|Small School, Open Minds • Michigan Reward School 2012|
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Comm. Resource: 994-2026
Jennifer Hein, Dean
In This Section
Summer Strategies: Ideas to Utilize Those Lazy, Crazy Days
Courtesy of Princeton Review
HIGH SCHOOL STUDENTS: TOP TEN PLAN FOR SUMMER LEARNING (so your parents will leave you alone)
4. LEARN SOMETHING
5. CHECK OUT COLLEGES
6. TAKE A HIKE
7. PREPARE FOR THE SAT/ACT (see related article below)
8. DO AT LEAST ONE THING THAT YOU’VE NEVER DONE BEFORE Experiment. Do something great. Act in a play, spend time with senior citizens, skydive, learn karate. The beauty of it is you’re making your own agenda. Nobody’s telling you what to do, so go crazy.
9. KEEP A JOURNAL
Courtesy of Princeton Review
Summer Programs: Why Should You Go?
by Neill Seltzer
Summer is special. It can’t come soon enough and it always ends too quickly. Summer is everything that school is not. Where school days often seem to drag on, during the summer whole months skip by before we know it. The learning that takes place in summer is of a different sort that the kind you find in school. Summers fill your head with dreams. Summer is about filling your time the way you choose. It is about discovering your own interests, at your own pace, and in your own way.
It doesn’t take too much imagination to see the three precious summers of high school as the three magic beans given to Jack in the fairy tale about the beanstalk. Jack plants his beans in the garden and out grows a magic beanstalk that reaches far beyond Jack’s limited horizons. When he began to climb, he had no idea what was at the other end. It wasn’t easy, but in the end he got his mother’s approval and the golden goose. Your high school summers are like that: If you plant them in fertile ground, they will lead to adventure.
The benefits of a summer adventure are very real. The opportunity to reinvent yourself, to discover that you are capable of so much more than you ever thought possible, to discover that other people hold the same fears and dreams that you never dared to share out loud, to collide with another culture, to work as a team, to overcome authentic challenges, to face questions of personal and cultural identity, to expand your view and understanding of the world, and, most of all, to discover who you are and where you come from by stepping out of your comfort zone, can only be described in one way: priceless.
And these direct benefits lead to residual benefits. You become a more interesting and thoughtful person, which can help with college admissions. You may have a clearer sense of your own personal interests and learning styles, which will lead to a more successful academic career. You will have a greater sense of self confidence, which will help overcome peer pressure, loneliness, and the feeling of being trapped. You will be better equipped to deal with the transitions that we all face from high school to college-or from dependent to independent-and better equipped to deal with the unexpected crises that come up in all lives.
Besides, how many new challenges do you think you are likely to bump into while sitting on your couch at home? Let’s look at some specific reasons to participate in a summer program.
Changing Your Perspective
Describing Your Summer Experience on a College App
Evaluating Summer Programs
Intern by Design: Creating Your Own Internship
Dry Run for College
Trying On a Life for Size
Push Personal Limits
This article is adapted from The 500 Best Ways for Teens to Spend the Summer by Neill Seltzer.
Summer Programs for High School and College Students
by Mike Pugh from Fastweb.com
Participating in a summer program is a great way to spend your summer. Not only do you experience life on a college campus, you get to explore new fields, earn college credit and make friendships that last a lifetime.
But if you’re planning on a summer program, you need to act now! Application deadlines come early in the year.
To get started, check out this directory of 25 popular programs for high school and/or college students. But don’t stop there! There are hundreds of summer programs being offered each year at colleges all over the country. No matter where you live or what you wish to study, chances are good that there’s a program being offered near you.
