Summer Assignments 2020

Happy Summer, Prep Readers! It's time for some SSR--Sustained Summer Reading. Whether for pleasure or leisure, reading reinforces our Ignatian mission by promoting the ideals of a lifelong learner who is “open to growth” and “intellectually competent.” Summer reading also cultivates a community of learners by having a large and diverse group with disparate experiences and ideas share the same text. What learning comes from shared experience, and insightful, reflective conversation about that experience!

The History, English and Religious Studies Departments have issued required summer reading for you. The departments have assigned a book per grade level. Go to each department’s summer reading tab to learn the specifics of each department’s requirements.

Also note that each department encourages you to “read beyond” the required readings. It is through reading that we learn more about ourselves and the human condition, often through characters whose journeys seem so different from ours. As you know, often it’s through embarking on a character’s intrepid, serpentine, magical, painful and self-fulfilling quest that we find common ground, a shared humanity. So, seek to discover more about yourself and the world around you through your reading this summer. In this quest for the magis, you are bound to have a great summer full of great books.

Also, the Math Department requires a summer packet to be completed based on your 2020-21 course.

Be in touch with us if you have any questions.


Mr. Patragnoni, English Department Chair
Mr. Fortin, History Department Chair
Mr. Andrew Fabry, Math Chair

English Assignments

The Prep English Department is excited to announce this year’s required summer reading.
  1. Freshmen: Season of Life: A Football Star, a Boy, a Journey to Manhood by Jeffrey Marx
  2. Sophomore: Bartleby the Scrivener by Herman Melville
  3. Juniors: Purple Hibiscus by Chimamanda Adichie (Click here for a context packet.)
  4. AP IV Seniors: White Teeth by Zadie Smith (Vintage International) and Sense and Sensibility by Jane Austen (Penguin Classics)
  5. Seniors enrolled solely in English electives have no required summer reading.
You will need to purchase either a paperback or hardbound copy of your assigned book and annotate that book using the Annotation Guide as a resource. This guide will serve as your instruction sheet for how to read your book actively and critically. Be sure to bring your annotated copy of the book with you to the first day of classes in September. Your English teacher will grade your annotations. These annotations will serve as a great aid to you during class discussions of the novel in the first week of school. Some teachers may also quiz/test their classes on the material. While it is up to the discretion of the individual teacher, you should be prepared for an assessment on the reading.

These works of literature construct complex narratives with rich characters that will prompt them to examine their own unique experiences and how they define their respective identities. Your reading will certainly encourage you to consider the same questions about who you are and how you define yourself. Above all, though, these books are fun to read. We hope you enjoy them.

If you have any questions please contact the Department Chair at

History Assignments

The History Department supports the idea of summer reading. Reading – whether for pleasure or for information – reinforces our Ignatian mission by promoting the ideals of a lifelong learner who is “open to growth” and “intellectually competent.” Summer reading also cultivates a community of learners by having a large and diverse group with disparate experiences and ideas share the same text. The History Department encourages students (and parents) to complement their reading with trips to local museums, battle sites, and places of historic value, as well as explorations of integrated websites and film portrayals.

  • Freshmen
    World History & AP Human Geography
    Admiral James Stavridis, Sea Power: The History and Geopolitics of the World's Oceans (Penguin, 2017).
    Study Guide >>
  • Sophomores
    US, AP US and American Studies
    Robert F. Kennedy, Thirteen Days: A Memoir of the Cuban Missile Crisis (WW Norton, 1999).

    Eurasia and Africa in the Fifteenth Century - Please note: this is for AP US students ONLY. Assessment will be done in class when students return.
  • Juniors
    US Govt and AP US Government
    Seth Lipsky, The Citizen’s Constitution: An Annotated Guide (Basic Books, 2011).
    Study Guide >>
  • Seniors
    AP Psychology
    Oliver Sacks, The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat and Other Clinical Tales (Touchstone, 1998).
    Assessment will be done in class when students return.

    AP European History
    Simon Price and Peter Thonemann, The Birth of Classical Europe: A History from Troy to Augustine (Penguin, 2010).
    Study Guide >>

Math Assignments

Below please find Review Packets for the following courses. Attention all freshmen (class of 2024): Please wait to receive your course approval before completing your math packet; approvals will be sent later this summer.
The following classes do NOT have Review Packets:
  • MAT 408 - AP Statistics
  • MAT 412 - Finite Mathematics with Application
  • MAT 414 - Algebraic & Financial Applications
  • MAT 416 - Introduction to Statistics

Religious Studies Assignments

The Religious Studies Department continues its tradition of assigning summer reading for students at all grade levels. These titles have been selected both to reinforce what students have learned in past years as well as to introduce them to new topics that will be considered in the new school year.

All students at a given grade level will read the same book. Teachers will assess students’ knowledge and understanding of the readings at their discretion, usually through class discussion, a quiz, an essay, or a combination of these options. To prepare for the assessment, students are urged to take notes based on the guide questions which can be accessed below.

We hope you enjoy your summer, and your summer reading!
  • Freshmen
D'Adamo, Francesco
  • Sophomores
Hesse, Herman
  • Juniors
Stevenson, Bryan
Just Mercy
  • Seniors
Kushner, Harold S.
When Bad Things Happen To Good People.
Study Guide >>

Blum, Howard
The Brigade
Study Guide>> (Please note: this is for Ethics of War and Peace students ONLY)