The Triton Regional Middle School in partnership with students, families, and the community is committed to the development of independent learners who respect differences and value academic excellence. A highly qualified staff nurtures intellectual, social, emotional, and physical growth in the pursuit of developing responsible citizens and lifelong learners.

Important Middle School Information

Dear Students and Families:

It is with great anticipation that I write this letter to you.  I have spent the end of my school year meeting with teachers, parents and other administrators in preparation for our upcoming school year.  The common thread of all my conversations continues to be the high quality of the teachers/staff and the capabilities and potential of the students.  As a principal, I will challenge your capabilities and accept nothing less than you reaching your fullest potential.  Likewise, I will challenge the teachers to continue their growth as professionals, and to find ways to increase the achievement of the students.  Three key factors will assist you in being successful.

1.Come to school everyday ready to learn.

2.Work to the best of your ability.

3.Treat everyone with respect.

To help you prepare for school please keep in the mind the following information:

Opening Day –Tuesday September 5th


Students should proceed to their homerooms (see below) by 7:40.  Faculty and staff members will be on hand to answer any questions and to point you in the right direction.

Lunch– Lunch times are 10:35-11:00 or 11:02-11:25

You may bring your own or purchase a lunch for $2.75.  A monthly menu will be posted on the school’s website.

Teams and Homerooms–   The Homeroom and Team Assignments are NOW available in the ASPEN portal.  If you have trouble with your ASPEN account please go to: http://www.tritonschools.org/students-parents/aspen-help/

Class Schedules– Class schedules are not available in ASPEN at this time and will be handed out in homeroom by your teacher.   Your teachers will help explain the times and rotation.  Class assignments were created to meet both student’s individual needs as well as to keep classes balanced for size, gender, etc.

Team Supply Lists- Each Team Suggested Supply List can be found on the TRSD website under the middle school at: http://www.tritonschools.org/middle/#tab-id-4

Bus Information– Bus routes and time schedules are published in the Newburyport Daily News towards the mid to of August.  The lists will also be posted on the Triton Website at: http://www.tritonschools.org/transportation/

Reminder:  There will be no late busses this year. 

7th graders please keep in mind the time change!  If you cannot find your route, or if you have any questions regarding bussing please call (978)-462-0820.

I look forward to seeing you all on Tuesday, September 5th.  Enjoy the rest of your summer!


Alan. MacRae


Homeroom Placements & Team Listings
 Team & Homeroom Placements are now open in the ASPEN Portal.  Schedules are given out in homeroom on the first day of school.  If you are having difficulties with your ASPEN account please go to: http://www.tritonschools.org/students-parents/aspen-help/

Please see below for the Core Team Teachers and their respective Homeroom Numbers:

Team  7-2

Homeroom M201 Maryann Gearin, English

Homeroom M202 T.J. Anderson, Social Studies

Homeroom M203 Melissa Buganski, Foreign Language for (7th & 8th) Homeroom for 7-2

Homeroom M204 Leslie Randall, Science

Homeroom M207 Lee Viola, Math

Team  7-3

Homeroom M300 Patrick Canny, Science 

Homeroom M301 Melanie Babendreier, English

Homeroom M303 Jan Tosi, Social Studies

Homeroom M307 Mark Wilson, Math

Homeroom M308 Rebecca Kelley, Foreign Language (7th & 8th) Homeroom for 7-3

Team  8-2

Homeroom M223 Tim Connell, Social Studies

Homeroom M225 Douglas Dunbar, Foreign Language ( 7th 7 8th) Homeroom for 8-2

Homeroom M226 Gillian Beckwith, Science

Homeroom M228 Jennifer Jansen, English 

Homeroom M229 Addison Conway, Math

Team  8-3

Homeroom M320 Paige Ribaudo-Smith, Science

Homeroom M321 Emily Gulick, Reading Specialist (7th & 8th) Homeroom for Team 8-3

Homeroom M325 James Gonsalves, Math

Homeroom M327 Lisa Breton, English 

Homeroom M326 Ryan McAdams, Social Studies

Student Supply Lists by Team

Team 7-2 Supplies


a sturdy, single-subject, spiral-bound notebook

1 1/2″ binder

three section dividers

Loose-leaf paper

blue/black pens



1 ½ “ binder

Loose-leaf paper

12 pencils (replenish as needed)

Scientific calculator

3 section dividers

Red pens


9.75 x 7.5, 100 sheet Composition Book

1 ½ “ binder (shared with Social Studies)

