Top 10 Teacher Picks for Summertime Reading for Grades 4 Through 12

By Stacey Mattish

As summer drags on, kids become restless, longing for adventures and excitement. As a parent, you want to give your children these adventures but don’t want the summer wasted on frivolity. You want your children to learn. What if you could give both adventure and education to your kids at the same time? You’d have a win-win scenario! A good book will allow your children to get lost in an adventure and experience new places, while at the same time building vocabulary and reading comprehension skills: the basis for all learning. The teachers at CCS have comprised a list of some of our top picks for summertime reading to keep your kids moving forward.

1. A Father’s Promise – Set in WWII Poland and written by Donnalynn Hess, A Father’s Promise shows an 11-year-old boy’s struggle to survive against Nazi Germany’s determination to destroy Jews. He learns to trust God in the darkest hours of his life. 

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Grades 4-6

2. Brill of Exitorn – Written by Peggy Downing, Brill is a young boy who is taken from home to serve as the companion to the emperor’s spoiled son. He soon finds himself involved in a plan to help restore the rightful king to power. 

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Grades 4-6

3. These Are My People – A biography by Mildred Howard, These Are My People traces the life of missionary Gladys Alyward. A missionary from England to China, Gladys has to overcome the Chinese wanting to shut her out. Through calming a prison riot, she gets to minister to many and eventually opens an orphanage and rescues many children. 

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Grades 4-6

4. Michael Vey: The Prisoner of Cell 25 – Written by Richard Evans, a 14-year-old boy discovers he has electrical powers. He and his best friend unite with a girl with the same power and find themselves being hunted by a group that wants to use the electrified kids’ unique abilities to control the world. 

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Junior High

5. When Calls the HeartSet in the Canadian West, a Canadian Mountie courts a school teacher from the East in the early 1900s. Janette Oke weaves a tale around the teacher’s trials adjusting to the Canadian frontier.

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Junior High

6. The Hawk and the Jewel – Written by Lori Wick, this romance features Brandon and Sunny. Sunny gets shipwrecked as a child and is raised in a sultan’s palace until she is rescued by Brandon as a teen. The story traces Sunny’s spiritual journey as she comes to know the Lord.

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High School

7. Monday Night Jihad – Co-written by Jason Elam and Steve Yohn, Monday Night Jihad is a rapid-fire action book. Quarterback Riley Covington has to return to his former life as special-ops when a terrorist blows up a professional football game. 

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High School

8. Dead Reckoning – Another rapid-fire action book, Dead Reckoning features a college dive student who unwittingly gets caught up in the world of international spies in India. Written by Ronie Kendig, it’s a book even the girls will love with its hint of romance. 

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High School

9. The Testing A dystopian by Joelle Charbonneau, The Testing features a high school graduate who is thrilled to have made the cut and been invited to enter The Testing to see if she qualifies for The University. Little does she know she is entering a fight for her life. The Testing is perfect for high school on up and addresses the idea of “the end does not justify the means.” 

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High School

 10. Matched – Ally Condie’s thrilling dystopian-romance reads for high school girls and up, taking you on a journey with Cassia to discover her perfect “Match.” When she is told she will be marrying her best friend, she soon falls in love with another man, but the Society is against this. Cassia decides to follow her heart and stop the Society from controlling the people’s lives.

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High School

With so many great books to read, when your kids say they have nothing to do this summer, sweetly smile and hand them a book. They will not only be learning great vocabulary and reading skills which will equip them for life, but they will get to explore the world and have experiences beyond their imagination. Invite them to have an adventure!

Feature image courtesy of Flickr user Enokson.

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