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Summer Reading

Summer Reading


DePaul Catholic High School

The Journey of Self-Discovery: Summer Reading 2019


“Books are the carriers of civilization. Without books, history is silent, literature dumb, science crippled, thought and speculation at a standstill.”

Barbara Tuchman

Summer reading is a means to support and enrich reading skills and language development. Just as athletics, performance arts, and other endeavors require year-round physical fitness and skill development, academic fitness requires year-round attention to the practice of reading and the development of a rich background of experiences and knowledge. Reading develops increased comprehension skills and fluency with writing. Reading also improves SAT/ACT scores and chances for success in college. Student responsibility and active participation in one’s own education develops self-awareness and a moral compass. Our reading program allows students to explore classic and contemporary works that enhance their academic and social development on their journey of self-discovery.

Ben Jonson, a friend of William Shakespeare said that “he (Shakespeare) was not of an age but for all time.” We agree with this for several reasons.

Why do we still read Shakespeare?

  • Great stories.
  • Powerful and memorable characters.
  • His thirty-eight plays span numerous genres and discuss varied topics.
  • Shakespeare’s plays have been adapted into many versions and have been performed by countless companies in theaters and movies.
  • Shakespeare’s themes are universal and timeless.
  • Shakespeare’s plays are challenging and inspiring.

Students in each grade will read a Shakespeare play and watch the corresponding movie. All students must read the Folger Library edition of the play.

On the first full day of classes all students will be formally assessed on the reading of the play. This assessment will include character identification, multiple choice, true-false, and identifying the speaker.

On the second full day of classes all students will write a comparison/contrast essay based on the reading and the viewing of the movie.

These assessments will be 200 points each and will serve as the first two grades for first quarter.


8TH Grade Prep Students will not read Shakespeare but will read a novel and watch the corresponding movie.


Novel: The Lightning Thief (Percy Jackson and the Olympians Series #1) by Rick Riordan

Movie: Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightning Thief Director: Chris Columbus (2010) Starring Logan Lerman and Kevin McKidd.

Synopsis: Percy Jackson is a good kid, but he can’t seem to focus on his schoolwork or control his temper. And lately, being away at boarding school is only getting worse – Percy could have sworn his pre-algebra teacher turned into a monster and tried to kill him. When Percy’s mom finds out, she knows it’s time that he knew the truth about where he came from, and that he goes to the one place he’ll be safe. She sends Percy to Camp Half Blood, a summer camp for demigods, where he learns that the father he never knew is Poseidon, god of the sea. Soon, a mystery unfolds and together with his friends – one a satyr and the other the demigod daughter of Athena – Percy sets out on a quest across the United States to reach the gates of the Underworld and prevent a catastrophic war between the gods.




ALL Grade 9 students will read:

“For never was a story of more woe than this of Juliet and her Romeo.”

Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare (Folger Edition)

ALL Grade 9 students will watch:

Romeo and Juliet Director: Franco Zefferelli ( 1968 ) Starring Leonard Whiting and Olivia Hussey.

Synopsis: In Romeo and Juliet, Shakespeare creates a violent world, in which two young people fall in love. It is not simply that their families disapprove: the Montagues and the Capulets are engaged in a blood feud. In this death-filled setting, the movement from love at first sight to the lovers’ final union in death seems almost inevitable. The play is set in an extraordinary world that has become the quintessential story of young love.


 ALL Grade 10 students will read:

“If I be waspish, best beware my sting.”

The Taming of the Shrew by William Shakespeare (Folger Edition)

ALL Grade 10 students will watch:

10 Things I Hate About You Director: Gil Junger (1999) Starring Heath Ledger and Julia Stiles.

Synopsis: Love and marriage are the concerns of Shakespeare’s The Taming of the Shrew. Lucentio’s marriage to Bianca is prompted by his idealized love of an apparently ideal woman. Petruchio’s wooing of Katherine, however, is free of idealism. Petruchio takes money from Bianca’s suitors to woo her, since Katherine must marry before her sister by her father’s decree; he also arranges the dowry with her father. Petruchio is then ready to marry Katherine, even against her will.


ALL Grade 11 students will read:

“Lord, what fools these mortals be.”

A Midsummer Night’s Dream by William Shakespeare (Folger Edition)

ALL Grade 11 students will watch:

A Midsummer Night’s Dream Director Michael Hoffman ( 1999 ) Starring Kevin Kline and Michelle Pfeiffer.

Synopsis: In A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Shakespeare stages the workings of love. Theseus and Hippolyta, about to marry, are figures from mythology. In the woods outside Theseus’s Athens, two young men and two young women sort themselves out into couples – but not before they form first one love triangle, and then another. Also, in the woods, the king and queen of fairyland, Oberon and Titania, battle over custody of an orphan boy; Oberon uses magic to make Titania fall in love with a weaver named Bottom, whose head is temporarily transformed into that of a donkey by a hobgoblin or “puck,” Robin Goodfellow. Finally, Bottom and his companions ineptly stage the tragedy of “Pyramus and Thisbe.”


 ALL Grade 12 students will read:

“Some are born great, others achieve greatness.”

Twelfth Night by William Shakespeare (Folger Edition)

ALL Grade 12 students will watch:

She’s the Man Director: Andy Fickman ( 2006 ) Starring Amanda Bynes and Channing Tatum

Synopsis: Named for the twelfth night after Christmas, the end of the Christmas season, Twelfth Night plays with love and power. The Countess Olivia, a woman with her own household, attracts Duke (or Count) Orsino. Two other would-be suitors are her pretentious steward, Malvolio, and Sir Andrew Aguecheek. Onto this scene arrive the twins Viola and Sebastian; caught in a shipwreck, each thinks the other has drowned. Viola disguises herself as a male page and enters Orsino’s service. Orsino sends her as his envoy to Olivia – only to have Olivia fall in love with the messenger.

The DePaul Catholic Summer Reading Books are now available at 4 different Barnes and Noble locations in our area:


B&N Clifton Commons


B&N Shops at Riverside 


B&N Woodland Park


B&N Paramus, Rte. 17 South


These B&N locations have a dedicated Table of DePaul Catholic Summer Reading Books.


Take advantage of this great opportunity to get an early start on your Summer Reading.