Dear Soon-to-Be Fifth Graders

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Dear Soon-to-Be Fifth Graders,


I hope you all have a relaxing summer and look forward to meeting you in the fall.


For your summer project, you are to read two books and create a scrapbook, which is due the first week of school. Of course, I hope you will use the summer to read as many books as you can and not limit yourself to the required two books!


Research tells us that children who do not read during the summer may lose a month or more of the reading progress they have made in school. Therefore, it is imperative that you are engaged in summer reading activities. This is also a great opportunity to read aloud to your parents or have them read aloud to you and share your thoughts and reactions.


The completed project is due the first week of school. You will also be required to give a small presentation about one of your completed assignments.


Have a great summer and enjoy this opportunity to read great books.


Ms. Kim

Summer Reading Scrapbook Set-Up

Follow the directions carefully.

  1. Buy a composition notebook.

It should be like the one you use for reading and writing workshop. (Suggested) You may also create your own notebook by stapling 10+ pieces of loose-leaf paper together.

  1. Title your scrapbook.

“2016 Summer Reading”, “Summer Books”, “My Summer Reading”, or something like this.

  1. Design/decorate a special cover for your scrapbook.

PUT YOUR NAME ON THE FRONT. Examples: Drawing of events from your reading, interesting lettering of your titles, important objects from your reading, pictures of your characters, or pictures and information about the authors.

  1. Include a LIST on the FIRST page of your scrapbook.

  • List every title and author you read.

  • State the number of pages in each book.

  • Give each book a rating between one and ten (with ten being the best book you ever read).

  1. Choose any TWO activities from the Activity Choices list and complete them for EACH book of your choosing. (2 activities x 2 different books of your choosing = Total of 4 activities completed) Do not put more than one activity on a page. The book title and the activity number must be on the top of each related page. Be creative in your presentation of the activity on each page.

For a list of SUGGESTED books, please go to my classroom page at

Activity Choices

  1. Compose an essay in which you summarize the novel in paragraph one. In the second paragraph explain the author’s purpose/theme. In your concluding paragraph, give your opinion of the book. Let me know if you would you recommend this book to other fifth graders- why or why not.

  1. Pretend to be one of the main characters from your novel and write a diary entry from his/her point of view. Explain how this character is thinking/feeling about a pivotal event, major decision, etc. Reflect on what is happening as well as how the character may be changed.

  1. Plan a party for the characters in your book completing the following: design an invitation to the party which would appeal to the characters, describe what each of the guests would wear and why, tell what food you would serve and why, explain what games or entertainment you will provide and why, tell how three of the characters will act at the party, and explain the type of party you will have.  

  1. Favorite Quote – Write the quote and the page number where you found the quote and explain why you liked it.

  1. Design a T-shirt for one of the characters and explain why it represents that character.

  1. Write an acrostic poem using the letters of a character’s name to create a brief summary of the character.

  1. Find a picture that looks like one of your book’s settings. Paste the picture in the scrapbook and include a written description of the setting and why it’s important to the story.

  1. Write a letter to the author telling how the book changed your view on a topic.

  1. Write a recipe for how a character can cope/deal with a problem in the story. For example, your character might need a recipe for “surviving bullies.”

  1. Draw and color an entire page as a mural that includes a number of places, events, or things you visualized as you read.

  1. Make a Venn diagram that compares and contrasts one of your books to a book you have previously read. Both book titles are needed.

  1. Choose one character. Tell what he/she said, did, and thought, and what that taught you about the character. Add a picture, about the size of a postage stamp of this character.

  1. Design an advertisement about your book to convince a friend to read that book.

  1. Make a comic strip (4 boxes) and use speech bubbles to show the author’s main theme (message or lesson) from your story.

  1. Make a chart of LIKES and DISLIKES. List 3-5 things you like and 3-5 things you disliked about the plot, characters, author’s techniques, story ending, plot, twists, etc.

  1. Design a different cover for your book. Write a paragraph explaining your new cover.

  1. Choose 3 events in your book. Tell about the events by writing a paragraph from one character’s perspective.

  1. Create a glossary for 5 new words you did not know from y our book. Look up the definitions, write down the definitions, and a draw a picture for each word.

  1. Pretend you’re interviewing a character/person from the book. Write your interview in question and answer format. Interview a character. Compose 6-8 questions to ask the main character in the book. You must write the character’s response to each question.

  1. Write a letter to the author. Explain what you liked and disliked. Ask any questions that you have about the story or characters. Give the author feedback; tell them what you would have changed if you were the author. You should also mention at least one thing that you will always remember about this novel and why.


5th Grade SUGGESTED Summer Reading List

Among the Hidden by Margaret Peterson Haddix

Luke is one of the shadow children, a third-born child forbidden by the Population Police; he’s never known any other children—until he starts to discover others in hiding like himself—does he dare get involved with them? Can he afford not to take the risk? You’ll want to read all the books in this series!

Around the World in 100 Days by Gary Blackwood Start your engines! Join four young adventurers in a high-stakes race around the world, by automobile, in 1891—based on a real-life race that took place in 1908.
Because of Mr. Terupt by Rob Buyea

Brief chapters make this story move quickly about a “prank gone bad” and reveal the lives of the students behind the prank in the most unusual ways.

