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High School Summer Reading Requirement

summer reading list

Nathanael Greene Academy

9th-12th grades

Summer Reading for 2017-18 School Year


Reading is an important skill that benefits the student in so many ways.

Students who read all year long are able to increase reading comprehension, reading levels, and critical thinking skills. Each student must read the required book, A Separate Peace by John Knowles, and complete the following assignments before the first day of school.


On the first day of school, bring this form, stapled to your typed answers, to your English or Bible class. Since we are on the block schedule, some will not have English until second semester, but the summer reading is still due and will be the first grade in English/Bible classes.

Even though you are not writing an essay, each answer should be written in a complete paragraphs of a minimum of eight sentences each.


After reading A Separate Peace by John Knowles, answer the following questions in fully-developed paragraphs:

  1. Write an introduction to the main character. Describe him physically, mentally, and spiritually. What are his strengths?  What are his weaknesses? What does the author say directly about this character and what does he hint at indirectly to develop his personality and demeanor?
  2. The theme of a story is an over-arching idea or principle the author is trying to draw attention to or highlight. In a paragraph, identify one clearly presented theme of this novel. Explain one or two scenes from the book that help support the theme you have selected.
  3. In every story, a character must face a difficult decision. Very often, the decision this character makes influences all of the remaining events in a story. Also, this decision frequently comes at the end of a long mental or physical struggle for the character. Briefly describe an important decision one character had to make. Be sure to show why it was important, and explain why the character made the decision he or she did.
  4. Often, when discussing the development of a story, one mentions conflict. Conflict can be defined as the meeting of two opposing forces and the problems or events that result from this meeting. For A Separate Peace, explain what you think the main conflict is, and then offer one or two episodes from the text that show how this conflict was explored in the book. How was this conflict resolved and was it a healthy, wise, and biblical resolution for all characters involved?
  5. What did you like about this novel, and what was your least favorite part?  You may include plot events, themes, writer’s style, historical setting, etc.