275 Prospect Street, PO Box 67, Norwood, MA 02062
781.762.6804 Phone | 781.762.0229 Fax

Summer Reading

Dear Parents and Members of the Norwood Community:

Did you know that over one year, on average, a student’s time is proportioned as follows:

Sleeping: 33% (based on sleeping 8 hours/day)
In School: 13%
Out of School: 54%

Of the ”out of school” awake time, a student’s time awake during two months of summer (based on sleeping 9 hours a day) accounts for approximately 12% of his/her overall awake time in a year. That is almost the same amount of time as a student spends in school for the whole year!

So what’s the important take away? Parents play a very important role in enhancing their child’s opportunity and ability to succeed in school. If you let your child not read over the summer, he/she will experience what the researchers call “summer slide” or “summer loss.” A student can actually fall far behind and lose ground with his/her peers who read a lot of good material (books, magazines, text of any sort) over the summer. Therefore, it is very important that all students take advantage of their available summer time (while also mixing in some fun) to stay on their game, sharpen their game, or get ahead by reading a lot of good print material (text). In order to accomplish this, you may need to put your foot down and limit the amount of time spent watching TV or playing computer games. This is especially true for boys (research shows they lag well behind girls in reading and writing).

For this reason, we have strengthened our summer reading program K-12. By setting higher expectations for summer reading, we are supporting our school system’s district-wide literacy initiative and our efforts to improve our students’ performance on the MCAS, PSAT, SAT, ACT, AP, and other tests of achievement and aptitude.  Also, the 2011 Common Core State Standards require that all students be able to read and understand informational text of increasing complexity so that all students are career and college ready.

Parents, siblings, relatives play an even more critical role for those students who may not be independent readers yet. These students will need your help by your reading to them often. If you have trouble reading to your children in English, then it is equally valuable to read to them in your native language. If your child has learning differences or challenges, please know that most of the books on our summer reading list are available in audio and visual formats digitally as well as in print. Use your free town public library (Morrill Memorial) to help you find book formats that will work best for your student; it is a great resource and has a great summer reading program! You can contact the Morrill Library at www.norwoodlibrary.org or by calling 781-769-0200.

Our librarians, reading teachers, and English teachers have carefully provided your child with a variety of options for what books they can read and how they can respond to a selected book. They have worked hard to pick books that your child can enjoy.  Please take the time to read and understand the summer reading requirements and assignments for your child’s September grade level, found on the accompanying web pages in the navigation bar to the left and on your school’s website, so you can assist your son or daughter in completing this important requirement.

Lastly, and most importantly, this is only a minimum requirementWe strongly encourage all students to read more,as much as possible, this summer than what is required of them. We hope they will pick books on topics they are interested in and will enjoy.  Use a dictionary frequently: vocabulary is power. Have fun as a family learning and using new words together. If you want your child to succeed, make sure he/she reads a lot this summer, and beyond.


Alec Wyeth
Assistant Superintendent

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