Abbey Road Overseas Programs
Academic Connections at the University of California – San Diego
American Collegiate Adventures
Bentley College – Camp Bentley
California State Summer School for Mathematics and Science
Carnegie Mellon University – Summer Academy for Mathematics and Science (SAMS)
Columbia College of Chicago
Concordia Language Villages
Cornell University – Summer Programs for High School Students
Duke University’s Pre-College Program
Harvard Summer School Secondary School Program (SSP)
Indiana University – High School Journalism Institute
Miami University of Ohio – Junior Scholars Program
National Youth Science Camp
New York Film Academy’s High School Workshop
Rhode Island School of Design Pre-College Program
Summer Study Programs
Summer Science Program (SSP) – Ojai, California
Telluride Association Summer Programs (TASP)
Tufts Summer High School Program
University of Chicago – The Young Scholars Program
University of Dallas Summer Study in Europe
University of New Hampshire Upward Bound Summer Program
University of Pennsylvania Programs for High School Students
To find a summer program close to home, call your local colleges or check their Web sites. Also, check out Science Service’s Student Programs by State listing at
Summertime SAT/ACT Prep
by Stephen Borkowski & Fastweb.com
It may be summer, but you know there’s an SAT and ACT bubble sheet in your future. Whether it’ll be your second attempt or first encounter with the SAT, summer is a great time to boost your test taking abilities. Here are some simple things you can do this summer that will serve you well on test day.
Students need to read something every day says William Sullivan, an SAT tutor in Colorado Springs, Colorado. Simply reading a newspaper lets students “see a lot of words in context that will help them when they’re reading on the SAT,” he says.
Reading will also help students with the SAT’s writing component. Students will need evidence to support arguments they make in their essays says Ian Simpson, the owner and president of Integrated Learning, a Los Angeles-based tutoring company. “One way to have a lot of examples is to do a lot of reading. Any good book will have several themes that will be relevant,” he says.
Try the Math
The majority of the math on the SAT consists of percentiles, fractions, algebra and geometry. Simpson says that the phrasing often confuses students more than the math concepts.
“Students have to have constant exposure to the style of the test. In my opinion, the test is a language by itself,” Simpson says. The more exposure a student has to the test’s language, the more comfortable they’ll be on test day.
Pack Some Flash Cards
Good test takers “keep their studying grouped into small chunks so that they’re never overwhelmed, and they’re able to take their time to assimilate all the information,” Sullivan says. Flash cards make the material portable and manageable.
There are quick tricks and strategies that can boost a student’s SAT score, but consistently studying some fundamentals will be more beneficial. “You can’t do the SAT on strategies alone,” Simpson says.
Starting early on your test preparation has the added benefit of alleviating stress on test day. If you’ve built a good foundation and taken some sample tests, when the bubble sheet hits your desk you’ll be ready for it.
Summer is a great time to read!
Reading is a life-time skill, so pick up some good books at a library or bookstore near you and let them do their magic!
SUMMER READING LIST
The Autobiography of Malcolm X: Alex Haley If you’re not sure who he is, definitely read this book. If you’ve heard of him and would like to learn more, the book will tell you everything.
Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil by John Berendt. Murder in Savannah. It’s a quirky and compelling true story.
Stranger in a Strange Land by Robert A. Heinlein. A human raised by Martians returns to Earth after thirty years.
The Secret History by Donna Tartt. Four Vermont College students get involved in a murder and prove how clever they really are.
Geek Love by Katherine Dunn. The oddly formed offspring of a circus family try to fit in despite their physical oddities.
One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest by Ken Kesey. Reading about life in a mental hospital is much better than being there. Also read Sometimes a Great Notion.
The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath. The story of a woman’s descent into madness.
Cat’s Cradle by Kurt Vonnegut. A bizarre mix of satire, fantasy, and realism dealing with atomic scientists and the end of the world.
Beloved by Toni Morrison. The story of a woman, her daughter, and her ghost daughter.
The Godfather by Mario Puzo. Check out the book about the Mafia that inspired several great movies.
The Joy Luck Club by Amy Tan. The stories of four Chinese mothers followed by the stories of their Americanized daughters.
The World According to Garp by John Irving. All of Irving’s books are good. We highly recommend him as an enjoyable contemporary author.
1984 by George Orwell. A chilling version of a totalitarian future that has come true in many respects.
The Chosen by Chaim Potok. Two New Yorkers from different worlds reconcile their differences and grow to be friends.
Bright Lights, Big City by Jay McInerney. A yuppie drug addict discovers he is his own worst enemy.
The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood. The America of the future has polluted itself into near extinction, and fertile women are enslaved by an aristocracy of religious fanatics.
Time and Again by Jack Finney. An artist travels back in time to
Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston. The experience of an African-American community in the early twentieth century.
Jitterbug Perfume by Tom Robbins. Follows the adventures of an immortal king through thousands of years of human history.