Loose-leaf paper


1 divider

Social Studies:

4 dividers

Colored pencils

Team 7-3 Supplies

  • 5 colored 1” notebooks – Green, Blue, Yellow, Red, Black ( if possible)
  • *Loose leaf paper – not spiral
  • Composition journal book (Marble) for English
  • 2 packages of five Section Dividers
  • T130 Calculator
  • *Pencils – Ticonderoga
  • *Eraser tops
  • Good hand held pencil sharpener
  • Pouches for pencils and other items
  • *Index cards
  • *Box of Kleenex
  • 2 large Book Covers or 2 paper bags to cover Math and SS books

Also suggested:

  • Colored pencils
  • Glue stick
  • Highlighters

* Will need to be replenished periodically

                                                    Team 8-2 & Team 8-3 Supplies


    • 4 colored 1½” binders – green, blue, red, black ( if possible)
    • PENCILS —
    • Loose leaf paper – not spiral
    • 2 packages of five section dividers
  • TI30 or similar scientific, non graphing calculator
  • Pencils – no. 2 (will need to replenish throughout the year)
  • Eraser tops
  • Good hand held pencil sharpener
  • Pouches for pencils and other items
  • Index cards
  • Box of Kleenex – donate to homeroom at beginning of school year
  • 3 large Book Covers or 3 paper bags to cover Math, SS, and Science books (Stretchy covers not allowed- they ruin the binding of the books.)
  • Lined paper for binders

Also suggested:

  • Colored pencils
  • Glue stick
  • Highlighters


The office does not reset or create ASPEN accounts and passwords.  If you are having any difficulties with your account please go to the following link: http://www.tritonschools.org/students-parents/aspen-help/

New Student Registrations
Open Registration for new students will be on August 23rd and 24th from 8:30 am-3:00 pm. Please call the main office at 978-463-5845 to schedule an appointment.
7th Grade Summer Reading

Welcome to Middle School English!  Triton 7th Grade English/Language Arts teachers, Mrs. Gearin and Mrs. Babendreier, believe that reading is one of the most important life skills. Studies have shown that a student who reads only twenty minutes a day, or 3,600 minutes a school year (which adds up to almost two million words a year), score in the 90th percentile on standardized tests. Students who don’t read, score in the 10th percentile. (Nacy and Herman).

This summer, we would like you to read two books.  First, please read the amazing novel Wonder, by R.J. Palacio, and complete a project from the list below.  

  • An Auggie doll (or a doll representing any of the main characters in Wonder)
  • A poster of one of the precepts in Wonder, with a paragraph on the back of the poster explaining the personal relevance and importance of the chosen precept to you.
  • A Diary/Blog:  Pretend you are one of the secondary characters (Such as Vi, Will, or Julian) of the book, and write at least five entries of at least 100 words each.  Include major events from the book and your chosen character’s emotional reactions. Date the entries in a way that makes sense (seasons, time, etc.). You may handwrite or type your entries and bind them into a little book, or buy a small journal or notebook to write them in.
  • Bumper Stickers:  Design five bumper stickers based on themes from the novel, using significant quotes or universal themes from the book itself. Illustrate the bumper stickers with an appropriate design or image.

On a separate piece of paper, write one or two sentences to explain the significance of each bumper sticker to the story and/or your life.

  • Letters:  Write three letters to and from any characters in the novel. Each letter should cover a full side of paper, and can be hand-written, if neat. The details of the letter must be directly from the novel and show the distinct point-of-view of the letter writers.

Letters must be in envelopes with creative addresses and pretend stamps.  Use actual stationery if you can.   Tie the three letters together with a ribbon or piece of string.

  • Create a painting or illustration of an important scene from the book.  Frame it with posterboard or a mat. On the back, write a paragraph explaining the scene and its significance to you.

(Please take time to review the rubric on the last page.)  

You may choose any book you like for your second book, as long as it’s appropriate for your age and reading-level.  We have provided a list of suggestions below in case you need recommendations:

Orbiting Jupiter, by Gary D. Schmidt (Mrs. Babendreier LOVED this book – it’s very sad, though)

Noggin, by John Corey Whaley

Crossover, by Kwame Alexander (Free verse about boy’s basketball,in Rap)

We Were Liars, by  E. Lockhart

Boost, by Kathy Mackel

All Fall Down, by Ally Carter

Counting by Sevens, by Holly Goldberg Sloan

Into Thin Air, by Jon Krakauer

The War that Saved My Life, by Kimberly Brubaker Bradley (2016 Newberry Honor Book)

Wolf Hollow, by Lauren Wolk (2016 Newberry Honor Medal!)