Belly-Up by Stuart Gibbs

Animal lovers will especially enjoy this mystery in the zoo, 12-year-old Teddy is on a mission to find out how the zoo’s favorite hippo wound up dead, looks like murder to him—there’s a whole cast of likely characters, mixed with much humor too.

Confetti Girl by Diana Lopez

A favorite book of many young readers--Colorful, funny, honest, get to know a sixth grader, Apolonia "Lina" Flores is a sock enthusiast, a volleyball player, a science lover, and a girl who's just looking for answers.

Crunch by Leslie Connor

Dewey Mariss’ small family bicycle-repair business is suddenly the center of action when the gas pumps run dry, and his parents are stranded far from home—it’s up to Dewey and his siblings to keep the shop and family going—and find out who is stealing valuable bike parts!

Flipped by Wendelin Van Draanen

Bryce and Julie have been neighbors in a love-hate friendship since the second grade; the chapters flip between the two characters and so do their views of the world as they truly get to know each other.

The Fighting Ground by Avi

Thirteen-year-old Jonathan goes off to fight in the Revolutionary War and discovers the real war is being fought within himself.

Helen Keller: The Story of My Life by Helen Keller

Left blind, deaf, and mute after an illness in infancy, Helen Keller overcame her disabilities with the help of Anne Sullivan, her teacher.

The Hoboken Chicken Emergency by Pinwater

When the butcher at Murphy Meat Market loses the order for the Bobowicz family’s Thanksgiving turkey, young Arthur brings home a chicken weighing 266 pounds, which cause a bizarre crisis in Hoboken, New Jersey.

Holes by Louis Sachar

Stanley Yelnats is sent to a correctional camp where he finds his first real friend, a treasure, and a new sense of self.

How to Eat Fried Worms by Thomas Rockwell

Two boys set out to prove that worms can make a delicious meal.

Island of the Blue Dolphins by Scott O’Dell

As a solitary survivor on a rocky island off the California coast, a young Indian girl spends eighteen years surviving through her enormous courage and self-reliance.

The Landry News by Andrew Clements

A fifth-grader starts a newspaper with an editorial that prompts her burnt-out classroom teacher to really begin teaching again, but he is later threatened with a disciplinary action as a result.

No Talking by Andrew Clements

The 5th graders of Laketon Elementary decide to have a contest of no talking.

Nothing’s Fair in Fifth Grade by Barthe DeClements

A fifth grade class, repelled by the overweight new student who has serious home problems, finally learns to accept her.

The Revealers by Doug Wilhelm

Parkland Middle School is nicknamed Darkland because no one in it does much to stop the bullying going on until three ordinary kids make something happen that changes everything—they are the “Revealers” and heroes of the story.

Savvy by Ingrid Law

The Beaumont family has a magical secret in this book for fantasy lovers—at the age of 13 each family member finds out their “savvy,” or special supernatural power. Mibs is about to discover her power when they get the news that her dad has been in a terrible accident—can she use her power to help him, can she get to him in time?

Sounder by William Howard Armstrong

Angry and humiliated when his sharecropper father is jailed for stealing food for his family, a young black boy grows in courage and understanding by learning to read and with the help of the devoted dog Sounder.

Superfudge by Judy Blume (or any in the Fudge series)

Peter describes the highs and lows of life with his younger brother Fudge.

Wonder by R.J. Palacio

August Pullman is not an ordinary ten-year-old kid. Sure, he's a huge Star Wars fan, he loves his dog, and he's got a pretty good sense of humor. But August was born with a craniofacial abnormality — a genetic defect that caused his facial features to be severely deformed. His life has never been "normal." Despite his differences, August and his parents decide to transition him from home school to private school now that he's entering fifth grade. It's the start of middle school, they reason, so everyone will be new. But August has to deal with so much more than just being new. Will he make friends? Will he decide to stay at the school? And can the people around him learn to see past his appearance?

Additional SUGGESTED Titles for Emerging Readers:
Bunnicula by James Howe

Harold the dog and Chester the cat must find out the truth about the newest pet in the Monroe household – a suspicious looking bunny with unusual habits and fangs!

The Chalk Box Kid by Clyde Robert Bulla

Nine-year-old Gregory’s house doesn’t have room for a garden, but he creates a surprising and very different garden in a an unusual place.

Flat Stanley by Jeff Brown

After a bulletin board falls on Stanley while he is sleeping, he finds that being flat has its advantages.

Make a Wish, Molly by Barbara Cohen

Molly, who recently emigrated with her family from Russia to New Jersey, learns about birthday parties and who her real friends are.

Magic Tree House series by Mary Pope Osborne
Ramona Series by Beverly Cleary

Summer Reading Project Rubric

Student Name: _______________________________________ Homeroom: ____________




Title/Cover: Your scrapbook has a title and a decorated cover that depicts the books you read.


LIST: The first page of your scrapbook has a list that includes every title and author you read, number of pages in each book, and ratings.


BOOK 1: You completed 2 activities for the book, fulfilling all requirements for the activities, showing creativity and understanding of the book.


BOOK 2: You completed 2 activities for the book, fulfilling all requirements for the activities, showing creativity and understanding of the book.



Grammar, Spelling, Punctuation are correct



Good Delivery, Eye Contact, Behavior


Score: ______________/100

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