The Hunt for Red October by Tom Clancy. Like all of Clancy’s works, it’s full of in-depth stories about military strategy, spies, submarines, etc.
The Stand by Stephen King. A killer virus: It’s scary, weird, and gross. This one is loaded with SAT words.
Courtesy of Princeton Review
Boston Latin School Summer Reading List: Required of Students Entering Class in 2010
The three required titles for students entering Class I are: Cat’s Eye, The Kite Runner, and The Namesake.
Additional requirements are as follows:
• College English 12: In addition to the three required titles, please select two books from the list
below. You are also free to select among the required titles for AP Literature. If you are enrolled in
Facing History and Ourselves, you must read one of the titles on the list for that course. This may be
substituted for one of your two ‘free choice’ titles.
• Advanced Placement English: In addition to the required titles, you should read: The Stranger, by
Albert Camus; The Awakening, by Kate Chopin; Medea, by Euripides; Siddhartha, by Hermann Hesse;
and Sula, by Toni Morrison. If you are enrolled in Facing History and Ourselves, you must also
complete the summer reading requirement for that course.
• Students in both classes should keep in mind that the focus of this year’s reading is world literature.
You may wish to consider how these books help expand your scope as a reader and thinker.
English Department List—Class I
Allende, Isabel Eva Luna Eva loves a Turkish merchant, a guerrilla fighter, and a German immigrant while
triumphing over harsh reality through creativity and imagination.
The House of the Spirits Four generations of women with unnatural powers witness upheaval in South
Agee, James A Death in the Family A family reacts to the sudden accidental death of the father.
Austen, Jane Sense and Sensibility Happiness is a good balance of sense and sensibility.
Beckett, Samuel Waiting for Godot Despite Godot’s failure to appear, Vladimir and Estragon
endlessly hope for direction.
Buck, Pearl The Good Earth Before the Revolution a Chinese farmer and his wife go from poverty to land
Camus, Albert The Stranger Meursault is innocently drawn into a senseless murder in Algeria.
Capote, Truman Other Voices, Other Rooms Joel, searching for his father and himself, finds the unexpected.
Catton, Bruce A Stillness at Appomattox The conflict between Lee and Grant foreshadows the end of hope for
Cheever, John Collected Stories There can be darkness hidden behind happiness and success.
The Wapshot Chronicle The breakdown of a small fishing village and its people is revealed.
Chekhov, Anton The Three Sisters Lives are monetarily brightened when the imperial army comes to town.
Cheng, Nien Life and Death in Shanghai Six years as a political prisoner during the Chinese Cultural Revolution
Chopin, Kate The Awakening Edna's affair inflames her heart and blinds her to all else, even her children.
Desai, Anita Baumgartner’s Bombay A German Jew flees the Holocaust to remake his life in India.
Dickens, Charles Bleak House The legal system consumes the greedy and destroys the innocents.
Dostoevski, Fyodor The Brothers Karamazov Family drama depicts the Russian character and human nature.
Dreiser, Theodore An American Tragedy Dreams of wealth and status cause a poor boy to commit murder.
Eliot, George Adam Bede Women are destroyed by selfish men and their own weaknesses.
Erdrich, Louise Tracks White men’s greed destroys the Chipawa Indians as told from two opposing
Fadiman, Anne The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down: A Hmong Child, Her American Doctors, and the Collision of
Two Cultures Three-month-old Lia Lee arrives at the county hospital emergency room in Merced, California and,
along with her parents, is caught up in a chain of events from which neither she, her parents, nor her doctors
will ever recover.
Faulkner, William The Sound and the Fury Three children and the servants tell of the decline and fall of a
Flaubert, Gustave Madame Bovary Emma is unhappy with her marriage and feels trapped.
Friedman, Thomas From Beirut to Jerusalem The Middle East is explored in this thought provoking book.
Fuentes, Carlos The Death of Artemis Cruz This portrait of an individual comments on Mexican society and the
abuse of power.
Fuller, Charles A Soldier’s Play A murder occurs in a black regiment in Louisiana during WW II.
Fussell, Paul The Great War and Modern Memory The impact of this historical turning point on art and culture
Gardner, John Grendel The Beowolf epic is retold from Grendel's point of view.