Fallen Angels, by Walter Dean Myers

The Fifth Wave, by Rick Yancey

The Gone Series, by Michael Grant

The Maze Runner series, by James Dashner

Divergent series, by Veronica Roth

Small As an Elephant, by Jennifer Richard Jacobson

I Am Number Four series, by Pittacus Lore

Unbroken, by Laura Hillenbrand

If you loved Wonder:

Raymie Nightingale, by Kate DiCamillo (Brand new in April- Another of Mrs. Babendreier’s favorites!)

Out of My Mind, by Sharon Draper

Anything But Typical, by Nora Raleigh Baskin

Fish In a Tree, by Linda Mullaly Hunt

Bluefish, by Pat Schmatz

Drama, by Raina Telgemeier

Smile, by Raina Telgemeier

Heartbeat, by Sharon Creech


If you would like more information on any of these books, a good resource is Amazon, where you can read a summary of the book as well as multiple reviews.  You might also find the link www.goodreads.com helpful.

Submit this scoring rubric with your project  in September. Use a colored pencil or pen to score yourself.  Be honest.

Name:_________________________________    Date_____________ Period:____________  

Project: Exceeds Expectations Meets Expectations Progressing Towards Needs Improvement
    Criteria One:

    Follows Directions

    Followed directions to

    complete each  


A     A- B+   B    B- C+   C    C-     D+     D     D-
    Criteria Two:



    Comprehension of central

    ideas and themes of book

A     A- B+   B    B-  

C+    C    C-

    D+      D      D-
    Criteria Three:  


    Neat and complete?

A     A- B+   B    B- C+   C    C-      D+     D      D-
     Criteria Four:

     Evidence of Effort:

     Project shows obvious        

     Care and time spent  

A     A- B+   B    B- C+   C   C-     

    D+      D       D-

8th Grade Summer Reading

    Triton Regional Middle School

       English/Language Arts Department                                                   

      Summer Reading 2017

Grade 8

Why Read Over the Summer?

Children who read will do better in other subjects and in all aspects of schooling and beyond.  As the world becomes increasingly complex, reading is increasingly important for children trying to find their place in it.” – Francine Alexander

The Journey of a lifetime starts with the turning of a page.” Rachel Anders

Books are the quietest and most constant of friends; they are the most accessible and wisest of counselors, and the most patient of teachers.” – Charles Eliot

The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you’ll go.” – Dr. Seuss

What are my responsibilities?

Each student will read 2 books for summer reading, one required book and a second choice book, from a pre-approved book list.  The 7th grade English teachers and/or your local librarians can help you to make a selection.

Required choice: Fever, 1793, by Laurie Halse Anderson

Book of your choice: See provided suggestions on pre-approved book list.

***  The summer reading assignments will  be scored as an assessment grade

            at the start of the 8th Grade English/Language Arts class.  ***

Parents and Guardians

The Triton Middle School English/Language Arts Department strongly recommends that you assist your child in selecting a book that is appropriate for him/her.

“Children who report that their parents encourage them to read are more likely to read a high volume of  books (65% read more than 10 per year).”- www.readingmatters.org

         A copy of the suggested book list will be given to your child to bring home along with the assignment by the end of the school year. The assignment will also be available on the Triton website.


Please choose ONE option for EACH of the books you have read. *Please make sure that you have included all the requirements of the assignment (see bold print) to earn full credit.

** You must choose  

  • Cartoon: In a minimum of 6 frames, illustrate a scene or chapter from the novel. Label each  scene/character that is illustrated. Make sure each is clearly distinguishable. You may also choose to illustrate the climax, or ending of the story, for example. In addition, write a  paragraph explaining your illustrations/events.
  1.  Write a letter to a character in the book, addressing their actions, choices and/or behavior, and discuss how you felt about their choices/actions.

           Your letter should be 200+ words. Must be in standard letter format, and free of

           grammatical errors.

  1.       Alternate Ending: Rewrite the last chapter/ending of your book, or add an ending that tells the “rest of the story,” if it ended with a cliffhanger. The alternate ending must be 200+ words, typed or in pen, and included a separate short paragraph explaining how your ending is different from the original ending and why you changed it.


