Summer Reading

Goal of the Summer Reading Program

The goal of our summer reading program is to foster a love of reading by providing students with an opportunity to read for enjoyment. Recent research on the benefits of reading for pleasure are discussed in this article: The Benefits of Reading for Fun. Studies have shown that there is a link between reading for enjoyment and the development of stronger language skills. Reading transports readers to new places and exposes them to new cultures. Readers are able to experience a situation from the perspective of a character in the book and gain valuable insight into the lives of others. We hope that our summer reading program will guide our students to become lifelong readers.

Student Choice

Our program allows the students to choose a book from our list of suggestions. This list is diverse and extensive, which should allow each student to find a book of interest. Students may select a book in print or digital (ebook or audiobook) format. The list of books is available on our website and can be viewed here: Summer Reading Suggestions for 2021.

Expectations for All Incoming Students

Students should select one book from the list of suggestions and read it during the summer months, although we hope that students will choose to read more than one book. In September, students will be expected to do two things: First, students will be asked to complete a quick survey on our summer reading program. Second, students will be expected to participate in a book discussion/class activity. (Students are encouraged to jot down a few notes for their own use in the fall.) As an incentive, for each book that they read over the summer, students will earn a raffle ticket. A raffle will take place in the fall and the lucky winners will receive a prize. 

Book Access

Students are welcome to purchase a print copy of a book or they can borrow it from their local public library. We are providing instructions on how these books can be accessed from the school's digital library by using Sora. We are also providing instructions on how these books can be accessed from Boston Public Library's (BPL) digital resources using Hoopla. 

Using Sora

Blue Hills is a member of the MLS Commonwealth eBook Collection. As a member of the Blue Hills community, you can simply use your gmail login to borrow from the digital collection for free anytime, anywhere. Watch this video to learn how. You can read your ebook on a computer (as shown in the video) or you can download the Sora app on your phone or tablet. Your reading will automatically sync across your devices. Most of the books in this collection are limited to a single loan per book, which means that there may be a waitlist for certain books. However, there are a number of ”Sweet Reads” on our list that are highlighted in yellow. This means that they are available for simultaneous use to everyone (no waiting, no holds) through August 20, 2021.

Using Hoopla

The advantage of using hoopla is that it provides an unlimited number of simultaneous loans per book. This means that there is never a waitlist - all of the audiobooks and ebooks are always available. To access the resources that are available on hoopla, you need an eCard to the Boston Public Library (BPL.) Anyone who lives in Massachusetts is eligible for a BPL eCard. You can register for a BPL eCard here. Once you have your eCard, you can sign up for hoopla and take advantage of all of its digital resources. Sign up for hoopla here. You can use hoopla on your computer, or you can download the hoopla app to your phone or tablet.