When Friendship Followed Me Home by Paul Griffin
The suggested summer reading for incoming sixth grade students is When Friendship Followed Me Home by Paul Griffin.
The public library has ordered multiple copies. It is not required that students purchase the book, but we strongly encourage that they read it. We will be holding a discussion on this book in English classes during the first few weeks of school and look forward to hearing each person's thoughts. It will be a fun, ungraded discussion on focused questions that tie to the specifics of the novel as well as ideas that tie to themes in the story and life.
The following synopsis of When Friendship Followed Me Home is from Amazon.
Ben Coffin has never been one for making friends. As a former foster kid, he knows people can up and leave without so much as a goodbye. Ben prefers to spend his time with the characters in his favorite sci-fi books…until he rescues an abandoned mutt from the alley next-door to the Coney Island Library. Scruffy little Flip leads Ben to befriend a fellow book-lover named Halley—yes, like the comet—a girl unlike anyone he has ever met. Ben begins thinking of her as “Rainbow Girl” because of her crazy-colored clothes and her laugh, pure magic, the kind that makes you smile away the stormiest day. Rainbow Girl convinces Ben to write a novel with her. But as their story unfolds Ben’s life begins to unravel, and Ben must discover for himself the truth about friendship and the meaning of home. Paul Griffin’s breathtaking middle-grade debut will warm your heart as much as it breaks it.
For those incoming 6th grade students you who really love to read, we also recommend Wolf Hollow by Lauren Wolk; Sticks and Stones by Abby Cooper or The Best Man by Richard Peck. Please go to Bedford Public Library website to find other suggestions for reading and activities.
Ellen Raskin’s The Westing Game
The 7th grade summer recommended reading book for this year is Ellen Raskin’s The Westing Game. Even though there is not a required summer reading program here at JGMS, we would like to encourage all of the incoming students to read this summer and enjoy taking time to read this book prior to the start of school. Copies of the book are at the Bedford Public Library, Barnes & Noble, and the Concord Book Shop. The 7th grade ELA teachers strongly encourage that each student take time to read The Westing Game prior to the first day of school as we will be holding book discussions on this book in English classes.
The following is a description of The Westing Game from Amazon.
A bizarre chain of events begins when sixteen unlikely people gather for the reading of Samuel W. Westing’s will. And though no one knows why the eccentric, game-loving millionaire has chosen a virtual stranger—and a possible murderer—to inherit his vast fortune, on things for sure: Sam Westing may be dead…but that won’t stop him from playing one last game!
- Winner of the Newbery Medal
- Winner of the Boston Globe/Horn Book Award
- An ALA Notable Book
Trouble by Gary Schmidt
Incoming 8th grade student to John Glenn Middle School in the fall of 2016 should read Gary Schmidt's book Trouble.
“Henry Smith’s father told him that if you build your house far enough away from Trouble, then Trouble will never find you.”
But Trouble comes careening down the road one night in the form of a pickup truck that strikes Henry’s older brother, Franklin. In the truck is Chay Chouan, a young Cambodian from Franklin’s preparatory school, and the accident sparks racial tensions in the school—and in the well-established town where Henry’s family has lived for generations. Caught between anger and grief, Henry sets out to do the only thing he can think of: climb Mt. Katahdin, the highest mountain in Maine, which he and Franklin were going to climb together. Along with Black Dog, whom Henry has rescued from drowning, and a friend, Henry leaves without his parents’ knowledge. The journey, both exhilarating and dangerous, turns into an odyssey of discovery about himself, his older sister, Louisa, his ancestry, and why one can never escape from Trouble.