  1.        Complete a graphic organizer on your novel. Include: characters, setting, major events, the climax of the story, and a conflict in the story. Briefly describe each element.

         Suggested 8th Grade Summer Reading List: 40 TITLES TO CHECK OUT!!

* This list is meant as a guide to aid you in choosing a second title. You are welcome to   

 choose a book of on your own alternatively. Check out these links for more titles….



  1. The Outsiders, by S.E. Hinton. Fiction

        The Outsiders is about two weeks in the life of a 14-year-old boy. Ponyboy and his two brothers — Darrel (Darry), who is 20, and Sodapop, who is 16 — have recently lost their parents in an automobile accident. Pony and Soda are allowed to stay under Darry’s guardianship as long as they all behave themselves. The boys are greasers, a class term that refers to the young men on the East Side, the poor side of town. The greasers’ rivals are the Socs, short for Socials, who are the “West-side rich kids.”

  1. Divergent, by Veronica Roth Science -Fiction

           A post-apocalyptic version of Chicago, then novel follows Beatrice “Tris” Prior as she explores her identity within a society that defines its citizens by their social and personality-related affiliation with five factions, which removes the threat of anyone exercising independent will and re-threatening the population’s safety. Underlying the action and dystopian focused main plot is a romantic subplot between Tris and one of her instructors in the dauntless faction, nicknamed Four.

  1. Code Talker, by Joseph Bruchac  Historical Fiction

         Throughout World War II, in the conflict fought against Japan, Navajo code talkers were a crucial part of the U.S. effort, sending messages back and forth in an unbreakable code that used their native language. They braved some of the heaviest fighting of the war, and with their code, they saved countless American lives yet their story remained classified for more than twenty years.  Joseph Bruchac brings their stories to life for young adults through the riveting fictional tale of Ned Begay,  a sixteen-year-old Navajo boy who becomes a code talker. His grueling journey is eye-opening and inspiring.

  1. Uglies, by Scott Westerfield  Science Fiction

          Uglies is set in a world in which everyone has an operation when they turn sixteen, making them supermodel beautiful. Big eyes, full lips, no one fat or skinny. You might think this is a good thing, but it’s not. Especially if  you’re one of the Smokies, a bunch of radical teens who’ve decided they want to keep their own faces.

  1. Saint Anything/The Moon and More, by Sarah Dessen  Fiction

     Sydney’s handsome, charismatic older brother, Peyton, has always dominated the family, demanding and receiving the lion’s share of their parents’ attention. And when Peyton’s involvement in a drunk driving episode sends him to jail, Sydney feels increasingly rootless and invisible, worried that her parents are unconcerned about the real victim: the boy Peyton hit and seriously injured. Meanwhile, Sydney becomes friends with the Chathams, a warm, close-knit, eccentric family, and their friendship helps her understand that she is not responsible for Peyton’s mistakes.

  1.   Matched, by Ally Condie  Science Fiction

          Cassia has always trusted the Society to make the right choices for her: what to read, what to watch, what to believe. So when Xander’s face appears on-screen at her Matching ceremony, Cassia knows he is her ideal mate.. until she sees Ky Markham’s face flash for an instant before the screen fades to black. The Society tells her it’s a glitch, a rare malfunction, and that she should focus on the happy life she’s destined to lead with Xander. But Cassia can’t stop thinking about Ky, and as they slowly fall in love, Cassia begins to doubt the Society’s infallibility and is faced with an impossible choice: between Xander and Ky, between the only life she’s known and a path that no one else has dared to follow.

  1. Ender’s Game, by Scott Orson Card    Science Fiction

          Set in Earth’s future, the novel presents an imperiled mankind after two conflicts with the “buggers“, an insectoid alien species. In preparation for an anticipated third invasion, children, including the novel’s protagonist, Ender Wiggin, are trained from a very young age through increasingly difficult games including some in zero gravity, where Ender’s tactical genius is revealed.

  1. The Secret Life of Bees, by Sue Monk Kidd   Fiction

          Set in Sylvan, South Carolina, in 1964, The Secret Life of Bees tells the story of a 14-year-old white girl, Lily Melissa Owens, whose life has been shaped around the blurred memory of the afternoon her mother was killed. She lives in a house with her abusive father, whom she refers to as T. Ray. They have a no-nonsense maid, Rosaleen, who acts as a surrogate mother for Lily.

