Summer Reading

Mrs. Duncalfe's English Classes: Summer 2015

English I: Summer Reading for Incoming Ninth Graders


  • Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury
  • Five People You Meet in Heaven by Mitch Albom
  • The Last Lecture by Randy Pausch



Along with your summer reading, you will be required to complete particular types of writing assignments connected to Fahrenheit 451. Exams will be given over Five People You Meet in Heaven and The Last Lecture. In addition to this, work will be completed in your English class over the book Fahrenheit 451.


All assignments will be placed within a bracketed folder with a cover sheet. All writing will be typed and double-spaced for this project using size 12 Times New Roman font.

A heading in large print should be on the outside of the folder with your name. A table of contents page must be created and placed in the front of the folder; therefore, all pages will be numbered. This is a formal assignment; use formal language – not slang! Your writing assignments MUST be put together in the following order:


Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury


  1. Explain the significance of the title to the meaning of the book. Authors do not choose a title randomly; usually, it is symbolic in some way or some type of narrative hook. (1/2 - 1 page)
  2. Describe the setting – time period, location, etc. – and explain why it is important to the book (why the story is set where it is).
  3. Identify the main conflict (*type and *category) and describe in detail (1/2 page):
  • Type – internal or external conflict
  • Category – man vs. man; man vs. himself; man vs. nature; man vs. society
4. Identify and discuss the main character(s). Identify all major components of characterization the author used to describe this person(s).
  • Characterization Techniques – physical appearance, dialogue, inner thoughts, actions, and what others say about them. Remember these are the details the author uses to help the reader get to know the main character(s) as a person
5. Describe what event caused a major change in the main character(s) and explain how the character(s) changed. These changes may have been a consequence of a choice, a conflict, a display of some outstanding trait like courage, or even a result of events that occur during the novel. (1/2 – 1 page)

6. In a dialectical journal (two column style) copy ten of your favorite sentences from the book in the left column. In the right column explain how your quote relates to the book and add a personal response to the quote (what you think about it, why you like it or don’t like it, how it makes you feel.) THIS NEEDS TO BE DONE AS YOU READ THE BOOK! You should divide your book into 3-4 sections and pull quotes from each section.


Any questions this summer concerning this assignment may be directed to me at

qduncalfe@stmaryslgv.org.


It is imperative you purchase your own copies of the books so that you can make notations in them as you read. This is an important part of the writing process. The following links may also be helpful:

Randy Pausch Last Lecture: Achieving Your Childhood Dreams

English II: Summer Reading for Incoming Tenth Graders


  • The Help by Kathryn Stockett
  • The Color of Water by James McBride



Along with your summer reading, you will be required to complete particular types of writing assignments connected to The Help. Exams will be given over The Help and The Color of Water. All assignments will be placed within a bracketed folder with a cover sheet. All writing will be typed and double-spaced for this project using size 12 Times New Roman font! A heading in large print should be on the outside of the folder with your name. A table of contents page must be created and placed in the front of the folder; therefore, all pages will be numbered. This is a formal assignment; use formal language – not slang! Your writing assignments MUST be put together in the following order:


The Color of Water by James McBride


1. Explain the significance of the title to the meaning of the book. Authors do

not choose a title randomly; usually, it is symbolic in some way or some type of

narrative hook. (1/2 - 1 page)

2. Describe the setting – time period, location, etc. – and explain why it is

important to the book (why the story is set where it is).

3. Identify the main conflict (*type and *category) and describe in detail (1/2 page)


  • Type – internal or external conflict
  • Category – man vs. man; man vs. himself; man vs. nature; man vs. society


4. Identify and discuss the main character(s). Identify all major components of

characterization the author used to describe this person(s).


  • Characterization Techniques – physical appearance, dialogue, inner thoughts,


actions, and what others say about them. Remember these are the details the

author uses to help the reader get to know the main character(s) as a person.

5. Describe what event caused a major change in the main character(s) and explain how the character(s) changed. These changes may have been a consequence of a choice, a conflict, a display of some outstanding trait like courage, or even a result of events that occur during the novel. (1/2 – 1 page)


The Help by Kathryn Stockett


6. Identify three truths about human nature from the book, give an example from the story that illustrates each, and briefly discuss. Don’t forget to use transitional words in your writing and to employ complete sentence construction.

7. In a dialectical journal (two column style) copy ten of your favorite sentences from the book in the left column. In the right column explain how your quote relates to the book and add a personal response to the quote (what you think about it, why you like it or don’t like it, how it makes you feel.) THIS NEEDS TO BE DONE AS YOU READ THE BOOK! You should divide your book into 3-4 sections and pull quotes from each section.


Any questions this summer concerning this assignment may be directed to me at

qduncalfe@stmaryslgv.org.


It is imperative you purchase your own copies of the books so that you can make

notations in them as you read. This is an important part of the writing process.

The Help - You is important

English IV: Summer Reading for Incoming Seniors

The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho

About the Teacher

My name is Querida Duncalfe, and this is my second year teaching at St. Mary's. I began my teaching career in the fall of 2004, and I taught high school English for two years before taking time off to start a family with my husband Andrew. Now that my children are school-aged, I'm delighted to go to school with them every day, as they themselves are St. Mary's Knights.


This year, I'll be teaching English I, English II, English IV, and Professional Communications & Speech. Additionally, I'll be working to complete our school's yearbook and implement a mock trial-type program that will allow students to practice their public speaking and learn how to build and defend a case.


I look forward to partnering with you parents and students this year as we learn and grow together.


Sincerely,

Querida Duncalfe