who wish to do some reading in French, according to their level of study: LES VACANCES DU PETIT NICOLAS by Sempé/Goscinny for rising level IV students; SUIVEZ LA PISTE by Emile de Harven (audio version – http://eloeffler.basd.k12.wi.us/fr/slp/) or LE VOL DE LA JACONDE by H. Zahler for rising level III students; UN ETE PAS COMME LES AUTRES by H. Zahler for rising level II students.

Topics in French Language & Culture (Adv)

Students will receive a packet by early June with a cover letter explaining the grammar, reading and writing assignments to be completed over the summer. Please keep your books from this year and be attentive to due dates for the summer work.

History Course Summer Readings

Contact Mr. Ben Ladd History Department Chair with questions about History class summer reading assignments.

Course Reading / Assignment
Ancient World History

History Begins at Sumer: Thirty-Nine Firsts in Recorded History, Samuel Noah Kramer. University of Pennsylvania, 1981  
ISBN-10: 0812212762 / ISBN-13: 978-0812212761.

Read introduction, chapters 1, 9, 14, 25. Instead of buying the entire book, you may purchase a packet with the assigned chapters at the Connecticut College bookstore.  Write a 1-2 page journal in which you discuss what you learned about the Sumerians and what you learned about how historians and archaeologists study ancient civilizations.

Modern World History

The Prince, Niccolò Machiavelli. Although many versions are available, you should purchase the Penguin Classics edition (John Bull, translator, Anthony Grafton, introduction) ISBN-10: 0140449159 / ISBN-13: 978-0140449150.  Read Introduction and Chapters 8, 17, 18, 21, 23, and 25.

Write a 2-3 page typed reading journal. In your journal, comment on one topic from each of the assigned chapters and Grafton’s Introduction. This does not need to be written as a formal essay; we are most interested in your reaction to main ideas from the assigned sections of The Prince.

US History 

Read one of the following books:

Caleb's Crossing, by Geraldine Brooks Penguin Books, 2012. ISBN-10: 9780143121077ISBN-13: 978-0143121077

Creek Mary's Blood, by Dee Brown Henry Holt, 1980 used or Kindle edition

Rise to Rebellion, by Jeff Shaara Ballantine Books, 2004.ISBN-10: 0345427548 / ISBN-13: 978-0345427540

Washington's Secret War: The Hidden History of Valley Forge, by Thomas Fleming Harper Perennial, 2006. ISBN-10: 0060872934ISBN-13: 978-0060872939

Write a short (2-3 page) journal response to your chosen book. Provide analysis and your own thoughts about the text, not simply general plot summary.

US History (Adv)

Confederates in the Attic: Dispatches from the Unfinished Civil War, Tony Horwitz. Vintage, 1999.
ISBN-10: 067975833X / ISBN-13: 978-0679758334

Write a short (2-3 page) journal response to the book.  Provide analysis and your own thoughts on the book, not just a general plot summary.

Textbook assignment: American History: A Survey (14th ed.), Alan Brinkley. Glencoe/McGraw Hill 2009
ISBN 13 978 0 07 340695-4

Read chapters 1-2 and take notes on separate paper (maximum of 3 pages of notes per chapter).  There will be an open note quiz in the first week of school.  Note: if you buy a used copy of the textbook, make sure that it has little or no underlining/highlighting. 

Economics

The Undercover Economist, Tim Harford. Random House, 2007. ISBN-10: 0345494016 ISBN-13: 978-0345494016

Write a short (2-3 page) journal response to the book.  Provide analysis and your own thoughts on the book, not just a general plot summary.

History of the Sixties

The Strawberry Statement: Notes of a College Revolutionary,  James Simon Kunen ISBN-13: 978-1881089520ISBN-10: 1881089525

Note: Purchase a used copy of this book or an eBook. Amazon has many affordable used copies and a Kindle edition for $6.99. Please do not spend $33.50 for the reprinted edition.

Write a short journal response to the book. Provide analysis and your own thoughts about the text, not simply general plot summary.

Current Issues in Government

 

Read the following selections from The Lanahan Readings in the American Polity:
* Michael Kammen, “A Machine That Would Go of Itself” (#11)
* David Price, “The Congressional Experience (#31)
* Craig Rimmerman, “The Rise of the Plebiscitary Presidency” (#36)
* David O’Brien, “Storm Center” (#45)
* Anthony Lewis, “Gideon’s Trumpet” (#48)
Write a 2-page journal response in which you give your own thoughts and analysis of each selection.

 

Modern German History (Adv)

The Search for Major Plagge: The Nazi Who Saved Jews, Michael Good. Fordham U P, 2006
ISBN-10: 0823224414  ISBN-13: 978-0823224418

Write a short (2-3 page) journal response to the book.  Provide analysis and your own thoughts on the book, not just a general plot summary.