  1. The Giver series —Gathering Blue, The Messenger, Son, by Lois Lowry  Science Fiction

Dystopian society…As she did in The Giver, Lowry challenges readers to imagine what our world could become, and what will be considered valuable.


  1. Tuesdays with Morrie, by Mitch Albom  Non-fiction/autobiographical

         Maybe it was a grandparent, or a teacher, or a colleague. Someone older, patient and wise, who understood you when you were young and searching, helped you see the world as a more profound place, gave you sound advice to help you make your way through it.  For Mitch Albom, that person was Morrie Schwartz, his college professor from nearly twenty years ago.

  1. Taken, the trilogy, by Erin Bowman   Science Fiction

         There are no men in Claysoot. There are boys -but every one vanishes at midnight on his eighteenth birthday.  The ground shakes, the wind howls, a blinding light descends…and he is gone. They call it the Heist. Gray Weathersby’s eighteenth birthday is mere months away, and he’s prepared to meet his fate–until he finds a strange note from his mother and starts to question everything he’s been raised to accept: the Council leaders and their obvious secrets. The Heist itself. And what lies beyond the Wall that surrounds Claysoot–a structure that no one can cross and survive.

  1. Gone, by Michael Grant  Science Fiction

        In the blink of an eye, everyone disappears. Gone. Except for the young. There are teens, but not one single adult.  Just as suddenly, there are no phones, no internet, no television. No way to get help. And no way to figure out what’s happened. Hunger threatens. Bullies rule. A sinister creature lurks. Animals are mutating. And the teens themselves are changing, developing new talents—unimaginable, dangerous, deadly powers—that grow stronger by the day. It’s a terrifying new world. Sides are being chosen, a fight is shaping up. Townies against rich kids. Bullies against the weak. Powerful against powerless. And time is running out: on your birthday, you      disappear just like everyone else. . .

  1. Maze Runner series, by James Dashner  Science Fiction

       Describes the story of a number of teenagers, who call themselves “The Gladers” left in a strange place which they call “The Glade”. Beyond the walls of the glade lie the ever changing maze, with its horrifying creatures which the Gladers call Grievers. Every month a newcomer joins the Gladers, sent by a lift with all past memories (except language and other common things) wiped out. The ultimate goal of the remaining Gladers is to find a way out of the         glade.The enormous walls of the maze change every day. When Thomas, an extra curious newcomer, arrives at the Glade and ventures into the maze, unusual things begin to happen.

  1. The Fault in our Stars, by John Green  Fiction

          Despite the tumor-shrinking medical miracle that has bought her a few years, Hazel has never been anything but terminal, her final chapter inscribed upon diagnosis. But when a gorgeous plot twist named Augustus Waters suddenly appears at Cancer Kid Support Group, Hazel’s story is about to be completely rewritten.

  1. Paper Towns, by John Green    Fiction

         Quentin Jacobsen has spent a lifetime loving the magnificently adventurous Margo Roth Spiegelman from afar. So when she cracks open a window and climbs back into his life–dressed like a ninja and summoning him for an ingenious campaign of revenge–he follows.

  1. Deep Blue (trilogy), by Jennifer Donnelly   Fiction

         Deep in the ocean, in a world not so different from our own, live the merpeople.  Their communities are spread

            throughout the oceans, seas, and freshwaters all over the globe.  When Serafina, a mermaid of the Mediterranean Sea, awakens on the morning of her betrothal, her biggest worry should be winning the love of handsome Prince Mahdi. And yet Sera finds herself haunted by strange dreams that foretell the return of an ancient evil.  Her dark  premonitions are confirmed when an assassin’s arrow poisons Sera’s mother.

  1. The Candy Makers, Wendy Mass  Fiction

          Four children have been chosen to compete in a national competition to find the tastiest confection in the country. Who will invent a candy more delicious than the Oozing Crunchorama or the Neon Lightning Chew?


  1. Red Queen, by Victoria Aveyard  Science Fiction

        Seventeen year-old Mare, a common girl whose once-latent magical power draws her into the dangerous  intrigue of the king’s palace. Will her power save her or condemn her?  Mare Barrow’s world is divided by blood—those with common, Red blood serve the Silver- blooded elite, who are gifted with superhuman abilities.  Mare is a Red, scraping by as a thief in a poor, rural village, until a twist of fate throws her in front of the Silver court.  Before the king, princes, and all the nobles, she discovers she has an ability of her own.

