By Nancy Whitney
In a flyer released by Ashley Day, McMillan Junior High ELAR teacher, all incoming eighth grade students at McMillan Junior High are required to read three to five books over the duration of the summer.
Curriculum for the 2015-’16 school year has been broken into six units for regular courses and five units for Springboard.
Units for regular courses include unit one, fiction and drama; unit two, literary non-fiction and poetry; unit three, informational text; unit four, connections across literary and informational text; unit five, connections across genres and unit six, producing research.
Units for Springboard include unit one, the challenge of heroism; unit two, real-life challenges; unit three, reflecting on challenges; unit four, voices and challenges; and unit five, the challenge of comedy.
Springboard students will need to read “The Giver” and “Cezanne is Missing” over the summer. “The Giver” will need to be annotated over the summer, making notes in the book about character, plot, setting, theme and figurative language.
Day said the units listed are directly derived from the district curriculum (Springboard and CSCOPE).
“The pre-AP summer reading is a part of our Springboard curriculum (unit one) which is district wide; however, some campuses might have different summer reading requirements,” said Day. “We like to start the school year ahead of the game, which is why we have made this a summer requirement instead of including it in the unit. By reading “The Giver” over the summer, it allows us to go deeper with our students through classroom assignments and discussions.”
Day said many of the districts secondary campuses participate in the “Forty Book Challenge”, which is what inspired McMillan and is what several of the eighth grade classrooms are designed around.
“Data shows that the more you practice reading, the better you become at reading which is why we encourage our students to read more,” she said. “What better way is there to motivate and engage our students than to give them free choice over what they read?”
For additional questions about ELAR at McMillan contact Ashley Day at 972-429-3000 ext. 6209 or email [email protected].