Pursuit of Freedom Fences, August Wilson. Plume, 1986.
ISBN-10: 9780452264014 / ISBN-13: 978-0452264014

Write a 2-3 page essay in which you:
1. Identify and explain the themes and events within the play that are specific to African Americans.
2. Identify and explain the themes and events within the play that are common to most families.

Modern Middle East (Adv)
Read the article, “The Politics of Rage: Why Do They Hate Us?” by Fareed Zakaria, published shortly after 9-11, and “Introduction: 9-11 in Historical Perspective” from the Gelvin Modern Middle East text. Write a 2-page journal response in which you compare these two different articles about 9-11.

 

Give your own thoughts on the importance of 9-11 in the context of US foreign policy in the Middle East.

Latin Course Summer Readings

Contact Ms. Melissa Moss, Classics Department Chair, with questions about Classics summer reading assignments.

Course Reading / Assignment
Latin V (Adv)

In preparation for Latin V (Advanced), students should read Vergil's Aeneid in English.

Any translation will do, however Fagles' translation of the Aeneid, ISBN 978-0143106296, is recommended. This text is available in paperback and electronically for the Nook and Kindle.

All Classics Courses

Suggested Reading

The Classics Department also recommends a number of interesting books to read that concern the Classics for students or adults who are interested. Titles include:

  • Robert Harris's novels Pompeii, Imperium, and Conspirata (especially for CLIII and CLIV students)
  • For lovers of literary novels:  Achilles: A Novel by Elizabeth Cook, The Dream of Scipio by Ian Pears, The Love Artist by Jane Alison, The Ides of March by Thornton Wilder, and Lavinia by Ursula LeGuin.
  • On the lighter side:  Lindsey Davis's Marcus Didius Falco Mysteries or Steven Saylor's Roma Sub Rosa series - two ancient private eyes.
  • For younger readers: books by Rosemary Sutcliff and Caroline Lawrence
  • Mythology:  D'aulaire's Book of Greek Myths is good for young readers

Math Course Summer Work

Contact Mr. Scott Hockford Mathematics Department Chair, with questions about Math class summer assignments.

Course Reading / Assignment
Algebra II / Algebra II (Honors)

Complete attached review packet 
Algebra II-Algebra II (Honors) Summer Work.pdf

Precalculus (Honors)

From Prerequisites Chapter Pages 1 – 60

Complete following problems: page 60, #3-7, 13-33, 36-50 even (follow directions as to methods of solution), 54-70 even, 71

Calculus I (Advanced)

From Chapter 1 (Prerequisites for Calculus) – Chapter Review

Page 56 #1 – 18 all, 21 – 36 by 3, 38 – 41 all, 46b, 47b, 53, 55 – 70 all

Use your TI graphing calculator frequently on many of these problems so you are once again comfortable with your TI.

Calculus II (Advanced)

Derivative Review: page 181, #1-16, 35, 38, 70

Integration Review: page 337, #1-6, 25-44

Science Course Summer Work

Contact Rachel Thomas-Shapiro, Science Department Chair, with questions about Science class summer readings.

Course Reading / Assignment
Molecular and Cellular Biology

Complete the following assignment:

MCB (adv) summer work

Topics in General, Organic, and Biochemistry

Complete the following assignment:

Chem (adv) summer work 

Spanish Course Summer Readings

Contact Mr. Louis Cohen, Modern Languages Department Chair, with questions about Spanish class summer readings.

Course Reading / Assignment

All Spanish Courses

Suggested Readings

The following are merely SUGGESTIONS for interested students.

The following works are appropriate for Upper-School students: MIRACLE IN SEVILLE by James Michener, WHEN I WAS PUERTO RICAN and ALMOST A WOMAN by Esmeralda Santiago, FOR WHOM THE BELL TOLLS by Ernest Hemingway, and WAITING FOR SNOW IN HAVANA by Carlos Eire.

For advanced students (entering level four or higher), Santiago’s books are available in Spanish: CUANDO ERA PUERTORRIQUEÑA and CASI UNA MUJER. Advanced students may enjoy reading a HARRY POTTER book in Spanish, such as LA PIEDRA FILOSOFAL, the first of the series.  Also recommended is LA TESIS DE NANCY by Ramón Sender for an amusing look at the Spanish language and culture through the eyes of a young American studying in Spain.

Topics in Spanish Language & Culture (Adv) Students will receive a packet by early June with a cover letter explaining the grammar, reading and writing assignments to be completed over the summer. Please keep your books from this year and be attentive to due dates for the summer work.