  1. Deadline, by Chris Crutcher  Fiction

           The story follows 18-year-old Ben Wolf who has been diagnosed with a rare, incurable blood disease. Instead of receiving treatment Ben decides to pack a lifetime of living in one year. Ben Wolf has big things planned for his senior year. Had big things planned. Now what he has is some very bad news and only one year left to make his mark on the world.   First, Ben makes sure that no one else knows what is going on—not his superstar quarterback brother, Cody, not his parents, not his coach, no one. Next, he decides to become the best 123-pound football player Trout High has ever seen; to give his close-minded civics teacher a daily migraine; and to help the local drunk clean up his act.

  1.  Hatchet, by Gary Paulsen   Fiction

            Thirteen-year-old Brian Robeson is on his way to visit his father when the single-engine plane in which he is flying crashes. Suddenly, Brian finds himself alone in the Canadian wilderness with nothing but a tattered  Windbreaker and the hatchet his mother gave him as a present—and the dreadful secret that has been tearing him apart since his parent’s divorce. But now Brian has no time for anger, self pity, or despair—it will take all his know-how and determination, and more courage than he knew he possessed, to survive.

  1.  The Heroes of Olympus series, by Rick Riordan   Fantasy

            The Heroes of Olympus is centered around a prophecy, introduced in The Last Olympian (last book in the Percy Jackson & the Olympians book series), that predicted seven demigods would unite to protect the earth from Gaea, the goddess of the Earth, before she wakes up. Gaea, on the other hand, is planning to destroy it.  Demigods from both the Greek camp, Camp Half-Blood, and a newfound Roman camp, Camp Jupiter, work together to save the world from being destroyed by Gaea.

  1. Life as We Knew It, by Susan Beth Pfeffer   Fiction

           High school sophomore Miranda’s disbelief turns to fear in a split second when an asteroid knocks the moon closer to Earth, like “one marble hits another.” The result is catastrophic. How can her family prepare for the future when worldwide tsunamis are wiping out the coasts, earthquakes are rocking the continents, and volcanic ash is blocking out the sun? As August turns dark and wintery in northeastern Pennsylvania, Miranda,  her two brothers, and their  mother retreat to the unexpected safe haven of their sunroom, where they subsist on  stockpiled food and limited water in the warmth of a wood-burning stove. Told in a year’s worth of journal         entries, this heart-pounding story chronicles Miranda’s struggle to hold on to the most important resource of  all—hope—in an increasingly desperate and unfamiliar world.

  1. Almost Home, by Joan Bauer     Fiction

           When twelve-year-old Sugar’s grandfather dies and her gambling father takes off yet again, Sugar and her mother lose their home in Missouri. They head to Chicago for a fresh start, only to discover that fresh starts  aren’t so easy to come by for the homeless. Nevertheless, Sugar’s mother has taught her to be grateful no matter what, so Sugar does her best. With the help of a rescue dog, Shush, a foster family, a supportive teacher, a love of poetry, and her own grace and good humor, Sugar comes to understand that while she can’t control  the hand life deals her, she can control how she responds.

  1. Chains, by Laurie Halse Anderson  Historical Fiction

            A  historical novel that follows the story of thirteen-year-old Isabel, an African-American slave fighting for her and her younger sister’s freedom while the Revolutionary War is occurring. The story sets in New York  in the years 1776 to 1777, when slavery was something that was legal and common in the colonies.  Though the novel is fictional, the events in the story are actual events that occurred back then in the colonies.

  1. See You at Harry’s, by Jo Knowles  Fiction

            Her dad is preoccupied with the family restaurant. Her mom is constantly going off to meditate. And then there’s Charlie: the ‘surprise’ baby, and the centre of everything. But when their lives are suddenly turned upside down, Fern feels responsible for the devastating event that wrenches the family apart. Things will never be the same, but can Fern do anything to make them better?

  1. Football Hero, by Tim Green  Fiction

Ty Lewis can’t believe it when Coach V recruits him for the football team. This is Ty’s big chance to prove how fast he is on the field, to get a fresh start in a new school, and to be like his older brother, Thane “Tiger” Lewis, who’s about to graduate from college –and is being recruited by the NFL. But Ty’s guardian, Uncle Gus, won’t  let him play…he needs Ty to scrub floors and toilets for his cleaning business while he cooks up gambling  schemes with “Lucy” the local mob boss.