Golden, Marita A Woman’s Place A college friendship of three black women in the 60’s guides them in later
Hardy,Thomas The Mayor of Casterbridge Michael tries to atone for selling his wife and daughter at a fair.
Hassler, Jon Staggerford A high school teacher's life turns into a tragicomedy.
Simon’s Night A professor goes to the strange, delightful and frightening world of a retirement home.
Love Hunter A dangerous love triangle exists among a dying man, his wife, and his best friend.
Heller, Joseph Catch-22 The dehumanizing effects of the WW II military bureaucracy are satirically depicted.
Hemingway, Ernest The Sun Also Rises The lost generation after WW I struggles to make sense of life.
Hesse, Hermann Demian Led by a school mate, Emil descends into a world of petty crime and revolt.
Steppenwolf The protagonist wrestles with the conflict between the flesh and the spirit.
Hijuelos, Oscar The Mambo King Plays Songs of Love Cesar and Nestor come to New York in 1949 to emulate
their heroes, Desi Arnaz and Xavier Cugart.
Ibsen, Henrick A Doll’s House A wife confronts a male dominated and authoritarian society.
Joyce, James Dubliners This series of short stories give an idea of the feelings and thinking of Dubliners.
Jin, Ha Waiting Winner of the National Book Award for Fiction in 1999, this novel explores the conflict
between the individual and society and between the urgings of the human heart and the shifting politics of the
Keneally, Thomas To Asmara An alienated Australian journalist travels through war torn Africa.
Kennedy, William Ironweed An ex-ballplayer, and part time grave digger, tries to make peace with ghosts of his
Kerouac, Jack On the Road The soul of the Beat Movement is revealed in this cross-country bohemian odyssey.
Kosinski, Jerzy The Painted Bird After losing his parents, a boy wanders throughout Europe after WW II.
Laguma, Alex A Walk in the Night This riveting book epitomizes the workings of the apartheid system.
Lawrence, D. H. Sons and Lovers An abnormally close mother-son relationship makes Paul unable to love as an
Mahfouz, Naguib Palace Walk The second of a trilogy tells of a Muslim family in Cairo during the early
Marquez, Gabriel Garcia One Hundred Years of Solitude A hundred years in the life of the village of Macondo
McCarthy, Cormac The Crossing This second book of The Border Trilogy follows teenage Billy from his ranch
Moon, William L.H. Blue Highways The protagonist takes a 13,000-mile journey along the blue roads of the
More, Thomas Utopia Four hundred years ago Thomas More dreamed of a better world.
Morrison, Toni Beloved Sethe lives an uneasy but comforting life with the spirit of her dead child, Beloved.
Mukherjee Bharati Jasmine Widowed at seventeen, Jasmine travels around America and experiences a
Nabokov, Vladimir Speak, Memory The author’s autobiographical work explores the experience of living a life
divided between two cultures and languages (Russian and English).
Naipaul, V. S. A Bend in the River An Indian man moves to a newly freed African nation where both struggle
to establish an identity.
Ngugui, James Decolonizing the Mind Collection of provocative and insightful essays on the pivotal role of
language in the formation of identity in post-colonial Africa.
Nicholas, Lynn Rape of Europa: The Fate of Europe’s Treasures in the Third Reich and the Second World War Winner
of the National Book Critics Circle Award, Nicholas’s work involves a cast of characters ranging from Hitler
and Goering to Gertrude Stein and Marc Chagall, along with works by artists from da Vinci to Picasso.
O’Neill, Eugene A Long Day’s Journey into Night An ostensibly respectful family is also greatly tormented.
Pasternak, Boris Doctor Zhivago A poet physician lives and loves during the Russian Revolution.
Paton, Alan Cry, the Beloved Country A Zulu pastor and his son experience the turbulence of South Africa.
Philbrick, Nathaniel In the Heart of the Sea: The Tragedy of the Whaleship Essex This book, winner of the National
Book Award for Nonfiction in 2000, chronicles the story of the wreck of the whaleship Essex, whose fate
inspired the climax of Moby Dick.
Rand, Ayn Atlas Shrugged The female protagonist fights to manage a transcontinental railroad.
Rostand, Edmond Cyrano de Bergerac A soldier, a wit, but a timid lover, woos by proxy of a more handsome
Sartre, Jean Paul No Exit In this existential play, hell is other people.
