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  • Summer
  • Reading

Summer 2020!

This summer is different than usual, so we’re doing things differently. For one, these lists are going to grow throughout the summer, so check back!

For another, we’ve attempted to provide titles that are available online. This means you’ll often see links to the e-book version of the book on the DC Public Library Overdrive shelves. (Even if you live outside the District, if you’re enrolled at GDS, you can get a card. Apply here.) If you want to purchase books for home delivery, please consider ordering from Bookshop.org to support local independent booksellers, including GDS-affiliated Child’s Play.

We hope you find many titles to read from our suggested lists, but there are also many other ways to find reading that fits you and your family. Many public libraries are offering community reads, with the books available online all summer (for example, DCPL’s Family Read: The New Kid). Consider following your favorite authors on social media to see what they’re doing for their fans, as stay-at-home orders extend into summer. A reminder as well, that while our lists are always written with an eye to be windows and mirrors to diverse experiences, you can find more by checking out Welcoming Schools, #WeNeedDiverseBooks, and other booklists from the GDS DEI Resources page.

At GDS, we believe that books can help you change the world by broadening your awareness of characters, situations, and information beyond your current experiences.* Encountering challenging ideas and content in books is part of learning and growing. Depending upon who you are, amongst these books you might encounter uncomfortable, emotionally difficult, or even painful content, ideas or language. Remember, though, that you should never have to grapple with difficult content alone; reading may be a solitary activity, but books can -- and should -- be shared!

“The world is big and small, and books help us navigate. [They are] tools to fight back against some of the ignorance.” -- Jason Reynolds, National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature

* for more about the GDS Library Summer Reading philosophy, see The Hopper Effect

Summer Reading Challenge

Submit a photo of yourself reading a book, via email or Dropbox. We love to see photos of pre-K to 12th graders reading during the summer! We will use all the photos for a joyful collage of reading at the beginning of the school year.

Check It Out

Your librarians are also offering some book-related entertainment this summer. Lower School students, check out Seesaw. Middle & High School students, check your email.