  1. The Book Thief, by Markus Zusak   Historical Fiction

              Liesel Meminger, a nine-year-old girl living in Germany during World War II, arrives in a distraught state at the home of her new foster parents, after her brother’s death.  During her time there, she is exposed to the horror of the Nazi regime and struggles to find a way to preserve the innocence of her childhood in the midst of her destructive surroundings. As the political situation in Germany deteriorates, her foster parents hide a Jewish man named Max, putting the family in danger. Hans, who has developed a close relationship with Liesel,  teaches her to read in secret. Recognizing the power of writing and sharing the written word, Liesel begins to not only steal books the Nazi party is looking to destroy, but also write her own stories and share the power of    language with Max. As Liesel copes with the trauma of her past and the violent horrors of the war-torn world around her, she embarks on a journey of self-discovery, the formation of a new family, and mostly, her life as a  book thief.  The novel is narrated by Death, who describes the beauty and destruction of life in this era.

  1.   Life of Pi, by Yann Martel   Fantasy

        Yann Martel’s Life of Pi is the story of a young man who survives a harrowing shipwreck and months in a lifeboat with a large Bengal tiger named Richard Parker.


  1.  If I Stay, by Gayle Forman   Fiction

         In the blink of an eye everything changes. Seventeen ­year-old Mia has no memory of the accident; she can only recall what happened afterwards, watching her own damaged body being taken from the wreck. Little by little she struggles to put together the pieces- to figure out what she has lost, what she has left, and the very difficult choice she must make. Heart wrenchingly beautiful, Mia’s story will stay with you for a long, long time.

  1. Clockwork Angel, by Cassandra Clare   Science Fiction

        Magic is dangerous–but love is more dangerous still.  When sixteen-year-old Tessa Gray crosses the ocean to find her brother, her destination is England, the time is the reign of Queen Victoria, and something terrifying is  waiting for her in London’s Downworld, where vampires, warlocks and other supernatural folk stalk the gaslit streets. Only the Shadowhunters keep order amidst the chaos.

  1. 33 Minutes, by Todd Hasak-Lowy   Fiction

       Sam Lewis is going to get his butt kicked in exactly thirty-three minutes. He knows this because yesterday his former best friend Morgan Sturtz told him, to his face and with three witnesses nearby, “I am totally going to kick  your butt tomorrow at recess.”  All that’s standing between Sam and this unfortunate butt-kicking is the last few minutes of social studies and his lunch period. But how did Sam and Morgan end up here? How did this happen  just a few months after TAMAD (The Absolutely Most Amazing Day Ever), when they became the greatest video        game team in the history of great Alien Wars teams? And once the clock ticks down, will Morgan actually act on his threat?

  1. Hoot, by Carl Hiaasen   Fiction

         Roy Eberhardt is the new kid–again. This time around it’s Trace Middle School in humid Coconut Grove, Florida. But it’s still the same old routine: table by himself at lunch, no real friends, and thick-headed bullies like Dana  Matherson pushing him around. But if it wasn’t for Dana Matherson mashing his face against the school bus window that one day, he might never have seen the tow-headed running boy. And if he had never seen the running boy, he might never have met tall, tough, bully-beating Beatrice. And if he had never met Beatrice, he  might never have discovered the burrowing owls living in the lot on the corner of East Oriole Avenue. And if he had never discovered the owls, he probably would have missed out on the adventure of a lifetime. Apparently, bullies do serve a greater purpose in the scope of the universe.

  1. The Glass Castle, by Jeannette Walls  Non-fiction/autobiographical

         Rex and Rose Mary Walls had four children. In the beginning, they lived like nomads, moving among Southwest  desert towns, camping in the mountains. Rex was a charismatic, brilliant man who, when sober, captured his  children’s imagination, teaching them physics, geology, and above all, how to embrace life fearlessly. Rose Mary,  who painted and wrote and couldn’t stand the responsibility of providing for her family, called herself and “excitement addict.” Cooking a meal that would be consumed in fifteen minutes had no appeal when she could  make a painting that might last forever.  As the dysfunction of the family escalated, Jeannette and her brother and sisters had to fend for themselves, supporting one another as they weathered their parents’ betrayals and, finally, found the resources and will to leave home.

