Last year we celebrated the one-hundredth anniversary of Waldorf education with the motto "Waldorf 100: Learn to Change the World." Our reading then, for Summer 2019, was Anthony Ray Hinton’s The Sun Does Shine: How I Found Life, Freedom, and
Justice . Hinton’s memoir provided moving insight into his experience with what is now known as systemic racism (also called structural racism) and the inequities it causes in the American criminal justice system and in society as a whole. This year, we enter the second century of Waldorf education in the midst of unprecedented global enthusiasm for making positive changes in precisely these issues. Our reading for this year, Summer 2020, is We are Not Yet Equal: Understanding Our Racial Divide ,
by Carol Anderson. This book is an adaptation for a wider and younger audience of the author’s book White Rage , which was written in the wake of events in the summer of 2014 in Ferguson, Missouri. It is a challenging and eye-opening reassessment of critical moments in American history after 1865. As the all-school read, it will stimulate the conversations that drive our ongoing work to contribute to a freer and fairer world.

So, without further ado . . . the summer reading assignment.

All students will read two books.

  • Book #1: We are Not Yet Equal: Understanding Our Racial Divide, by Carol Anderson. Bloomsbury, 2019.

  • Book #2: Class Readings. Each student is asked to choose and read a second book over the summer selected from the category listed for their grade below:

  • Grade 9: Read a book considered to be an American classic.
When you return in the fall, be prepared to define the term “American Classic” and show how the book you chose fits into that category.

  • Grade 10: Read a book within a literary genre of your choice.
When you return in the fall, be able to define the characteristics of the genre you have chosen using examples from the book you read.

  • Grade 11: Read a book you have never read before by an author you have
read before. Reflect on how the book you read compares with the earlier book you read by the same author. Make some written notes of your thoughts and bring them with you when you return in the fall.

  • Grade 12: Read a book related to ideas for your senior project.
If you have not already created one, invest in a journal dedicated to
senior project use only. Make a dated entry in which you identify
the source (MLA citation), summarize the content, and reflect on
how it relates (or doesn’t relate) to your senior project.

What else should you read this summer? Whatever books interest you. There are loads of fascinating and informative titles on all of the events that are current in our world today. Classic novels, ancient and modern, beckon with adventure, romance, excitement, and knowledge. Reading can be fun as well as informative, so read widely. Follow your interests. Keep a written record of what you read (author and title) and bring it with you when we return in the fall. This written record is an excellent place to jot down questions, reactions, and comments about what you have read. You will find a list of reading recommendations attached. In additional to general fiction and nonfiction titles, we have added new categories to help you pursue areas of particular interest.

For students and families who would like more information to discover if a book is the one for them, descriptions and reviews abound on the internet at such sites as the Kirkus Book Reviews (, in the publisher-descriptions of books and “look-inside” excerpts found at Amazon (, and at publishers’ websites.

Happy reading!
The High School Faculty
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