Shakespeare, William Henry IV, Part I Prince Hal carouses with his friend Falstaff.
Shaw, George Bernard Arms and the Man This farce criticizes Romanticism and embraces twentieth century
Shirer, William The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich WW II, the Holocaust, and the Nuremberg Trials are
Solzhenitsyn, Alexander One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich A typical day in the labor camp of Siberia
Sophocles Oedipus at Colonus Blamed for the curse upon him, Oedipus is exiled.
Stegner, Wallace Angle of Repose Wheelchair-bound Lyman writes about his grandparents whom he never
Steele, Shelly The Content of Our Character This look at the African-American experience argues for personal
Stoppard, Tom Rosencrantz and Guidenstern Are Dead Minor characters from Shakespeare’s Hamlet take on major
roles in this existential comedy.
Tan, Amy The Kitchen God’s Wife Winnie and her daughter Pearl have secrets that Auntie Helen wants to tell.
Tolstoy, Leo Anna Karenina Unhappy in her marriage, Anna develops a dangerous passion for Count Vronsky.
Voltaire Candide Candide believes that he lives in the “best of all possible worlds.”
Walker, Alice The Color Purple Celie struggles for empowerment against a life of abuse and lack of education.
Wangerin, Walter The Book of the Dun Cow An animal fable tells of courage, sorrow, humor, character, and
Warren, Robert Penn All the King's Men The life of Hughie Long, the governor of Louisiana, is fictionalized.
Wilde, Oscar The Picture of Dorian Gray A portrait hidden in the attic ages while Dorian himself does not.
Wilson, August Two Trains Running This play, set in a 60’s Pittsburgh diner, boldly confronts racism.
Woolfe, Virginia Mrs. Dalloway The feelings during a single day in the life of Mrs. Dalloway emerge.
Wouk, Herman The Caine Mutiny Mutiny aboard a World War II ship pits a maturing Keith against a fanatical
Wright, Steven Meditations in Green James survives Vietnam but not the effects of war
a note from a parent…
-Read “The Economist” magazine. During “elite” college interviews, this magazine & its contents often come up during the conversation.
-Anybody applying to MIT: read “Technology Review” & “Car & Driver.” The editor of the latter does MIT alumni interviews in Ann Arbor.
-”The Sea Around Us” by Rachel Carson. One of the most influential science books of the 20th century.
-”A Brief History of Time” by Stephen Hawking. Required reading for Freshman English at U of M; an essential 20-th century book!
-”The Double Helix” by James Watson. American good-off goes to England & figures out the structure of DNA & wins Nobel Prize.
-Read a few of Isabelle Allende’s books. She is probably the most outstanding & influential woman writer in the world. If you’re a Spanish student, read them in Spanish!
-Read books by Carlos Fuentes and Pablo Neruda. Read them in Spanish if you can, otherwise in English.
-The only 1990’s novel that has “Elan” is “The Phantom” by Susan Kay. Hard to come by, Amazon 5-star. I sell copies of this all over the world.
-Another tip: Go see the current exhibits at the UM Art Museum; watch the videos & read the exhibit brochures. It’s also important because U of M Freshman English requires students to write about a work at UM Art Museum. Get some experience with art before college.
ANOTHER Parent suggestion!
It is helpful to have a variety of lists. I was happy to see the titles on the Princeton Review list but would also like to add that there are many books that provide multiple perspectives on being in America and also some terrific historical fiction, biography, and memoirs that can expand our knowledge of others and also be fun to read! Anything by Milton Meltzer who writes nonfiction and historical fiction. I liked:
“Never to Forget: The Jews of the Holocaust” and “The American Revolution: A History in their Own Words 1750-1800”
“Empress of the Splendid Season” by Oscar Hijuelos
“When I Was Puerto Rican” by Esmeralda Santiago
“The House on Mango Street” by Sandra Cisneros (on the Princeton Review list?)
“The Color of Water” by James McBride (he is a jazz musician as well as a writer so may appeal to CHS jazz folks)
“American Chica” by Marie ARiana
“Postcards from No Man’s Land” by Adain Chambers (fiction that links present with WWII)
“Reason for Hope” by Jane Goodall.
“No Ordinary Time” (The book about Eleanor and Franklin Roosevelt during WWII by Doris Kearns)