  1. Out of My Mind, by Sharon M. Draper   Fiction

         Eleven-year-old Melody has a photographic memory. Her head is like a video camera that is always recording.  Always. And there’s no delete button. She’s the smartest kid in her whole school-but NO ONE knows it.  Most people-her teachers and doctors included-don’t think she’s capable of learning, and up until recently her school days consisted of listening to the same preschool-level alphabet lessons again and again and again. If only she could speak up, if only she could tell people what she thinks and knows. But she can’t. She can’t talk.  She can’t walk. She can’t write. Being stuck inside her head is making Melody go out of her mind-that is, until  she discovers something that will allow her to speak for the first time ever. At last Melody has a voice . . . but not everyone around her is ready to hear it.

  1. Between the Lines, by Jody Piccoult  Fiction

         Between the Lines was Sammy’s idea, and frankly, she’s got a better imagination than I ever did at her age. It’s called Between the Lines, and it’s about what happens when happily ever after…isn’t. Delilah, a loner hates  school as much as she loves books—one book in particular. In fact if anyone knew how many times she has  read and reread the sweet little fairy tale she found in the library, especially her cooler than cool classmates,  she’d be sent to social Siberia . . . forever.To Delilah, though, this fairy tale is more than just words on the page.  Sure, there’s a handsome (well, okay, incredibly handsome) prince, and a castle, and an evil villain, but it feels     as if there’s something deeper going on. And one day, Delilah finds out there is. Turns out, this Prince Charming  is not just a one-dimensional character in a book. He’s real, and a certain fifteen-year-old loner has caught his eye. But they’re from two different worlds, and how can it ever possibly work?

  1.  The Lying Game, by Sara Shepard       Fiction

           What would you do if you had a long-lost twin and she disappeared the day you were supposed to meet? How far  would you go to find out what went wrong? In Sara Shepard’s bestselling Lying Game series, Emma Paxton assumes her twin Sutton’s identity to solve her murder. It’s a dangerous game, and Emma is playing with a killer…


  1. Homecoming, by Cynthia Voigt      Fiction

         Thirteen-year-old Dicey Tillerman, and her brothers James (10) and Sammy (6), and sister Maybeth (9), lived in a wooden house out in the dunes in Provincetown, Massachusetts. The family is poor, their father walked out just before Sammy was born, and only Dicey retains any memory of him. Their mother worked herself too hard  (physically and emotionally) to take care of her four children and make ends meet.  The novel begins when the  Tillerman children find themselves alone in their car, some miles from their home, in a shopping mall parking lot in      Peewauket, apparently Connecticut. Momma had driven them away from home, saying that they were going to visit her Aunt Cilla in Bridgeport, Connecticut. At the mall, she parked the car and walked away, instructing the  children to do what Dicey told them.

  1. Stranded, by Jeff Probst   Fiction

       A family vacation becomes a game of survival! It was supposed to be a vacation–and a chance to get to know each other better. But when a massive storm sets in without warning, four kids are shipwrecked alone on a rocky  jungle island in the middle of the South Pacific. No adults. No instructions. Nobody to rely on but themselves. Can they make it home alive?  A week ago, the biggest challenge Vanessa, Buzz, Carter, and Jane had was learning to live as a new blended family. Now the four siblings must find a way to work as a team if they’re going to make it           off the island. They’re all in this adventure together–but first they’ve got to learn to survive one another.

  1. Loser, by Jerry Spinelli      Fiction

        Just like other kids, Zinkoff rides his bike, hopes for snow days, and wants to be like his dad when he grows but Zinkoff also raises his hand with all the wrong answers, trips over his own feet, and falls down with laughter over a word like “Jabip.” Other kids have their own word to describe him, but Zinkoff is too busy to  hear it. He doesn’t know he’s not like everyone else. And one winter night, Zinkoff’s differences show that  any name can someday become “hero.”  With some of his finest writing to date and great wit and humor,  Jerry Spinelli creates a story about a boy’s individuality surpassing the need to fit in and the genuine importance of failure.

  1. The Summer I Turned Pretty, by Jenny Han     Fiction

         Belly measures her life in summers. Everything good, everything magical happens between the months of June and August. Winters are simply a time to count the weeks until the next summer, a place away from  the beach house, away from Susannah, and most importantly, away from Jeremiah and Conrad. They are the boys that Belly has known since her very first summer — they have been her brother figures, her crushes, and everything in between. But one summer, one wonderful and terrible summer, the more  everything changes, the more it all ends up just the way it should have been all along.


**Please note: Key/Major Events are listed twice on the graphic organizer intentionally to allow you more room to list what happens in your novel.

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